Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Why do I feel pregnant??

"Duhh?!?!?!" Hahaha..I know exactly what you're thinking LOL! :)

I've been in this am-I-preggo-or-not limbo for close to 2 weeks and it's really driving me crazy! Yaaahh!! You know that crucial moment when it's too early to tell from a home pregnancy test (hpt) or beta serum hcg determination (blood test) whether you are or aren't and yup - I'm in THAT zone!

Been searching all over the net too for definitive signs but they all come with disclaimers..why o why haha. What's a "feeling preggers" mom to do? Since Daddy A hit the sack, then I'll continue my rambling here :)

What symptoms am I having?

Number one on my list is just a weird feeling in the lower abdomen. Not the fluttery kind. Definitely no kicks in there yet. It's just weird in the sense that sometimes it feels like there is and at the same time there isn't anything in there. No bloating though! 

Second would be a pinching feeling when I stand for long periods. Like a very small but heavy pinch that won't go away. I'm actually alarmed by this because it's somehow similar to the subchorionic hemorrhage a.k.a. "internal bleeding" (SCH) when I had my 2nd. This intensified when we travelled to Pampanga for work. 

Another would be some *TMI here* sort of spotting. By all accounts, it definitely is off-sched to have a very early spotting, but there you go! At this point I already got in touch with my OB, Dr. Menefrida Reyes. I know from experience that if ever, it still is too early to see anything from a trans-V ultrasound so she recommended for me to get a serum beta hcg's a blood test that is more sensitive than an HPT. I got it from Hi-Precision for PHP 760.00. I asked from Metro Hospital and they quoted PHP 1,200 for the hcg test. --> The test came out negative and I'm supposed to do a repeat after a week.

Of course, there are all sorts of miscellaneous symptoms: nausea on the 3rd day, a surprising craving for pancit (I'm especially drawn to North Park's Lo Mien now), Spiderman super sense of smell. The last one is funny because when we were in San Fernando, I smelled the tenant's cooking as if they were doing it right in front of me! So weird!!

Finally, a girl name just suddenly came to mind. I told Daddy A about it and per usual, he said I may be too imaginative haha. 

How do I feel about this?

These past 2 weeks have been going on so sloooowww.. Like c'mon, can't I take the next pregnancy test already? It's so tiring to think and think hahaha. But if ever we really are pregnant, I think we've got a lot on our plate. 

It's gonna change so much of the family dynamics that we have now. I don't know yet how to deal as I came from a 2-child household...

But then again, are these early symptoms (as I call them) mother's instinct being our potential 3rd pregnancy? If so, it's so awesome to know you're pregnant before any scientific test says that you are. Right??

And if not...well, I guess I can humor myself and Daddy A with all my so-called symptoms and imagination in overdrive hahaha :)


This is really just an over-all weird feeling or awareness that I hope we can confirm soon. Even then, I'm already praying for a safe baby, mommy, pregnancy, childbirth and our whole family. Everyday I feel it's a struggle to raise 2 kids, more will be a challenge but I know we can get through this with God's help.

Am I just thinking these things up? Maybe, maybe not?...Who knows?!?!?!

Mommies, share naman if you also felt something like this :)

P.S. It's my birthday next Monday...woohoo!!! Cheers to 35!!! :) 

P.P.S. I'm sooo nervous to his Publish but here we go!! 

Monday, September 2, 2019

Watami Japanese Casual Restaurant - my kinda ramen!

When they say "food is life", they're not wrong, you know! ;p

Waiting a few minutes before the restaurant opens

Early this year I have joined an organization and have been a proud Pru Life U.K. Financial Consultant since (Wooohooo!!!).

(Follow me on my Essentially PRUdent FB Page)

I love the advocacy, I love the people I work with and to complete the triumvirate...I also absolutely love our office at Ayala North Exchange (ANEX) a.k.a. the former parking lot of Makati Medical Center :D

Enjoying great food with a great team - Pru Life U.K.'s Amber branch

WHY WHY WHY??? Just visit and you'll be super amazed with the choice retailers / food concessionaires in the building. We've got staples such as Starbucks, Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, milk teas, Bread Talk, Potato Corner, Banapple, Mama Lou's, Floating Island, Botejyu, Denny's, Chicken Peri-Peri, Italliani's and the one that has captured my heart este my tummy - Watami Japanese Casual Dining! Wooosaaah!!

Left: Watami ANEX interiors; Right: Watami Miso Ramen

I've been to Watami a couple of times already and do you know what sealed the deal for me? It's their SPICY MISO RAMEN. I can eat it all week! No kidding!! 

Who knew that their perfect combination of long-simmered broth, peanut butter and toban djan (chili bean paste) could hit the right spot in my gut?!?

I'm not a ramen connoisseur but this is definitely my type! Hahaha :) 

My love... Watami's Spicy Miso Ramen with Chashu Pork and Egg

Of course, let's not forget about their super soft chasu pork and soft boiled egg. Waah!! I was in heaven for the half hour that I was delighting in my precious ramen :D 

The price at PHP 395 --> it's not pang petsa-de-peligro fare but personally I will say that the price is reasonable.

Will I go back? Most definitely! It's spicy but not the in-your-face type wherein you won't be able to feel your mouth for a long time :) 

Any other ramen recommendations from you guys?

P.S. Here was my ramen 'date'. I'm a BIG bag kind of gal. So when I need to run errands far away, I feel the need to lug everything with me LOL! Perhaps for another post I can share the why's and why not's of this choice. So far this TNF bag has been serving me well :)

Maybe I'll also share my personal challenge of just sticking to a right-sized bag (for me) and what I put in it. ;)

Commuting with all 34L TNF Router backpack :)

PPS. Not a sponsored post. I just really love their spicy ramen so much so that I broke my blogging hiatus just to share with you ha :D

Jaa ne! :)

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

What quote do you live by?

"If there is a better solution...FIND IT."

These are some wise words by a wise man, Thomas A. Edison.

I remember way back in grade school, when my mom and I were looking around at a bookstore and this exact quote really caught my eye. I knew I had to immediately ask her if we can buy the printed quote. It was the 90's after all  And this quote has been plastered on my door since that day.

This quote really means a lot to me. It does not say to simply persevere or to try try again. It tells us that after trying so hard or exhausting our efforts, we take a step back and REFLECT on it. Did we achieve our goal? Are we happy about it? Is this it? Did we do the right thing? Did we do things right? Is this the best we could put out there? Is there something MORE we need to do?

I think seeing this quote daily, helped me to carry this sense of introspection from childhood, to when I started working in the corporate world, to being a teacher, a wife, a mother, a home maker, and all other personal "reinventions". Far from asking perfection from us, this simply reminds us that "hey, if there is even one little bit sense of uncertainty or 'undoneness' in what you are doing..feel free to search, keep on experimenting even, until you find peace, find satisfaction in your work."

Likewise as mothers, we sometimes doubt and maybe feel that our monthly budget may not be enough. We sometimes get to that point where you know your family can afford most things but you know for certain that a few unforeseen circumstances can drive a wedge between that budget and your peace of mind.

-car batteries running out (PHP 5k)
-helper / yaya suddenly resigns (remaining salary + portion of 13th month pay + benefits + pamasahe)
-illness / hospitalization (can set you back at least PHP 10k per day for room, profession fees, meds)
-surge in electricity bills (can easily double during the summer months)

Wow, right?! And let's not forget the escalating education costs.

As mommies, we equally have a lot of weight on our shoulders too, like our husbands/partners. Whether we are working or staying at home, a lot of planning and budgeting goes through our hands.

Acknowledging our situation is a good start. Awareness of our current "solutions" is good too so we can REFLECT - is it still the right thing to do? Is there something more that needs to be done?

Translating that to real life:
-Is it enough to cut back on shopping?
-Is it enough to have money just in the bank?
-Have we made plans or provisions to protect our family's income?
-Is there another way of increasing our income?
Dear mommies, know that THERE IS A BETTER SOLUTION.
And we are here to help you and your family find it 

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

How Not To Die - A book that had me "shookt"

Pardon the "feeling millennial" reference but it's true!

In my memory there are only a few books that shocked me in my life. First is the Swiss Family Robinson for being the first full-length novel I had chosen for my Grade 6 book report. Emphasis on the length hahahaha..what was I thinking then? Next is The Lovely Bones well, for being what it is..I definitely wasn't able to have peace of mind nor had decent sleep midway into that book. 

And now in my mid-30's, I've been absolutely shocked (in a very good way) by what I have read in Dr. Michael Greger's How Not To Die book! I know most of you would be too!

How Not To Die 
In what way you ask? It is in a manner that has me literally questioning what have I been doing my whole life. Specifically, what have I been eating?? Shudders!! 

In essence, this book is organized by the top modern diseases that plague people. From coronary heart disease, lung disease, brain disease, digestive cancers, infections, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, liver disease, blood cancers, kidney disease, breast cancer, suicidal depression, prostate cancer, and Parkinson's disease. It also discusses why it happens, and how we can avoid it. Emphasis now on the fact that we have the power to avoid it. 

As a mom who prepares meals for her family, this is truly very significant information for me. This book is so powerful that it convinced me and my husband to gradually transition to the recommended 'whole food, plant-based diet' to better improve our health. I really feel blessed to have 'stumbled upon' this book after watching Netflix health documentaries. 

Here are some of the things that I learned from this book:

  1. That not only can we prevent most of these diseases, we can actually reverse them. This mentions a case wherein "...even without weight loss, a plant-based diet can enable those who have had type 2 diabetes for decades get off all their insulin injections in as few as two weeks."
  2. It guides us on what ingredients to cut back on: *ahem* salt, oil, animal products.
  3. It also shows us what kind of food we should eat more of. Specifically Dr. Greger's Daily Dozen of: beans, berries, other fruits, cruciferous veggies, greens, other veggies, flaxseeds, nuts and seeds, herbs and spices, whole grains, beverages, and exercise.
  4. Moderation kills. I thoroughly appreciate how they offer the research-based data and let the reader decide for themselves whether to go all in with the change in diet, go 50-50 or don't change at all. "You can choose moderation and hit yourself with a smaller hammer, but why beat yourself up at all?"
  5. "A heart-healthy diet is a brain-healthy diet is a lung-healthy diet...unlike drugs - which only target specific functions, can have dangerous side effects, and may only treat the symptoms of disease - a healthy diet can benefit all organ systems at once, has good side effects, and may treat the underlying cause of illness."
  6. Waist-to-Height Ratio (WHtR) "The circumference of your belly should be half your height - ideally, less" this has been recommended as an alternative or as an adjunct to BMI
  7. On smoothies: "...blending is better than juicing to preserve nutrition. Juicing removes more than just fiber."
And soooo much more if you get to read it.

I got the kindle e-book version so luckily I didn't realize it was a long read. Despite the length, obviously I was so hooked. So much so that I think I bought 4 of it already - the e-book version, 2 I gave as gifts and 1 is the cookbook version. It is that life-changing that I sincerely want all my family and friends to get a chance to read it. 

My knowledge and perspective on "Preventive Health" is now on a different level, thanks to this book. I'm also glad that they recognize the fact that although the title is catchy, it could be a misnomer as we will all go eventually. Dr. Greger acknowledges that "it's about how not to die prematurely and that we have a tremendous power over our health destiny". Even in it's conclusion, the book is so full of wisdom. As they interviewed the president of the American College of Cardiology in 2015 on why he chose to eat a strictly plant-based diet, he said that "I don't mind dying, I just don't want it to be my fault."


Mommies (and Daddies too!), I really urge you to read this book and research more on proper nutrition (Netflix and Youtube has lots of health docus). 

There is a great sense of peace knowing that we are the gate-keepers to our family's best health. That we are doing right by them, and are giving our husband/partner and kids the best start in life.

And you know what else can give you that peace of mind? It is in knowing that your family is protected too for other eventualities :)

When it comes down to it, we can borrow Dr. Kim William's words:

"I don't mind dying, I just don't want it to be my fault - that my kids / family is left unprovided for."

As we have plan for our nutrition, let's also plan for our family's financial wellness. Know that you have the power and are also responsible for your family's financial health. 

All the best! :)

Talk to the #WomanFromThePRU

Disclaimer: This simple book review is not medical advise. Kindly consult your physician or health practitioner.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

10 Extravagances People Pay For

"All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy", they say. 

One of my favorite influencers recently polled in Twitter on the top extravagances his followers pay for. Some of the responses were pretty standard (coffee, tuition), some made me nod my head and say "Yeah, I agree" (like for direct flights) and still there were some that managed to surprise (I won't spoil it here)! 

What this shows is that although we have different tastes for little or big luxuries, this is still a part of life that we can't avoid. And maybe we really shouldn't. I would even suggest that this be part of what we plan and save for. 

In fact, treating ourselves to any of these personal rewards seem to make all our days' hard work much sweeter and adds more life to our daily living :) 

Check out the list below and let me know if these are also some 'extravagances' that you can relate to :)

1 & 2. High end Tea & Coffee

I love love love tea too!!  And I agree with the poster, I'm saving up too for a nice Zojirushi electric teapot with different temperature settings. Tea-lover Mommies check it out!! 

Of course, high-end doesn't always have to be expensive, right? As mommies, we can still enjoy high-quality coffee beans and tea leaves while still being frugal at the same time. The key is to know where to get your supply and also to know how to properly brew your coffee or steep your tea. That is, if you can forego the coffee shop ambiance, and just DIY at home for an everyday frugal but luxurious experience.

 3.  Premium Clothes

I agree! While I'd love to continue using my old clothes (or even re-purposing them after their useful life), clothes can make a difference not only in the way people see you but more importantly in how you feel about yourself.

Again, as with the first example, premium clothes doesn't always have to be brand-name screaming with prices up in the stratosphere. For me, premium clothing means something that is measured to your size, designed to complement your physique and aesthetic and with materials that are durable and still weather- event- appropriate. What I'm proposing may be contrary to 'fast-fashion' but if you learn to sew even just for yourself, then you are well on your way to making made-for-you premium clothing!

4. Personal Development

I super duper agree!! Personal Development can run the gamut of things! 

In connection with the premium clothing example I'd like to share (and am very proud hahaha) that last year, I learned how to sew using Youtube and Facebook groups. That's it! No formal training whatsoever and I have already turned out around 6 tops/dresses for me and my daughter. Only using professional patterns  which I bought/downloaded online ah! It really amazes me what we can accomplish if only we dare try :)

In 2019 I am more focused on professional growth. Sometimes books or seminar fees can add up but personally, It is worth it! By reading up or attending workshops, our knowledge and perspectives are infinitely broadened and we are changed people. That alone can open up new opportunities for us! 

5. Direct Flights

I don't fly out as much as I used to. And even then it was just minimal so I can't fully relate...But I understand how people would value their time by booking direct flights over $100 "savings".

6. Major investments like private school tuition

A Master's Degree, a child's tuition, or even a homeschooling package. It matters if it's a value your family upholds.

Did you know that you can homeschool your preschooler without really spending so much on anything? Yes, there are a lot of free worksheets you can download and print. Or maybe you have free access to a nice library. But admittedly, we always want to give more to our children depending on what we value. Like for our family, it is a must for them to learn Mandarin language so we give them that. We also prioritize quality picture-books as well as educational manipulatives at this age so we invest in packages that offer those. When we add the cost of both, it could very well equal private education too. It's craaaazy I know!!! Some relatives would ask - so given the comparative costs, why don't you just send them to traditional school? 

Yeah, why not, right? Well there is another "extravagance" we are paying for -- and that is time with our kids. More time with them than if we send them to school already. In this seeming zero-sum game, we might be losing out on (corporate) income opportunities while homeschooling but we feel that this time with the kids is priceless and of course we do hope that what they learn from our years of homeschooling (being together, home-making, cooking, working in our professional capacities), they can use to their advantage in their adulthood.

7 & 8. Special Treats and Experiences

Yes!! Milk tea anyone? 

Last year I invested in a very good machine. I say invest because the machine is pricey, but also because through it, we are also investing in our family's good health. I mean, as long as we keep buying healthy ingredients (like fruits, veggies, other superfoods) then we can always enjoy smoothies that are healthy, less expensive than retail, and OMG considered as treats by the kids! They are practically asking for their smoothies everyday! 

Now that we are going without a house helper yet, I'm thinking if we should just go ahead and try the various cleaning services in Manila. But!! The frugal side of me (yes, meron kahit konti! haha) is protesting saying that I can vacuum and steam mop and do it all myself. Hahaha...pero konti na lang, bibigay na ako sa cleaning companies hahaha :D

9. Living alone

Yup! For moms this could be the "leave and cleave" that we aspire for. Like with the direct flights, sometimes paying a little extra is worth so much more than headaches and misunderstandings.

10. A boat!

Whoa! Didn't I say there are surprising extravagances people pay for!? 

How about you? What are the personal extravagances that make you happy? 

Friday, March 1, 2019

Recipe: Pinoy Chicken Afritada

Every day, mommies will usually as out loud "ano ang ulam natin?" (what's our main dish?) 

I definitely am one! As a re-starting homecook, I'm now focusing on learning how to prepare and cook easy, nutritious, and yummy Filipino dishes. These are the everyday ulam fare that should have been so basic, but for some reason, it (the cooking process) just never clicked when I was still single nor when I was newly married. Hahaha...I just felt that the secret to cooking such dishes were better left to my dad and grandma who are masters of the kitchen :) 

I always remember Daddy A's advice to "make the recipe my own". Guess this is one way of doing that! I tweak recipes to our family's needs and liking. Such as: I add more water if the kids want it 'na masabaw' (more sauce-y)  or I lessen the oil and salt for health purposes. Sometimes when I want to give the dish an extra ooomppph, I try (hard hahaha) to recreate how herbs are used in gourmet dishes and adapt it to our own. So I try to make it more economical and more 'my own' by using ingredients that are in season or are already in our pantry. 

So here you have a Chicken Afritada that has lots of sabaw, has carrots, chickpeas and other herbs/spices to mix things up!

This is not a sponsored post but still I'd like to thank Clara Ole for the tomato sauce I used here. I got it as part of a gift bag from Mega Prime's #PrimePinasarapMoments mom event I attended last year :)

Nutrition Fun Fact: Chickpeas, as part of the legume family, is touted to be packed with PHYTATES, another class of cancer-fighting compound. (Source: How Not To Die)


1 kg Chicken, cut into serving pieces                       --- I used just 800 g of chicken at PHP 137.00
1 Tbsp oil                                                                  --- we use Grapeseed oil because it's available
1 Tbsp garlic, minced                                               --- I love garlic so I use around 3-5 cloves
1 onion, sliced                                                           --- add more if you want thicker sarsa
2 tsp patis / fish sauce, or to taste                              --- I ended up adding 4 tsp because I increased   
                                                                                       the water
1/2 cup to 1 cup tomato sauce                                    --- I used Clara Ole brand for this dish
1 and 1/2 cups water, or as needed                             --- I made mine 2 cups of water because the kids 
                                                                                         love sauce on their rice
2 potatoes or sweet potatoes, peeled and quartered     --- 2 potates total PHP 28.00
salt and pepper, to taste
1 green bell pepper                                                      --- I used red because of availability PHP 9.00

1 carrot, peeled and cubed                                           --- PHP 33.00
1 medium can chickpeas / garbanzos, drained of liquid  -- was in pantry so I don't remember the price
1/2 tsp dried Rosemary, or to taste                               --- pantry staple
1/2 tsp dried Tarragon, or to taste                                 --- pantry staple


**Defrost chicken overnight by transferring it from the freezer to the fridge. Make sure to keep it in a well-enclosed container to prevent cross-contamination with other fresh ingredients in the fridge**

1. Pre-heat pan, add oil. Saute garlic & onions. 

2. Add patis/fish sauce and chicken. Cook for 5-8 minutes. 

Note that the time will totally depend whether you are using a fire stove and the level of heat, an induction cooker and the settings you use. Generally, I like to see most of the chicken blood cooked out, especially since this is a tomato dish.

3. Then, add tomato sauce, potatoes, carrots and water. 

I used up the entire Clara Ole tomato sauce packet because sayang if we will just put the remaining in the ref, without a next tomato-based dish in the line-up hahaha :) However, if you or any in the family don't like the maasim/ sour taste, try to measure it out first like 1/4 -1/2 cup tomato sauce first. Then just add gradually until you reach the desired taste.

4. Cover, let boil, then simmer until chicken, potatoes and carrots are cooked. 

5. Season with salt and pepper. Add in the optional dried tarragon and rosemary spices. You can add the garbanzos and let it simmer on low heat / low fire until the chicken is well cooked. 

6. Add bell pepper 1 minute before removing from fire.

Serve over steaming hot rice & enjoy!

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Our "Big Bad Wolf" Experience 2018

In general, if you say "BOOKS!!", then I'd be there in a heartbeat! Quite literally too, you know? So that was the sort of thing that happened in last year's BBW or Big Bad Wolf book sale.

Together with our "squad" (uhh..that's me, hubby, our 2 kids and their cousin), we braved the humongous piles of books, kindred book-lovers AND.... bahala na si Batman sa budget (cringe! haha kidding, but not really!! LOL-ing so hard!).

I'm still mulling whether it was a good decision to bring kids to the book fair. On one end, I definitely want to open them up to the wonderful world of books. That there's a book for everyone, most especially kids. Of course, this decision weighed heavily on the grown-ups' book-shopping mode. A hungry toddler, a cranky one, a too-tired to walk little one (when we've barely gone through half of the stocks!)

Oh, and of course! "Mommy, buy this please!!" requests :) We're lucky that although they wanted to get every sparkly and cutely designed book, we were also able to go through the process WITH them on what we should prioritize as a family at this point in time. And that decision-making process is an important stuff for us! That YES, we can indulge in stickers and coloring and activity books, but we should also add to the roster books that will aid or supplement our homeschooling workbooks. And for their age, it's very important for us to choose books that promotes virtues for children in form of lovely picture books. Personally, it's always in my agenda to build a library of nice picture books not only for my kids but maybe even for the grand-kids in the future as well :)

Another thing we learned is that we should have opted for a non-weekend day to shop for books. If you like to get lost in mountains of books (and camp in the area), it doesn't really matter anyway. But if you have other things on your plate, then you'll get to enjoy this process with more peace and shorter check-out lines :)

Aside from our small stroller, we also brought our Lillebaby carrier. It is a topic for another discussion but let me just share how babywearing is just so so helpful. Since E was just a year old in 2018, he wasn't too comfortable to just sit in the stroller and face hundreds of strangers. Babywearing with our Lille helps him feel safe and secure and can weave in and out of sleep on his daddy's chest.

Check it out yo! Daddy A rocking the Lillebaby Spot On carrier

There are lots of cookbooks on different types of cuisines. I focused on Asian ones - Malaysian and Singaporean dishes specifically. I dunno, it's just something with the spices or the 'heat' of the food and ingredients that strongly resonates with my taste buds. Yummm!! 

Since we were also trying to 'improve' our health through the kinds of food that we eat, I purposely veered away from Cake / Baking books. Huhuhuhu...I know, I know... Cakes and sweets are my weaknesses  (I was even diagnosed with pre-diabetes back in 2011) but I had to be strong! Hahaha.. I tried my hand in baking when I was still pregnant with E. But looking at the ingredients, too much flour, butter and sugar...uhmm, I just wasn't as comfortable to keep on making and feeding it to my family, given our history and pre-dispositions. No offense to other bakers. I'll still be getting my flour on (my hands, our kids, our floor) but just not as much as before.

When you need to go somewhere (comfort room, cafe) but are still not yet finished with your book shopping, there was a 24-hour holding area for the books you have already carted.

When we felt hunger pangs, we went to the cafeteria outside the hall. They had decent dishes which the kids also liked. These were no-frills typical Filipino cafeteria fare but all good!

On the way back to the main hall, you'll see lots of magazines stacked on the floor, on very deep discount!

In my younger years, I religiously subscribed / bought each month Candy magazines and then went on to Cosmo in college. Now I don't buy them anymore, but still keep my hard copies with me. I fear that one day they'll all be totally gone! So at least I have something to show my kids and grandkids.

The book storage / holding area

Check-out area

Although there indeed was a long line, it was funneled out to a good number of cashiers so it wasn't such a long wait for us. They accepted payments thru cash / card but before you hand it to them, you get to have a final moment to reflect if you need everything in your cart or just maybe, there's something else you've missed?

I 'feared' the check-out area for two reasons: the long lines and finding out our total bill! Hahahaha :) Of course I had a very rough estimate but the very idea of finding out the actual amount was a bit scary.

Our Big Bad Wolf 'Stash'

Daddy A's Architecture books:

Mommy Meowmeow's childcare and self-care (exercise, massage) books:

Mommy Meowmeow's cookbooks:

Because sometimes when you can't travel you'd rather just have a taste of their food too :)

Big sis Z's stash:

These are the books for our little artist. She likes to draw, she likes fashion and art is something that we'd like for both her and little E to have an appreciation for.

For the library:

The fold-out atlas is a token for her cousin and the DK Human Body book is another addition to our library.

Z & E's stash:

Because kids love stickers, who knew? Although it drives me crazy to see some on our floor or on our walls, it's still a life-saver for moments when they just need to have something to be busy with (we try to do everything first before handing them a phone for entertainment, usually it does the trick!)

Still another for our library..huge picture books, which is good for read-aloud time :)

Something for Daddy A again because he likes this story from Dragon Ball Z and he told me that this is also the basis for the K-drama - Hwayugi (A Korean Odyssey)

Soooo the big question is -- are we going back this year?? 

TLDR: I'm actually holding myself back for #BBW2019. It's true! While we have enjoyed the books we have purchased last year, we are saving up now for a major appliance. Of course, I could just 'look' or even just get one book or a couple. Hahaha, but who am I kidding?? LOL!

Well, if Daddy A would want to go or if I have friends (ehem, ehem) who would need me to go with them, I just might...who knows?!?


Things I blog about..

#CaptureTheRealYou #OPPOF5 100 day wedding 168 18th month 1st birthday 2nd birthday 3rd month 50th birthday 6 months 7th month 8 millennium development goals 8th month a day in the life absolute accessories accessory activity books afritada aggy's Agico alex franco cake algo all of me almost gourmet alphabet altrenergy Alveo amazon amazon kindle anniversary anthem Anthony bourdain appliques araneta architect aromatherapy art deco asking a godparent AVIDA ayala baby baby back ribs baby food baby gatsby baby gatsby party baby girl baby k'tan baby meal baby ootd baby routine baby shower baby shower games baby wearing BabyComfyNose babywearing babywearing week 2014 back to work bad bird bag bag of beans baked dory baking ballerina ballet ballet kids Bananagrams Banco De Oro band Banking On Your Future baon baptism baptism candles baptism dinner baptism reception baptism seminar barbecue barbeque bargain finds barong batangas bayleaf hotel BDO beach bed sharing beef beef kabsa before five in a row belgian chocolate cake BF1st1000days BFIAR BGC big bad wolf bike billingham digital hadley binder binondo binyag birthday birthday mtv birthday party birthing class BKS black and white blender body boss Boni boo book book club book fair book review books boppy pillow botejyu boutonniere Boy Kastner Santos boyce avenue BOYF brazil brazil breakfast breast cancer breastfeeding breastfeeding in church breastfeeding pinays bridal shower bringing baby to church broker brownie BSP budget buffet buhawi bukas palad song burgos circle buwan ng wika buzzfeed tasty cake caldecott caleruega call me tita cambridge satchel camcorder camera camera for baby camera for new moms can't breastfeed cannondale canon canon d10 canon d20 canon d30 canon sx50 canva career caren resurreccion carlos celdran cash benefit casserole cast iron cast iron skillet caterer catholic Celadon century city mall century mall cesarean section cfa champorado changi airport chapel on the hill charaptor charcoal berry charlie puth chayno cheese steak shop chef laudico chicken chicken rice chiffon childbirth children's book chinatown chinese books chinese fables chinese food chinese new year chinese nursery rhymes chinito Chinkee tan chinky christening christmas christmas party christmas spirit chunky chewelry church cisco clara ole cleaning co sleeping Colgate colors congee Conti's cookbook cooking cooking time cooking tips cordfree cordless corduroy corporate girl costume crib crystals CS csb hotel cubao cupcake cwc cyclone dance date dawani de-cluttering dear future husband denise laurel design destination wedding devotional diagnosis benefit dice game dictionary diffuser dining dinner disinfection distributor divisoria divisoria mall DIY diy candles dlsu Dr. Seuss dry erase dslr dust proof dutch oven Dyson dyson cyclone v10 absolute Dyson v10 e-books early bird breakfast club early pregnancy earrings easter eat all you can eating out ebook ecopark educator elena ferrante eleventh month Elin engagement engagement dinner escolta essential oil essential oils essential rewards essentially prudent estrel's estrels etc handmade etc handmade goodness Eucharist everio exercise exercise while breastfeeding expo markers extravagances fabric family fashion fat tuesday father's day feature feng shui fernwood gardens fifth month filipiniana filipino food finance financial advisor financial planning financial wellness fine jewelry first birthday first birthday party first day first month fitness flashback fridays flu buster fo GUANG shan fontana food food tasting food trip foodie forbeswood formula 1 fortress fourth month free to grow freeze proof friends friendship fruits fuji fuji x100s fuji x20 fujifilm fully booked gatsby gatsby first birthday gatsby theme gemstone gifts girl bonding glorietta 4 God good night good reads Goya Chocnut ganache pancake grandparents day greens grilling grolier guevarra's gumbo gymboree gymboree philippines habagat Hai Shin Lou halloween Hampton Inn & Suites hanamaruken ramen handheld happy folks Happy Folks Studio haunted history tours hd videocam headpiece health healthy heart rate monitor hearts of jesus & mary heirloom hello kitty hiit hole in the wall hollyland lark m1 homecooking homeopathic homeschool homeschool life homeschooling honey glaze cakes hong kong hospital bag hospital kit hotel hotel intercon hotpot how not to die how to hurom hurricane hwayugi i will take you forever ikea induction cooker infanta instant pot instruments insurance insuravest intramuros investment ipo ipo jac jacatel Jamie Oliver japanese jesse bear Jesus Jesus blesses the children Jo-Anne Wong joe cross john legend johnny air cargo jolly phonics jolly songs joy JSC juice diet jujube jumbo jumbo Bananagrams Junior Savers jvc jvc camcorder jvc everio kamagong Kanto freestyle KAP kaya toast kiam peng Kiddie Account Program kiddie party kids kidzoona kidztown ph killiney kindle korean kris lawrence kyowa la cocina de tita moning la mesa dam la sallian lab set labor kit lace lactation brownie lactation room laguna lamco landers otis lcm le bayou legarda house let's eat pare letter of the week library life insurance lifestyle treats lillebaby lillebaby carryon airflow lilleletsme little note lodge lolong lotw luck chinatown mall lucky chinatown mall lugaw lzm restaurant madison events madre de dios chapel magallanes church makati malacanang mall of asia Mama Mary mamaway bamboo charcoal belly band mambo no 5 mandaluyong Mandarin Chinese Mango Bravo manila manila doctors manila hotel manila international book fair manila ocean park manipulatives mardi gras Marina Bay Sands marriage mary grace cafe mass maternity bag mayon volcano medela medela freestyle medela house medela moms mega prime meghan trainor men's wear messenger bag metromix mexico ferry mibf michael greger microinsurance midnight snack milestone cards milk mama milk mama diaries carnival mirrorless camera miss universe MoA mobler moira mom and tina's mommymeowmeow cooks mommymeowmeow finds momzilla fair money kit monkey king mosso mother nurture motherhood mozzarella-stuffed meatballs mushroom music video my loves my loves babywearing My Sunday narra hill Nasal Aspirator nasugbu national museum of natural history neapolitan novels nesting new orleans New Zealand tapa nicholas sparks nikon nikon l820 ninang ninong ninth month niu noir et blanc non-traditional party nosefrida novotel nursing station Nursing Wear nutrition nuvali oakley oily mama oilymama omelette ongpin Online Shopping ootd orb diffuser outback steakhouse outing pandemic paperwhite parenting parenting emporium paris partner appreiation night party party doll manila party planning party suppliers party tray party video passion cooks personal finance philippine homeschool conference philippines phonics photography picture books Pigeon Pigeon Baby Cotton Swab pilillia pinkerton pinoy food planning a first birthday plant based playground pluviophile po gelai podcast polar polar hrm polarized polka dots pop post partum post pregnancy clothes post pregnancy exercise post-partum postpartum powerplant powerplant mall prayers pre-nup precious medina precious stone preggy diaries pregnancy pregnancy symptoms preparations prepared childbirth class preschool preschool homeschool press con pressure cooking pretend play preview prewriting Primary science kit prime pinasarap moments procrastination product review productivity professor property review proposal protection pru life uk Pru Life with Madz Lim pua tiong chiu public service advisory pulse app pumping at work pumping station quadproof quezon quezon city rack's magallanes racks magallanes racks packages rain ramen ready for the world real real star beach resort reality box recipe reflections resort restaurant retail lab review rice rice cooker ring rizal roadtrip rockwell rome kanapi rosary run sabrina carpenter sale sampaloc san juan restaurant san miguel san pablo sandbox party sandwich saturdate savings saya carrier second birthday sennheiser mke400 sentosa sentosa resort & spa serendra serge igonia sewing machine shabby chic shabu shabu shangrila hotel share the adventure shimano shock proof shoe cabinet shopper's mart shopping shutter count works shuttercount shutterfly sick sick baby signity stone silla sincerity singapore singapore grand prix singer site visit sixth month sleep through the night slow cooker meals sm aura small party smeg smoothie smoothie lover snacks snow globe snug a hug pillow soakswimwear soft structured carrier softshells Solenad solenn sonlight sophia the first sophie's mom spicy spiralizer ssc st. alphonsus st. alphonsus mary de liguori sta. rosa Stacy's stand out stc steam mop sterilize stick stickers storm strawberry shortcake street photography stroganoff stroller struggles sugar and sunbeams sugarplum suite blanco summer lookbook sunday reflections super mama surco surgical benefit swagger sweet home bakeshop sweet services swimming taal vista tabora taft tagaytay tagaytay children's choir tagaytay highlands talking english tamang kain tapsilog tbt teaching teething teething baby tenth month thankless the boutique bed and breakfast the creamery the happyness project the longest ride the north face the phonics handbook themed party thirty throwback Timberdoodle Timbuk2 time tips on choosing wedding photos tips on making wedding album toddler toddler life tokidoki tomas morato tornado tour toys tracing traditional weaning trails trajecito de bebe transportation travel treveia trones trumpette tula tula baby carrier tula manila tula philippines tula toddler carrier tuna melt tuttle tutu toddler twelfth month twin hearts twisty dropper ulam unboxing universal studios university life uno restaurant update Usborne V10 vacation vacuum Valentine's valentines vans vatel manila VBAC vegetables verleo catering video video coverage videocam vikings vintage restoration vitamix vivo city vizco's vlog vlog kit vlogging wahm wakepark wallpaper wangfu watami waterproof wayback wednesday weaning weather wedding wedding anniversary wedding photo wedding photography wedding supplier wedgits wei wei Weleda wellness wfpb whole food plant based wii wilbros will you be windmills wipe erase wooden toys work work at home mom workout world breastfeeding week world teacher's day wrong ramen wyb x20 yaya seminar manila yaya training yellow cab yeng constantino yleo ymca binondo young living youtube zojirushi zucchini zumba