Thursday, April 25, 2013

A Kitchen Of My Own

I am not much of a cook although I love to invite friends at home for a small gathering. In fact, as a newlywed, I can only manage to prepare fried dishes. As time passed, I was able to "evolve" and improve my cooking skills, thanks mostly to my Mom who taught me how and to experience, another great teacher. 

I also enjoy watching cooking shows and aside from learning the mouth-watering recipes that I would love to prepare myself some day, I also dream of being able to serve them to my loved ones in my beautiful dining room, with a contemporary dining furniture right at the heart of it. I dream of chic table settings in my glass-topped dining table and comfort for my family and dinner guests in the matching dining chairs.

While waiting for the food to be ready, guests could lounge by the kitchen bar and have a seat at one of the bar stools and enjoy some cocktail drinks while having a whiff of the feast that will later be served.. And I know just what kind to get for my kitchen bar: the Havana white kitchen bar stool - just the perfect addition to any contemporary kitchen! We could play some nice music, not so loud so as not to distract the conversations going on. 

Yes, I want a huge kitchen - a cozy yet contemporary one. One in which I can move around without bumping onto table edges and one that is equipped with modern kitchen appliances to make cooking easier and fun.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

What's Keeping My Little Lady Busy?

School is over since the middle of March and that means my little lady has all the time in the world to play to her heart's content. It also means more time for ballet, the one activity that's keeping her (and me) busy during the weekdays. She has ballet lessons every Monday, Wednesday and Friday and acting and voice classes every Monday and Wednesday. So expect us to be out of the house on these days...

My little lady has always loved ballet and so as parents, we try to support and nurture her interests so that in the end, she will grow up knowing of our support. I also believe that children should be given choices even at an early age so they will know that they have the option to choose.

Watch out for my little girl's recital on May 19 at the CAP Grand Auditorium, Davao City.

For their recital in May, they are doing a Broadway Musical Montage... Right now they are learning some songs from the Broadway musical "Annie" and I really find it cute. As for ballet, she is still at the Babies ballet so it's more of the fun side of ballet that people can expect. 

During one of their ballet classes... She was attentively listening to their instructor.
Guess I'll be one those stage moms in the event because I am just proud of my little lady!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

It's All In The Details

Seasons come and seasons go so it is always a good idea to keep your home "updated" with the latest trends in home decorations. The accessories need not be expensive but they must exude the feel that you want to create. 

Because it is spring, touches of cheery colors in different hues will add life to your usual whites. To make your living room seem brighter, you can add yellows and orange accents to your neutral colored sofas, furniture and walls. 

You can also create that plush and cosy look in your living room by layering your rugs. You can layer two rugs or carpets of different sizes, one that is inexpensive and with a neutral color that will act as a base and a smaller one to place on top of the base. You can also make your room child-friendly by installing stain-resistant carpets so you wouldn't have to worry about spills and all. 

You can also place a potted plant or two inside the house to add a natural and fresh touch to your home.

So you see, redecorating your home and making it fit for any season is not really as expensive as you think. All it takes is some creativity, resourcefulness and an eye for details.

A Healthy and More Active Lifestyle

I keep complaining that I don't look good each time I try a dress or anything on and that it is very difficult to find a pair of jeans or shirt or blouse that would fit my build. Since I had my baby, my weight just skyrocketed until I have crossed the obese BMI and was never really serious about taking action. Then it dawned on me that I was just all that: complaints. I know that I wouldn't just get back in shape unless I decide that I wanted to have a healthy lifestyle.

And mind you, losing weight is never an easy task. You really have to have the will power, the determination and the endurance to face all the challenges that come your way. It has been two weeks since I have been actively going to the fitness gym in the early morning to sweat it all out and although it is a bit disappointing to learn that I haven't lost significant weight, just the fact that I am moving and shaking my body and sweating it all out is enough drive for me. I am thinking, this is not just for my husband... this is above all for ME. If I want to look good and feel good, I have to be confident again with how I look and I can begin by losing weight.

Loving my blanched carrots and brocolli. I could have this for all my meals! :)
I have also started to change my diet into eating less carbs and more of fruits and vegetables. I also try not to eat red meat, prefering fish and chicken instead. I know that the changes will not be seen overnight as I've only just begun but I know that one day, choosing a healthy and more active lifestyle will bring me to my goals.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Great Deals, Great Finds at Lazada Philippines!

I have always enjoyed online shopping since it saves me the time and the effort in going to the store. I also find myself getting great deals online which are otherwise not available or not offered in-store. In the Philippines, it is a good thing that there is now an online shopping store that carries a variety of products, from techie gadgets to fashion clothing to household goods. 

I am talking about Online Shopping Manila, an online store that practically has about everything (except for food items). They have got lots of great deals on offer like the MasterCard Mondays, in which customers get an additional 10% discount on their orders if they use their MasterCard debit or credit cards. They also have the Super Hourly Deals in which selected items are put on sale every hour. For the techie customer, there is the 7 Inch Tablet Madness where various Android tablets are on offer at discounts of up to 43%. Get your own Haipad Tablet for as low as Php3,189.00. The New Haipad Anaconda Edition 7" Android 4.0 Dual Cam 4GB with Wifi (White), for example has Android 4.0 OS, 4GB ROM, a 1.2GHz processor, a dual camera and has a MicroSD slot for an extra memory of up to 32GB.

To find out more, here is a video of their latest TVC:

Enjoy shopping and enjoy the great deals on offer at Lazada Philippines today!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Ah, Bantayan!

Guess where me and my little girl's happy feet has taken us this time? To Bantayan Island in Cebu, Philippines! Great sunrise, white sandy beach, fresh seafood, warm company... what more can I ask? It was just for an overnight stay but it has been great! Until next time Bantayan... I hope I can better explore you on our next visit. Thanks for the warmth and the hospitality!

Sunrise by the beach at our quaint little resort in North Ville Beach Resort.
She was delighted to find this star fish...
Fetched some water for the sand castle.
At the resort with her cousin.
Cousins enjoying the hut for the last time before we leave... 
Fresh catch... guess who killed Lapu-lapu?
The centuries old Church of Sts. Peter and Paul in Bantayan.
Dried fish anyone?
To get to Bantayan Island, we first drove from our starting point in Toledo City going to Hagnaya Port. Then from the port, we took the ferry (fare costs Php170/person + terminal fee of Php5/person) going to Bantayan Island. From the port of Bantayan, you can either take the shuttle service of the resort where you are staying in (which are in most cases free of charge) or take a motorcycle, a multi-cab, or a tricycle. 

Where will our happy feet take us for our next adventure? Stay tuned and stay updated!

Stressless in Spring

Spring has always been one of my favorite seasons because everything seems to come back to life. Each Spring also brings a promise that things will be better. 

And with Spring comes of course spring cleaning!  With shops offering furniture spring sale, spring is the perfect time to buy new furniture. There is definitely a wide array of furniture designs that you can choose for your bedroom and living room for a completely different ambiance and look inside your homes.

The Arion Leather Stressless Plus system available at Cousins Store.
And what better way to do spring cleaning than changing those old and worn living room sofas with a new set of comfy ones like the Arion Leather Stressless Plus system? Online shops even have the the low back 2 seater is on sale so it is a perfect addition to your existing living room set. It is perfect for those lazy movie nights or even if you simply just want to relax. I have always been curious about the Stressless line of furniture and have been wanting to try one. I heard that they are really comfortable and that you can take the ultimate comfort test to find out which one suits your body best. With adjustable back seats, each "Stressless Plus" system promises correct support for the head and lower back. As you recline, the headrest adjusts automatically, providing anatomically correct lumbar support in every position. What's more, customers have a variety of color and finish choices.

Enjoy spring cleaning and come home soon to a relaxing home!  

Visita Iglesia 2013

It has been a memorable Holy Week for me as it was my first time to go on a Visita Iglesia. I did some online research so I may better understand why there is such a tradition in the Catholic faith and found out that it's like another version of the Way of the Cross. 

One usually visits seven or fourteen churches but in our case, we managed to visit only 9, since there wasn't enough time for us. I initially planned to do two stations in each church and found a really nice Way of the Cross guide on the internet, with prayers and bible readings relevant to each station of the station. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to finish the praying the Way of the Cross since we had to rush from one church to the next. 

What was nice though was that we were able to pause for a while after the veneration of the cross and the veneration of the Lady of Sorrows. It was a nice feeling and my little girl got to experience how we celebrate the Lenten season in the Philippines and she quite enjoyed falling in line and touching the wounds on the image of the cruficied Christ. An idea came up to me while doing the Visita Iglesia. Maybe we can also do our own version of the Visita Iglesia in Europe, visiting a church or two in one European country and then move on to the next. Or maybe we can just do a Visita Iglesia around Germany or around the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg. We'll see... the possibilities are endless and we could actually do it every year and turn it into another family tradition. That way, our children will be able to appreciate and understand our Catholic faith better.

Here are some of the photos that I managed to take on our Visita Iglesia journey:

The little girl and her cousin outside the St. Jude Thaddeus Parish (2) in Malvar St., Davao City
Lining up for the veneration of the cross at St. Paul Parish (3) in Juna Subd., Matina, Davao City
Inside San Pedro Cathedral (4), San Pedro Street, Davao City
Veneration of the Cross at Our Lady of Fatima Parish (5), Davao City
Inside the Sta. Ana Parish (6), Sta. Ana Street, Davao City
At the Sacred Heart Parish (7), N. Torres, Obrero, Davao City
At San Antonio de Padua Parish (8), Agdao, Davao City
St. Joseph the Worker Parish (9), Sasa, Davao City
A group photo at the last church we visited. Taken at St. Joseph the Worker Parish, Sasa, Davao City
Did not manage a photo of the first church we visited, which was the Our Lady of the Assumption Parish along F. Torres, Davao City.

Until the next Visita Iglesia! To God be the glory! Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam.

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