S&R’s Biggest Sale Is Coming Up!

One of my favorite errands to do with my daughters is grocery shopping. It’s my bonding time with them. As often as possible, I take both of them. It’s also my way of educating them on what it’s like to run a household. 

Today, Tiana was hanging out with her cousin so she stayed behind and Catalina came with me. 

We went to S&R Membership Shopping where I prefer to buy my meat. First, it’s cleaner meat. Second, I need the big packs of Bounty Fresh Chicken  Thighs, which are easiest to find in S&R. Edric is really picky about grizzly bits in his ground beef, too, and the New Zealand ground beef doesn’t have these. 

I also purchase S&R’s large bags of vegetables because they come out cheaper for our family. Instead of getting a few onions, for example, I go for the huge bundles of onions. We go through a ton of onions in a week! Their lettuce is often more reasonable, too.

My favorite part about going to S&R is that I don’t feel harried or stressed because of its aisles and layout. I just get tempted to buy lots of stuff! Sometimes I go in and out of the aisles just to look at what’s new. 

Although there are days when it also gets packed full of people, on a Monday like this, it was relatively free. (Catalina ran around and enjoyed exploring.)

This Septemeber 30 to October 2 S&R is definitely going to be crowded, but for a good reason that you and I won’t want to miss! 

S&R will have its biggest nationwide sale of the year, their Member’s Treat Sale with 50% and buy 1 Take 1 Deals on selected products. Yeah! It’s that time of the year again!

 Top of my list will be more Lifetime Folding Tables, the heavy duty shelves for our storage room, towels, bedsheets, and Ben & Jerry’s Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough!

The sale will be at all S&R Branches:

– S&R BGC
– S&R Aseana
– S&R Congressional
– S&R Alabang
– S&R Shaw
– S&R Cebu
– S&R Pampanga
– S&R Davao
– S&R Imus
– S&R Nuvali
– S&R Davao

Australia Trip Highlights

imageOur short trip to Australia, specifically the region of New South Wales, left me wanting for more! I can’t wait to go back with the rest of our kids in the future to explore more of this amazing country.

We stayed in the Paramatta area in the Paramatta hotel. Some people say it’s not super safe but we were fine! We walked around at night and had no problems. Plus our hotel was close to the grocery, 7/11 and Mc Donald’s (where we would grab our breakfasts because they had healthy wraps), and I found discount pharmacies where they sell good vitamins for kids for very inexpensive.

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Chinatown (Reasonable shopping if you are a cheapo like me!)

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Yummy Mamaks! Malaysian food.

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Central business district

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Easy to get around with an Opal Pass. We bought our passes at 7/11 and used them the entire time to ride the trains.

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Maybe our train system can be like this someday…

Ran into some suspicious characters…good thing Edric was there to save us…

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One of the most beautiful malls I have seen. Queen Victoria Mall. 


Attending Hillsong Conference with church mates, Sophie, Leyz, Charles, the Davids and Ongs.

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Bondi Beach with Ateneo friends, Randell and Karen, who graciously took us around and treated us to an amazing lunch!

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We walked around Sydney Harbor and visited the market at the Rocks.

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What a treat to eat dinner at the revolving restaurant of the Sydney Tower Eye courtesy of CCF Sydney  friends.

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We visited Sea Life for Edan’s sake

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On our last day we went to an Aboriginal cultural show, Blue Mountains, and Featherdale

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Too cute! 

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Best tour group for Blue Mountains! 

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Messina Gelato. The best! Edan gained a couple of pounds eating ice cream every day!

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Spend an evening at Cockle Bay Wharf for some hot chocolate and waffles courtesy of CCF friends once again.

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Sydney has them, too. Not sure if this was a legit need but Edric gave anyway just in case.

We took a quick trip to Kinokuniya bookstore. Wow. An awesome selection of books. Edan was in heaven. 

Edric spoke at CCF Sydney. What a joy to serve here and meet Filipinos who love God and want to be in community with one another. 
Not to be missed…Chocolateria San Churro!


 In the end…there’s no place like home! 

Highlights of New Zealand Trip

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New Zealand is officially on my list of favourite places that I’ve been to.  Clean air, nature, a laid-back culture, friendly people, multi-cultural, family-oriented, a great Filipino community, and almost every establishment closes by 5 PM! It’s definitely a country I want to visit again with the rest of our kids. I can’t include all the photos we took but here are some highlights of our trip:

The Auckland Museum. We learned about the Maori people who were the first inhabitants of New Zealand.

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We took several trips to the grocery (something we like to do in every city we travel to!) I loved the options for children’s vitamins! Took a number of boxes home for our kids.

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Oh, Hobbiton! This is an absolute must-see! For all the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit fans out there, you will not a regret a plane trip just to see this place. Edric got really into character. He bought the Ring to rule them all and elf ears. The record number of photos ever taken in Hobbiton = 3,000! I don’t think we even reached 250. But when you get there, you will want to take so many!

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The Auckland Zoo was a special treat for Edan, who is an animal-lover. He took charge and mapped our way through the place. Seeing a Kiwi bird up close was pretty special.

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Glowworm Caves in Waitomo…


Lunch at the boardwalk with our friends and amazing hosts, Ryan and Lei…It’s always such a special thing to meet with followers of Christ in other parts of the world. Ryan and Lei pastor CCF Auckland. They are a great team!

God gave us a blue sky despite the unpredictable winter weather…

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Speaking for the singles, marrieds, and parents…

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Visiting the Sunday market. If you want to see what New Zealanders are like, don’t miss the markets! 

Serving at the CCF church. Edric preached and I gave a talk on managing stress.

Leaving with our hearts full and eager to come back!

Mt. Masungi

This was my first time to visit the Mt. Masungi Georeserve. It was amazing! My friends and I trekked up the mountain which took a about an hour and a half one way. Our time extended because of all the picture taking. We couldn’t help but take photos everywhere!

Mt. Masungi used to be in danger due to land grabbers but it is now protected by the DENR thanks to bloggers, journalists, outdoor enthusiasts and environmentalists. They made too much noise about saving the place to be ignored. Here’s a blurb from their site: “The georeserve is an area we have been protecting for over fifteen years now. Having to deal with a myriad of illegal loggers, quarries, and others, it has been a challenge, but ultimately a meaningful and fulfilling one. Today, we are excited to share our love for the place with you. We hope that you see something special in it like we did.”

Newly opened last December 2015, Mt. Masungi is meticulously maintained and it continues to be “beautified.” The georeserve also has strict rules.

  • Absolutely zero trash (no food allowed except for things like trail mix or energy bars.)
  • You have to wear head gear at all times unless you are taking a break or taking a picture.
  • Only 15 people to a group/per guide as the max number.
  • No walk-ins allowed.
  • Reservations must be made and no refunds will be given unless you cancel three days in advance. (Friends who fail to wake up early enough to make the time slot will still have to pay for their reservation!)
  • No stepping on unpaved areas (follow the yellow brick road type of thing.)
  • They will give you 1 liter of water in the form of 2 500ml bottles, and a whistle for emergencies.
  • Children below 13 cannot go although I wish they could because they would love it!
  • No picking of leaves or flowers to bring home.
  • No disturbing of animals by making boisterous noises.

A visit to this place will cost you 1,400/person but it comes with a snack, water and it’s worth every peso! It’s a relatively easy climb with lots of stops to rest, to enjoy the view and the creative elements of the park, like the hanging bridges, the spider web, and the gigantic hammock.





Site: www.masungigeoreserve.com

Address:  Kilometer 45, Marcos Highway, Rizal Philippines

Email: trail@masungigeoreserve.com

Highlights of Our Peru Adventure

This was my first time to visit Peru with Edric. We stayed in Cusco and took the Hidden Valley Tour, and the Machu Picchu Tour. Peru is beautiful, probably one of the most beautiful countries I have ever seen. I can’t describe it the way the pictures below will. I couldn’t bear to archive these without sharing them.
I really believe it’s necessary for a husband and wife to escape once in a while. It doesn’t have to be to a place like South America. The trip is crazy long from the Philippines (almost 30 hours if you go through the US.) It can be a local trip or somewhere in South East Asia. The point is to find the time to be with one another without the kids so you can build on the romance. 

As a parent of five it’s challenging to enjoy extended couple time. Plus, Edric is on vacation mode when we are away so he is more relaxed and more eager to talk (and listen). For as long as we can leave our kids with my parents, his parents or willing siblings of ours, we know the kids will be just fine. In fact, they mature and grow while we are gone. They also appreciate us more! 




Centro Holistico

   

 My mom and I visited Centro Holistico today for our mom and daughter date. Carolyn, my youngest sister is finishing her med studies and she was receiving training here for her clinical elective.

   
 Centro Holistico doesn’t feel like a doctor’s clinic even if it is. It feels more like a mix of home and spa which makes it inviting and relaxing. It’s operated by medical doctors who integrate Eastern and Western medicine. Their aim is to “create a more patient-centric and holistic approach to health.” 

   

  
My mom and I met with Dr. Carisse Diana Drilon-Dalman (MD-MBA, CAMA), who was introduced to us as Dr. Candy, for short. She is a doctor of Integrative and Lifestyle Medicine. At 38 weeks pregnant, she is still up and about! We also met her husband, Dr. Ryan EM Dalman (MD-MBA, ADS, CAMA), Doctor of Integrative General Medicine. They are both Medical Acupuncturists and Acupuncture Detoxification Specialists.  
Dr. Candy patiently sat down with my mom and I for about forty five minutes. I really appreciated how she asked all kinds of questions related to our total persons. She covered medical history, diet, exercise, sleeping habits, and what causes stress, among other things. 

Afterwards, she did a live blood analysis for both of us. I discovered that I am eating too much protein, not drinking enough water, and not eating enough leafy veggies. She suggested barley and chlorophyll for my greens. For my scoliosis, she did acupuncture. It was so relaxing, I fell asleep! My mom got acupuncture for her metabolism and she consulted about her fatty liver.  

My blood cells didn’t look so healthy. I need to work on my diet! Ay! 
My mom had some large crystals from exposure to pollution in her blood. 

 

Live blood analysis shows what your lifestyle has been like for the last three months. It reveals the truth about your diet, water in take, stress levels, organ health like kidneys and liver, and a host of other indicators that can help you identify root issues in your body. 

Dr. Candy gave such practical advice using natural options and she analyzed all the medicines, vitamins, and supplements my mom is taking from a Western medical perspective, too. Her full recommendation is emailed afterwards.

At present, the clinic is far for me to get to but it’s worth the travel time. They have patients who even come from far north for their unique and effective approach to prevention, health and wellness. 

Centro Holistico is located at the 2nd floor of Commerce Center Avenue, cor. East Asia Drive, Filinvest Avenue Corporate City Alabang, Muntinlupa City. Hopefully they will put one up closer to home, after Dr. Candy gives birth, of course! 

Doctors: 

   
Services:

  
Prices:

  
Clinic Hours:

Monday to Friday 10AM – 7PM

Saturday 11AM – 7PM

Sunday and Holidays 11AM – 6PM 

Contact numbers: 828-8863 / 0917-5812990

www.centroholisticoph.com

Facebook centroholistico.ph

Instagram: @centroholistico

This is what medicine should be about (a quote on their wall): 

The Chocolate Chamber 

After our seminar in Cebu, Edric and I got to drop by The Chocolate Chamber of Raquel Choa as recommended by a PR friend of Edric. It was worth the stop before our plane ride out. 

   
   
   
    
We were greeted by Raquel’s son, AJ, who recommended the Founders Chocolate Cake and TCC, as well as the Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate. He goes to Abba’s Orchard, my favorite Montessori School in the Philippines. (Okay, I am biased because we know the owners). But he was gentlemanly, courteous and only 13!  

  
I am not a chocolate person. Edric is. But everything he recommended was delicious! We also got to sample their truffles. Yum! 

  

  

 
I was impressed by the chocolate but I was more impressed by how Raquel Choa’s kids are involved in the business and helping out. According to AJ he goes to at least one of their branches everyday after school. While a lot of kids in Manila go to tutors or do homework after school, he is learning how to run a business and work hard. That’s sweet! Literally and figuratively.  

Chocolate is best shared with those you love. And here’s my sweet love…

 

Future Park

We just visited Future Park, an interactive technology-based play center for kids.The kids had a blast! There aren’t too many stations yet but the concepts were really cool!  They gave us a glimpse of what future play will be like. 

 
   

 

  


   

     

Sketch City was my personal favorite and it was designed by the Philippines! You add your own details and color to sketches of different forms of transportation and your final drawing is scanned and uploaded into a program that animates and displays your work.    

 

This board of lights sense your heat and changes color accordingly.
 The best days to visit are weekdays. It’s 200 pesos cheaper!  

“Future Park is the Philippines’ first digital interactive play space – a dazzling exhibit of games and installations powered by cutting-edge tech and your imagination!” (Source: Century City Mall)
 
   

Not According to What We Deserve

Last November, I was asked by a blogger friend, Jane Go of Sugargospice, to write an article for her site. I said yes. But when she told me the deadline for it was December 2, I was like oh dear, bad timing! Edric and I were helping out with a big parenting conference the weekend before the article was due.

However, I had given my word so I told Jane I would follow through. Plus, she was incredibly persistent in a sweet way! Right, Jane?! She wasn’t expecting a literary masterpiece anyway. All she needed was a fun and light entry on Christmas in our household. So I finished the write-up just in time and sent it to her.

About two weeks after I turned in my article she got in touch with me. She invited me and my family to join her and her other guest bloggers for dinner at Phoenix Court in The Bellevue Hotel, Alabang. Jane added that Mr. Ryan Chan, Corporate Director for Communications and Marketing had graciously offered to give us all an overnight stay with our families. Alabang was pretty out of town for us Manila peeps. What a treat! Edric and I were really excited!

Mr. Chan was incredibly generous. He gave our family two adjoining rooms, a suite on the 19th floor of the Tower Wing and we were received as Signature Club guests.

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The kids thought it was so fun to have to use a card key to access floors 19 to 21. Simple joys. A special lounge is dedicated to signature club guests with complimentary drinks and hor d’oeuvres provided in the evening. We didn’t have time to avail of those but we did enjoy breakfast there the next day. I can imagine how businessmen, businesswomen and VIPs would appreciate the exclusive perks that come with being a Signature Club guest. Checking out, for example, was done on the 21st floor and it was very efficient.

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As for the rooms we stayed in…wow! Rooms 1921 and 1922. The kids started squealing with delight when we entered! They threw themselves onto the king-sized beds and made exclamatory statements about how wonderful the rooms were.

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Besides the sophisticated and modern decor which one might expect from a hotel suite, I appreciated all the thoughtful details. There was a personally signed note left on the table and a token gift, two plates of fresh fruits with fat strawberries (which I ate. Yummo), and a bottle of wine for Edric and I to share. The staff were very attentive, too. They were very friendly and eager to make our stay comfortable.

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We left for dinner at Phoenix Court (which was amazing!) in a hurry and didn’t have time to tidy-up. So, what a pleasant surprise it was to come back to an impeccable room with a re-stocked supply of Acca Kappa bath and beauty products. The kids used up all the shower gel in the afternoon to make their bubble bath!

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I also appreciated the numerous bottles of complimentary water they provided. As a breastfeeding mom I drink a ton of water so this little item mattered alot. For signature club guests they actually provide complimentary (non-alcoholic) drinks all day.

The great service extended to other areas. When we went down to the Pastry Corner to sample their delicious baked goods, a woman who worked close to the front desk offered to escort us. I asked her for directions but instead of mouthing out instructions she kindly said she would walk us over to it. In fact, she even waited for us while we were chatting with some old friends we ran into. I didn’t realize she was still standing there until Edric and I finished conversing with our friends and she let us know that she would be going back to the lobby.

Edric also left one of his white long sleeve shirts in our hotel room. He called the hotel a few days after we had left and they informed him that it had been set aside for him to pick up. Whew, it belongs to his show sponsor so I’m glad he didn’t lose it!

My favorite part of the room we stayed in was the bed. I’m thinking of designing one similar to it for our new house. Even Catalina liked it.
She plopped her head on to the spread and stayed there for a while without screaming to be held.

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It was very comfortable. I don’t remember my dreams that night which means I had deeper sleep! Usually I have three or four weird dreams a night because I get awoken by Catalina so many times.

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She looks angry here…In fact, when I tickle her, she gets angry! ha ha ha, which makes me want to tickle her more!

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The lounge on the 21st floor offered panoramic views of the city. I liked the feel of this lounge — quiet, fewer guests, lots of natural light, scenic views, and very responsive staff. I preferred it to their Cafe D’Asie. The food was delicious at Cafe D’Asie but it took them a while to refill the buffet stations during lunch. I didn’t mind too much because I am not really a buffet kind of gal unless it is a breakfast buffet. A few tasty dishes to choose from and great service are more appealing a combination. That’s why I liked the 21st floor.

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The Continental Breakfast had a spread that was very limited but I liked the meal I ate. Their service was to be applauded. They responded to our requests immediately — eggs cooked in our preferred way. Mine had to be somewhere between soft and hard boiled. The kids wanted omelettes or scrambled eggs. And they also requested pancakes, which they got. The waiter kept asking us if we needed anything and if we were well served. I appreciated his proactive-ness.

My kids had such a great time they didn’t want to leave. Edan even cried! I couldn’t believe it! My seven year old had become attached to the Bellevue overnight! He felt so badly about leaving he even hid in a corner to sulk. It was very uncharacteristic of him so Edric talked with him afterwards to help him process his feelings and have the right attitude.

Edric told him two things — gratitude and hope. It’s okay to feel sad when something you like is taken away or you have to leave an experience behind. But you need to be grateful that you were given the opportunity to enjoy what you had in the first place. Furthermore, it is always good to hope that one day, Lord willing, you may be given the very thing that was taken away or something even better.

I want to apply Edric’s lesson to my own circumstance. I am so grateful that we were given the night’s stay at Bellevue and treated to three huge meals. (Unfortunately I gained weight. I know this because my pants are tighter. Ack.) It was also a privilege to interact with other writers whom we shared dinner with at Phoenix Court. Anton Diaz of Our Awesome Planet, Didi Tiu of CanDishhh Tales, Franny Ang of Frannywanny, Michelle Martinez of Mrs. Martinez’s Raves & Rants, Richie Zamora of The Pickiest Eater, Rowena Wendy Lei of Animetric’s World, and Sumi Go of The Purple Doll.

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Because I don’t attend a lot of events, I am not very in the know about the blogosphere. In fact, I’m not very useful as a food critic, entertainment junkie, world traveler, or tech expert. But I learned a lot from tips shared by seasoned bloggers who sat at the same table we did. Of course, I got to know Jane and her family better which was wonderful…

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Jane also handed me and her other guests amazing gifts from Glamour Box, My Pink Wasabi, Angus Beef Tapa from Jam Foods and Co, and a caviar cake from Grace Y. Oh, and she also delivered a chocolate cake from Aggy’s Cakes and Sweets to my room for my belated birthday. Edric loved this!
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I made the mistake of sharing it with our house help and he wasn’t able to have a second serving. This was disappointing for him but good for his health.

From Glamour Box…

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It is nice as a hydrating mist but I actually like it as a light body spray because it smells so delicate…

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This gave my skin a nice glow for New Year’s Eve…

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Tried this right away and it went on very smoothly. I get chapped lips so often this will come in very handy…

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I don’t wear a lot of lipstick but I wore this one for New Year’s Eve. It was bright and red (and I’m so glad it matched my skin tone which is on the yellow-side.)

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I have yet to try this but I’m looking forward to using it…

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I wish I had known about My Pink Wasabi gift boxes before Christmas. They are so creative. It would have been great to give these chocolates as gifts.

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The Tapa we got from Jam Foods and Co. was eaten Monday morning. Yum!

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Who would have thought a single, simple article written to keep a promise and be a blessing (in a very small way) could reap all of this?! I was overwhelmed by the goodness of the Lord through Jane, her sponsors and Mr. Ryan Chan. I wasn’t required to write about all of this, but this experience made me think about God’s nature and hope in who he is. When we walk with him, he delights to bless us. And he never blesses us according to what we deserve but according to who He is — above and beyond what we can ever hope or imagine! That’s the 2014 we have to look forward to if we follow him! Happy New Year!

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A Place for Everything

For the obsessive compulsive women out there, like my sister-in-law (I love you Jenny!) or the women who need help organizing their things (that’s me!), Keeping It Together or KIT for short, is the store to go to. A woman can never have too many containers and bags to put her things in. And once you become a wife and mother, you need even more storage and organizing solutions. KIT carries a plethora of options for every need — kids’ snacks, lunches, bottles, drinks, gym clothes, swim gear, diapers, toiletries, cosmetics, hiking or camping gear.

My friend, Michelle Taruc, is about to open another branch of KIT in SM North Edsa and she sent me some samples. I was thrilled!

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I really like their water proof, food safe, PVC and lead-proof carry-anything-in-them bags by Itzy Ritzy (the prints are super cute). She also sent me a leak proof bottle for travel (the kind that won’t explode under pressure), a beach bag which will come in handy when the kids go to the park to swim; a bag that can be used as a compartment in my luggage; and a pillow bag (never thought I needed one until now).

Whenever my kids bring pillows on long road trips, they tend to drag them on the floor when they carry them to the car. Ack. I have to keep reminding them to hold their pillows higher. Well, here is KIT’s solution — a pillow bag! Clever.

My favorite of all…the bottom of KIT’s store bags, which reads “To God Be the Glory.” Indeed! God is a God of order. Just read the books of Leviticus and Numbers.

I am excited to put these KIT products to good use. They are a fun, practical, and easy way to fulfill my husband’s fantasy…a more organized me! Thanks Michelle and KIT!

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KIT opens at Sm North edsa 2nd floor bridgeway carpark level 3, near JCO’s this weekend.

Family Photo Shoot


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It was a perfectly sunny Friday morning, July 19, when we headed off to Pinto Gallery for a family photo shoot. We had prayed for good weather because it had been raining that week — the unpredictable sort of rain we tend to get in the Philippines. But Friday turned out to be just the right amount of sun. Okay, there was a lot of sun. I was sweating for most of the shoot…all of us were. Yet it was worth it!

When photographer, Jay Jay, and his wife, Tine Lucas, offered to take our family photos I was thrilled. I’ve seen their work and it is pretty magical and creative. I love their concepts and how they make a story out of each photo they take and make. I say “make” because Tine is a stylist so she knows how to put together all the little details that count.

We had no idea how grand a production they were cooking up. Wow. I was blown away. They assembled a team of hair and make-up artists (Gerry Penaso), events stylist (Eve and Company), Lifestyle by Feliz (Tine’s group), and Chestknots Studios (Jay Jay’s group). Of course, there was the very picturesque and romantic setting of Pinto Gallery in Antipolo to complete the “look” they were going for.

mendoza68I had never seen Jay Jay and Tine in action with their team before and when I finally did I was incredibly impressed. First, they work so well together — a compliment to each other’s abilities. Second, they work so hard. Third, they know how to make everyone comfortable and in their element. It’s not easy to photograph a big family like ours. With 4 young children and pregnant me, there were lots of details and factors to consider. We had psyched the kids up for that morning which helped, but it was the very natural way that Jay Jay and Tine got us all to interact and behave in front of the camera that made a big difference. Of course, the props that Eve & Co. brought to the site transported us to some sort of fantasy garden setting, too.

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This shoot exceeded our expectations and it was such a fun bonding activity for our family. Edric and the boys enjoyed being outdoors, and Tiana liked all the clothes she got to wear.

mendoza84mendoza391It took about half a day to take all the photos and I just saw a lot of them posted on Chestknots’ site this afternoon. What a blessing and gift that day was. It almost made me want to get pregnant all over again…MAYBE. But if we don’t (which is probably the more likely option), we have the best photos to remember that point in time, and lots of pictures to frame for our new home.

Since I am not pressured to advertise anything on this site (and I’d like to keep it that way), I’m happy to be able to talk about products, services, occasions, people, and things that I really appreciate and would recommend to family, friends, and readers. Well, these guys are one of those things I would recommend. And they are better together. Jay Jay and his team are great photographers but each shot becomes unique when infused with Tine’s sense of style and artistry. I’m thrilled that they are doing more family-type photos. Pre-nuptial photos and wedding photos are wonderfully romantic but personally, I feel that celebrating the gift of family is even more important. Looking through the photos made me reflect on the journey that Edric and I have had as a couple — from just 2 of us, to three, to four, to five, to six and soon to be seven. The multiplied love and joy chronicled in each photo is a testament to God’s goodness, faithfulness and grace. Edric and I cannot thank Jay Jay and Tine enough for capturing in photographs the priceless memory of our children — their youth, innocence, tenderness, and happy smiles. And for making Edric and I remember how amazing 12 years of marriage have been and will continue to be for as long as Christ is at the center of it!

View the photos here: Mendoza Family Shoot

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Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar

Just got back from an overnight stay in Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar, in Bataan. It’s a heritage resort conceptualized to resemble an old town. Old Filipino houses from different areas of the Philippines were transported to the resort. For homeschooling families (or any family), it’s a great place to experience a visit to the past. Of course, the rooms and amenities are modern and comfortable, but it is truly a unique experience…not your typical resort. There was a fabulous cultural show last night in the “town square,” and they have tours that allow you to visit the houses and uncover their intriguing histories. Their restaurants are a little bit pricey but worth it! Las Casas Filipinas also has a pool and clean beach.

A friend of mine, Monique Ong, told me about this place a few months ago. When I found out that this was the same spot Edric’s dad wanted to take the family to, I was thrilled! Unlike my family, whose vacation spots revolve around nearby golf clubs and sports facilities, Edric’s family really enjoys the beach. Our kids do, too. They can spend hours in the sand doing nothing but digging holes for who knows what purpose.

I am blessed with such wonderful in-laws. I married into a family that is very close knit, godly, and loving. It was a joy to spend the weekend with them.

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