Archive for February, 2010

27
Feb
10

TEAM GABBY WINS! (PART 1)

The past few days have been overwhelming! :D  My family and I cannot thank the Lord enough for so much blessings!

No, we didn’t win in lotto or something; how we wish! But it’s beyond what money can buy. :D

Last Thursday, I failed to attend to my son’s Math Quiz Bee in his preschool because I was on an appointment that turned out to be life-changing for me, career-wise; I’ll share it here soon.  For now, here’s the photo that Tina took during Gabby’s addition-subtraction contest.

Then Saturday came and off we went here…

We arrived in Ateneo past 11 AM and there we dressed up Gabby to look like a cute farmer…

With camisa de chino in celadon green that I bought for only PhP 50 in Divisoria (where else?),  his props of faux grains for another P50, his old yellow shirt that his mom wrapped around his head with a straw hat purchased at PhP 35 all bought in Tabora Street completed his look. 

“PLANTING RICE”, his 5-stanza-poem was randomly given to him by their teacher several weeks ago.

Before they start the program, I took a photo of Gabby with MY CRUSH FOR HIM among his classmates. Her name is Chloe. :D  Isn’t she lovely? Bagay po ba sila ?  …No strings attached yet! It’s just me. :)

I told Tina while we’re waiting for Gabby’s turn to conquer the stage that I never experienced such palpitations and extreme nervousness since my Medical Board Exams. I was too anxious that I wanted our son to do it well and be done with ease.  

And after 50 Kindergarten students from 2 sections have recited their pieces, Gabby bagged 4th place which gave him the trophy and made him a winner in 2 consecutive years.

When he was in Nursery last year, he was named 3rd placer on the same contest. You may view it HERE.

“This Declamation Contest is not intended to exhibit the proficiency of the child, but to give him/her experience in speaking before an audience. Nervousness is thus eradicated, confidence gained and stage presence developed.” -TTA.

We’re having PPS (Proud Parent Syndrome) again.  He just recently ranked Top 2 in his class for their 3rd quarterly grading, then he won a trophy for his declamation and a medal for his Math Quiz Bee.  The boy deserves a prize he wanted.  But it will be granted to him in due time as we’ve agreed. :)  

Here are Gabby’s mentors in school (left) and his greatest teacher at home (right)…

(applause, applause!)

TINA and I  always feel like a WINNER for having a son like him. 

We’re just so proud of loving him.

We always thank God for giving Gabby to us.

God is great! :D  His love is overflowing.

————————————

PS : We had an early dinner somewhere… That’s on my next post.  Till then.

Have a great week everyone! :D God bless.

26
Feb
10

LEAVING ON A JET PLANE

inside jetstream 41 cockpit

So kiss me and smile for me
Tell me that you’ll wait for me
Hold me like you’ll never let me go
Cause I’m leavin’ on a jet plane
Don’t know when I’ll be back again
Oh baby, I hate to go

Cause I’m leavin’ on a jet plane
Don’t know when I’ll be back again
Oh babe, I hate to go” 

No one’s leaving yet, ha ha! :) This song instantly popped out of nowhere last night right after I came home exhausted from an appointment.  I had a long day yesterday and I found myself humming this tune inside my head.   Then my imaginary singing led to flight of ideas.  

What if my wife who’s a California-Registered Nurse and a Visa-Screen Certified by CGFNS finally finds an employer to petition her and would have to leave me for several months until she gets to petition me and our son?  I am not worried with being alone to take care of Gabby but with Tina. Can she bear and thrive without the 2 of us? ha ha. :D  Who’s gonna wash the dishes?  Who’s gonna clean the toilet ? LOL! :DShe’ll LOL when she reads this. But the thing is, unlike you, kind reader, my wife barely scans my posts.

Or what if I’ll find an opportunity that will also require me to do the same thing of leaving my family temporarily for greener pasteurs, err we’re not cows! for a better future ?  Will I also experience what they call “homesick-ness” ? 

FYI, my dad worked as an OCW in KSA, Kuwait and UAE for more than 17 years and his earnings brought us to High School and College. Back then, he’d sent us so many “voice tapes”  in C30 or C90  (how very 80s) with a usual message that he missed us so much.  At present, I constantly chat with my mom who’s in UAE for work and would always tell her we miss her too.     

I know it’s unwise to count the chickens before they hatch.  I learned that from Farmville, LOL.  :D 

I am not preempting things; I’m just anxious thinking of the possiblities.

It’s an open book that Tina and I are trying to find chances of working abroad. But it seems luck isn’t on our side yet.  We’re not complaining. We both believe that the Lord has better plans for all of us and that sometimes, things don’t happen the way we planned it. We may not be content with the way things are at present and despite the challenges that life brings, we just have to trust His plans and let His will be done!  Do I sound profound now? :)

For those of you who are members of the local work fields, have you also considered going abroad to earn for your family? 

Or have you lived/have been living that life with homesick-ness?  If so, what’s the most memorable thing that you’ve experienced working abroad and lessons learned of doing so ?

24
Feb
10

LET’S WELCOME CHANGE

February 22, Monday – I left my family (Tina + Gabby) at home  (date was declared as special local holiday for schools because of EDSA Revolution anniversary) and rode LRT line 2 from our place, then MRT from Araneta Center-Cubao Terminal Station up to this EDSA-Taft-Pasay LRT Station. 

I went to Department of Foreign Affairs in Pasay City to get Tina and Gabby’s new passports. Believe it or not, it took me only less than 5 minutes to claim it.  So their previous green passports are now machine-readable-maroon…(sometimes, I imagine them blue! *wishful thinking*)

I renewed mine 2 years ago and will expire 2013 while  Tina and Gabby’s passports are valid until 2015.

Allow me to share these old and new passport photos of our little biggest bundle of joy…

Isn’t he a grown little good-looking man at 5 ?  :D  That photo on the right was taken at 4:30AM hence the morning face.  :)  How time flies so fast!  His first passport + photo were taken when he was 4 months old; apparently, he’s really a happy baby; the photographer at the studio in a mall did not find any difficulty making him smile giggle.   His old passport was stamped at Hong Kong, Brunei and Auckland, NZ airports.  We traveled with his Graco stroller then; even used it on buses in NZ. :D

I have claimed their new passports in a jiffy but they have applied for its renewal for several hours!

Flashback : February 01, 2010, Monday – Gabby was absent from preschool class and made a personal appearance at DFA. Although kids of his age who’d like to apply/renew their passports can just leave everything to their parents/guardians, and adults can have the process via on-line scheduling too,  Tina and I opted to do it traditionally and brought Gabby to avoid any hassles. Turned out to be we’re in for a big old hassle!

Ang saya!  We woke up at 3:30AM and arrived at DFA at around 4:30 in the morning.  The basketball court-waiting area was already packed!  Nothing has changed since I have renewed mine a couple of years ago.  Unlike Boarding Gates at any airports where passengers with child/ren and/or geriatric individuals may board first,  at DFA, they only give considerations to pregnant and old applicants only.  

Yes, it was very systematic but looong queues were still there. We’re done with application, verification, processing and encoding (inside the DFA auditorium) at 9:20AM flat.  It was really exhausting. :(

Imagine, until last Monday, the scene was the same…

But let’s thank God for change!  Have you heard that DFA Consular facility +passport services will be moving to its new state-of-the-art building located at Diosdado Macapagal Avenue in Pasay City ?

“Instead of sweltering heat, our consular clients will be greeted with cool air at the moment they enter our doors. Instead of monobloc chairs, they will wait their turn sitting on ergonomically-designed stainless steel benches. Instead of long queues, they can shorten their wait by accessing our online appointment system. Instead of going from building to building, they only need to move from ground to second floor,” DFA Secretary Alberto Romulo said.

DFA consular personnel, Romulo added, would also enjoy the convenience of modern work stations, furniture and equipment.

The building was acquired for a price of P530 million with the assistance of the Development Bank of the Philippines.

The facility will be opened to the public once it is formally inaugurated in the next few weeks. For the time being and until further notice, the consular services requirements of the public will continue to be attended to at the DFA’s existing consular facilities along Roberts Street.

Source : KBK, GMANews.TV

 Ang mahal pala ng change! :D

23
Feb
10

BLUE TO WHITE

In response to a colleague’s invitation for lunch, we headed to Glorietta 3 about a couple of weeks ago.  I+Tina=Gabby were treated to one of our favorite pig-out places : Dad’s Ultimate Buffet (includes Saisaki + Kamayan). 

We noticed they’ve changed their old blue plates for the crossover/ultimate buffet to immaculate white. I’m not sure if it’s only for that day or only for that branch.  Nevertheless, the eat-all-you-want spread remains the same–satisfyingly good for affordable price than others.

These were digested several days before Ash Wednesday. *defensive*

If you’re Catholic like us, do you also observe little sacrifices like porkless days during Lent ?   We usually avoid meat on Ash Wednesday, and all the Fridays that follows until Black Saturday.  Our menu during Fridays of Lent typically consists of Ginisang Monggo, Paksiw na Bangus, Chopsuey, Fresh or Fried Lumpia, Tinapa, Ginisang Mais or Suam, Lugaw+egg and the like.  Last year, Tina prepared Lumpiang Shanghai using Tilapia fillet instead of ground pork.   We don’t skip meals or fast literally; we only lessen our intake. Then of course, we try to feast again on Easter!  What about you?  What do you eat during Holy Week ?

20
Feb
10

WHERE’S THE NOTICE?

Two evil traits that I have that only my family, closest friends and my former Medical-Surgical Nursing students know and have experienced are the art of sarcasm and my being obnoxious.  But like a silent dog, I only bark when it’s needed.

Last Friday, my blood pressure soared the highest when I and my wife found out that our internet was suddenly disconnected by Smart Bro.  Consider it petty but for my family (I+Tina=Gabby), the www is part of our daily lives for a ton of reasons.

If you must know, I am tasked not only to provide but to handle the budget in our family and pay the bills (yes, bizaare it may sound but Tina prefers it that way and I’m not complaining).  And come hell or high waters, we’re thankful that we haven’t been delayed with the payments of the bills (Thanks for my being OC and during our trying times -thanks to our support network).  Not until this hassle with Smart Bro.  The problem rooted about a couple of months ago when we started not receiving any billing statements from that broadband provider.  We patiently waited but we didn’t receive any.  

Preoccupied with other things, I didn’t settle the account as there were no bills.  IMO, this wasn’t  irresponsibility on our part as consumers because Tina and I only wanted for their office to straighten things up with their billing and collection processes.  

About a week ago, I received a call from Smart Bro call center agent regarding the unsettled account.  I requested the  agent to issue me a billing statement and I will gladly settle the dues in no time.  A week after, we didn’t receive any as if my request fell on deaf ears.  

Correct me if I’m wrong but what I know with any local service providers like Meralco, Manila Waters, PLDT, Sky cable and the like, notice of disconnection shall be issued prior to the act itself.  But with Smart Bro, they have done it without a word. True that they’ve called me to ask about why we haven’t paid yet but the inefficient call center agent did not notify us that disconnection will be done within a particular period.

And so when we found out that our net suddenly expired at around 3PM last Friday, I immediately called the Smart Bro hotline and they received hot words from me (no pun intended).  I explained everything to the call center agent whose name was unremarkable because she was useless to me at that time.  I was fuming mad over the phone because of their UNFAIR CUSTOMER SERVICE.  I asked the agent if she can reconnect our line immediately after I pay the bills –she was unsure to my disgust!

After we have been loyal post-paid broadband clients for several years now and the fact that we haven’t missed paying our bills to them, I think their action of sudden disconnection without proper notice was FOUL and INCONSIDERATE and that their Customer service BADLY NEEDS IMPROVEMENT. 

After paying PhP 2,000 at the nearest 711 branch around 3:30PM, Friday, I called again the Smart bro hotline and demanded to the call center agent that she better restore our connection within the next few hours because I already settled the 2-month-unpaid dues even without issuance of the bill (Smart Bro post-paid per month costs PhP 999).  Again, I received reply of uncertainties and no assurance at all.  She was not even apologetic and neither thankful on her company’s behalf!  Why oh why?

The poor employee even insisted that it was noted in their computer that someone from our home allegedly received the bill last month.  Huh?!  We’re only 3 in our household (I+Tina =Gabby) and all of us including our preschool son cannot remember a thing doing so. We aren’t saints but we are far from being liars.

She told me that even if I already gave her the details of the (7-11) receipt and that I have paid the dues, it would take around 24 hours to reconnect our internet line. Duh?!  I know it would only take a press of a button from their whatever-machine to restore our internet again so why do we have to suffer to wait?  Doesn’t she know my crops in farmville will wither given that long waiting time without a net *kidding* 

FYI,  other than postpaid, we also own a prepaid Smart Bro — that’s how loyal we are to them.

I swore to her that I will switch to Sun or Globe Broadband if she won’t restore my connection ASAP.  And I am sincere when I said that.

After I promised the poor call center agent that I will blog about the matter, I dozed off for a couple of hours. And after I woke up just before dinner, I and Tina were on-line again.

Should there be always coercion and force before someone does his/her duty promptly?

To Smart Bro : LOYAL CUSTOMERS DESERVE NOTHING BUT FLAWLESS SERVICE. REMEMBER THE BIGGEST ROOM IN THE WORLD IS IMPROVEMENT!

Like a merciful father, I forgive but forgive me I still have active+young neurons so it’s hard for me to forget, hence this post.  

I ask you kind readers, what’s your internet connection? Is it prepaid or postpaid?  Have you experienced any hassles expected or otherwise with regards to these service providers?  Would you care enough to share in the comment section. Thanks.

Inspite of this not-my-usual-post, everyone deserves a great week ahead so have yourself one! :D

18
Feb
10

A WALK WITH DRAGON + LIONS

Mr. Sun was shining its brightest as everyone celebrated Valentine’s Day + Chinese New Year.   There was never a day better than last Sunday to take a walk through the streets of Manila China town. :)

I arrived at Manila Central Post Office fronting Liwasang Bonifacio, now known as Plaza Lawton, a few minutes before 10:30AM.  This majestic building served as our meeting place for Dong Ho’s  KaESKAPO sa Binondo.   

I was lucky to be chosen as one of the 5 among the many blogger-followers of  Dong Ho’s  ESKAPO  to explore Binondo on foot using The Big Binondo Food Wok  Map by Ivan Man Dy of Old Manila Walks.

The blog contest winners were selected based on Dong Ho’s querry :

 Why do you deserve this map and join this food trip ?

It was a pleasure meeting young breed of  fellow bloggers Chyng, Cher, Josh, and Ann (with her BF); all of us were recipients of this map from the Dong himself.  Although I was the most senior of the group,  it just felt like I was only with my students, less the toxicity of classroom lectures :D  We were all amazed how The Big Binondo Food Wok Map was conceptualized; it points out heritage trail and of course, the most interesting food shops in the heart of Manila, from the cheapest finds to the most upscale restaurants. The coupons in the map for some freebies were certainly not left unnoticed.

After a short briefing about the activity and a casual intro to ourselves, we started the walk that led to one-of-a-kind-Binondo trip.

I am not new to the place. I have been to Binondo and Ongpin areas up to Recto and Divisoria countless times actually.  But exploring it with  strangers  bloggers whom I haven’t met is a new experience for me and perhaps the same thing for them.  Gladly, we instantly gelled as we enjoyed several hours together.

We’re fortunate to witness a Dragon Dance just few steps from the gates of Manila China town after Escolta.

 We had a short stop at Binondo Church…

Then after I uttered my prayers, we headed off to Ongpin…

A festive welcome to the Chinese New Year isn’t complete without Lion Dances…

The colors of Ongpin and its side streets never fail to fascinate me… I’m sure my fellow bloggers were also delighted with such vibrant hues!

From freshest fruits to veggies, lucky charms and figurines; gold jewelries and more; almost everything is in Ongpin!

 

Although our son, Gabby had been to Ongpin more than a couple of times recently,  I’d also wished him to experience Chinese New Year in Binondo. But his mom and I agreed for them to stay at home to avoid too much crowd and all.  He’ll surely enjoy the celebration soon when he grows older.  

After a few steps and shots, we headed to our food tripping!  :)

Our first stop : the immediate left street at the back of Binondo Church for some remarkable dumplings!

It was only my second time to try DONG BEI DUMPLINGS - the famous KUCHAY or CHIVES DUMPLINGS of Binondo.   I’ve written something about these dumplings May of last year, after I’ve tasted them and compared with the same steamed delight from a Chinese resto in a mall (view HERE! )  The major difference : Dong Bei’s version is more flavorful but doesn’t have overpowering taste. Plus, you get to view how it is prepared…

Freshly made dumplings, anyone ?

Your options :  Plain Kuchay or Plain Pork;  Combinations of Kuchay + Pork (last year I had Kuchay + Shrimp) either steamed or fried; 13 -14 pieces for only PhP100+.  Guess what our team had? All of them! :D  Have you tried Dong Bei’s Kuchay Dumplings ?  How do you like them ?  

Their both best dipped in chili sauce!  Some of my co-bloggers didn’t like them that much, perhaps because it’s quite new to their taste buds or they’ve been more familiar with other Chinese dumplings than chives.

Dong Ho (not the owner of Dong Bei, LOL!) also introduced as to Dong Bei’s PANCAKES! These aren’t your usual pancakes served with butter + syrup *yum!* but it’s fried with stuffings of ….surprise –> Kuchay +Pork again! :D  But its thin fried dough was more sticky than the fried Kuchay dumplings and thankfully, both were less oily.  

And since I vowed with Tina and Gabby not to drink Coke and other sodas again (deliver us not into temptation, hehe!), I tried for the first time this Chinese iced tea on a can (but forgive me, although i hope it has less sugar, it’s carbonated too!)

My co-blogger Chyng didn’t like the canned Chinese cold tea that much; it was OK for my taste but nothing to rave about and would not cause you to crave for it.

After that quick bite at Dong Bei, the walk continued to the corner of Tomas Pinpin + Ongpin Streets where a shrine is venerated by Tsinoys.

SANTO CRISTO DE LONGOS

Note that incense sticks are used by the prayerful to adore the Holy Cross. It’s an apparent fusion of Catholic and Chinese beliefs.

Moving on… Do you like Tikoy ?  What’s a Chinese New Year without Tikoy a.k.a.  NIAN GAO / YEAR CAKES or Glutinous rice cakes ? What’s Binondo without horse-driven kalesas? (Note to Gabby :  We’ll ride kalesa one day either in Manila or in Vigan!)

My wife knows how we share the love for FRESH LUMPIA. :D  This made our next pit stop as one of my favorite food places we’ve been to.  I recall one of my  kind readers, JP recommended this when I posted SOMETHING  ABOUT  LUMPIA few weeks ago.

Tucked inside Uysubin Building beside HSBC, located along Quintin Paredes Street, is a courtyard where New Po Heng Lumpia House is.  

I guarantee you satisfaction from these freshly rolled Hokkien-style lumpia!  For only PhP 45 per roll, you can taste heaven in every bite! What I like about Chinese Fresh Lumpia is the inclusion of fried vermicelli + seaweeds and lotsa ground peanuts! It’s so delicious even sans sauce! I give my two-thumbs up to New Po Heng Lumpia! Definitely, it won’t be my last there; i’ll surely bring my family and friends there soon. :D

As we entered New Po Heng, we’re lucky to see the Ivan Man Dy in person on his last leg for that day on his Old Manila Walks.  Dong Ho introduced us to him and to my surprise, he said, “Oh you’re the doctor who joined Chuvaness’ contest. Did you win?”  I smiled back and said “No”  (It was another blog contest with his map and his TOUR as one of the top prizes–The question was : If you were a Chinese dish, what would you be and why?  My answer :  Chinese Fortune Cookie -Because I believe I am more than meets the eye).  I wasn’t only starstruck but was literally in awe because Ivan actually reads comments and entries! Wow! :D

Chyng had taken the chance to have photo-op with Ivan.  I was shy to do so. Perhaps when I and Tina find time to join his once-a-month-Malacanang tour.  Ivan is nice;  he even offered us tikoy, part of the freebies he was giving to his local and a few foreign tourists who joined his walk.

Another treat for us bloggers was when Ivan introduced the next guy to our table as the TUTUBI of  BACKPACKING PHILIPPINES AND ASIA. It was really one lucky day! :D

Still following some suggested heritage trail in The Big Binondo Food Wok Map, our group went to Ongpin again and went up flight of stairs to visit TE YA KONG TEMPLE…

Seeing almost all people in red, lighting incense sticks and praying, I can’t help but to admire the Chinese-Filipino community for their strong faith.

After several minutes, we’re on to our next merienda stop (I like the way we took this “NO-RICE”- Binondo Food trip; LIGHT & YUMMY) :  SHANGHAI FRIED SIOPAO!  Have you sampled one already ?  It’s more flavorful than ordinary siopao.

The Dong bought fried siopao for all of us and split the bill just before we part ways. We brought them to Eng Bee Tin restaurant where Dong Ho suggested to have refreshing avocado shake; but it wasn’t in season so we all went for the next best thing : mango shake! (I like riped mango). I just forgot to ask Dong Ho how much fried siopao a piece but the mango shake was so good at PhP 50+.

Then after another hearty snack, we’re on our feet again for our last pit stop… On way there, we passed by Plaza Calderon dela Barca right in front of  Basilica Menor del San Lorenzo a.k.a. Binondo Church…

I like fountains. (note to self : work for you to bring your family to Europe one day!).  The sight of dripping water somehow recharged me to walk a few kilometers from Binondo to Reina Regente, Recto and finally reached Narra Street at the back of Tutuban Mall where the biggest and grandest of Chinatown’s Buddhist temples…

 

SENG GUAN SI TEMPLE

The facade of Seng Guan Si Temple is already amazing but there’s more than that beautiful front this place of worship has to offer.

The first floor was awesome.  But the second floor of this temple was even more fantastic!  There was even an enormous section that’s probably considered as the most sacred of them all. I thought that part of the temple is comparable to the Catholic church’s Adoration Chapel.

It was indeed a loooong tiring day but believe it or not, I enjoyed it to the fullest! :)  Although I wasn’t with my family (Gabby + Tina), I’m glad to meet and gain new blogger-friends.  Thanks, Dom (a.k.a. the Dong Ho)!  Sa uulitin!  

We could not let the day pass without taking photos of ourselves of course! So meet my Ka-Eskapo sa Binondo :

from left to right : The Dong Ho and docgelo; right :  Chyng, Josh and Cher.  photos by Cher Cabula (thanks, Cher!) these photos were taken at New Po Heng Lumpia courtyard.

Newbie and young blogger, Ann with her BF Archie and on right photo, the Chinese charm Dong Ho got for each of us.

One last group shot before parting ways… photo by Dong Ho

You may want to view (again) my previous posts about this most interesting part of Manila called Binondo. Thanks! 

CHINESE NEW YEAR  2009  AT  MANILA CHINATOWN

ESTERO EATERY IN ONGPIN

WAI YING

MR. UBE

DONG BEI DUMPLINGS

BINONDO EXPLORED

JANUARY 2ND 2010 IN ONGPIN PART 1

JANUARY 2ND 2010 IN ONGPIN PART 2 : PRESIDENT’S  TEA HOUSE

16
Feb
10

IN A WORLD OF RESTLESS AND YOUNG

In a month or so, Gabby will be done with his classes.  And 6 years after we became first-time parents, Tina and I still cannot believe that our little boy has done Nursery and about to finish Kindergarten soon.  I guess all parents out there would agree that it’s a BIG accomplishment already; although we know there’s a looooooooooong way to go for the 3 of us. At least we’ve started the first few steps happily together. :D 

Preschoolers nowadays study lessons that my generation had learned later in grade school.  We take it as an advantage for them of course.  But let me ask you, when did you learn your proper and improper fractions and how to add and subtract them ? What about mixed fractions -the ones with whole number and a fraction ?  Synonyms and antonyms ? Concepts of Greater than and Less than ?  Differences of Solid, Liquid and Gas ?  Were they taught to you as early as Kindergarten ? *grin* 

It’s not only the preschool syllabus that evolved and became, IMO, far advanced (–again, I’m not complaining) but also the extra-curricular activities.

Last week, we heard our son singing screaming :

“Don’t be afraid to follow your dreams,  for my love….will see you..through…”

My wife and I looked at each other with astonishment! Where in the world did Gabby learn a very old OPM song?  :D  I, myself haven’t heard of it in years!

Tina and I are children of the 80s.  And at 33, I can still recall our preschool activities and whatnot but  I do not remember singing these songs in school when I was Gabby’s age :

My Love Will See You Through  by Marco Sison

Thank You For The Music   by Abba

Somewhere Out There  by James Ingram + Linda Ronstadt  (I remember this from a late 80s movie)

Yesterdays Dream  by Donna Cruz 

Actually, it was nice and fun to hear and see a 5-year-old kid singing somewhat-matured songs! :D  He even picks up his Jumbo pencil and assumes it as his microphone while singing at the top of his voice. 

Tina and I are just proud parents and are so glad to be in a world of restless and young! :D

I wonder what’s on for their next week’s classes… hmmm… *excited*

Meanwhile, here’s what Gabby was singing when I’m writing this…

We are the world of the restless and young
And we need a hand to guide us
Helping each other, build each other
As long as we’re together you and me

For together we stand, divided we fall
Together we climb to the top of the world
We can be what we want for the world to see
That we are the children of yesterday’s dream

————————————————–

:D  Can you recall your preschool days ? 

:D  What are your fondest memories of those years ? 

:D   What songs were you singing then ?

15
Feb
10

GABBY’S V-DAY 2010

Dear Gabby,

Although I immensely enjoyed my Sunday morning and afternoon with my co-bloggers in Binondo (which I will narrate to you here soon),  still nothing beats  spending Valentine’s with you and your mom, naks! :D 

Your mom and I are so glad with your choice of movie; how many of your age would have interest in Zeus, Poseidon, Athena and the rest of Mount Olympus? :) I myself have almost forgotten my Greek Mythology and haven’t found it more fascinating than this.

It was fantastic! My  Our kind of movie–no heavy stuffs,  just plain fun.  You know how your mom and I are both kid-at-hearts. :D  The story line about Gods, Goddesses and Demigods didn’t bore me from beginning to end. It actually drew me to the scenes that I almost forgot my biggest problem to date; it’s so effectively entertaining! (at least for us, LOL).  How can you go wrong with the director of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone?  To cut it short, it was amazing watching the film with you and Tina as usual. Sarap ulitin sa Gateway Mall dibidi (joke!). :D

I know your mom will less appreciate it (than dining) but I still insisted  managed to buy her official Valentine veggies from Rustan’s.

If Percy Jackson was magical, our dinner was a champion! :D

We skipped starters and immediately ordered one of our family’s favorite pizzas…

It has been a while since we last tried this. You know it’s one of our comfort foods! :D 

salmon + caviar on pizza =  Yum!

PIZZA CAVIALE SALMONE, P365+.

When you told us you’d liked to have a glass of iced tea, we never thought twice in ordering this for you…

TE PESCA, P98+  Peach flavored Iced Tea, refreshingly good!

And since your mom wanted to try other pasta and pass on our usual order of Rigatoni All Alfonso, how did you like this ?

Don’t you just like those bow tie or butterfly- shaped pasta called farfalle ?  ’twas your first time to try it, right?

Cibo really knows how to pamper our eyes and palates so well…

FARFALLE ALLA VENEZIANA, LA FAMIGLIA, PhP 455+. Sauteed bits of seafoods in cream + parsley + butterfly pasta

Your choice of dessert was also commendable!  Even if at first you’re torn between Mango Panna Cotta and a Chocolate slice; but we ended up having another old time favorite…

TIRAMISU.   It was nice you enjoyed it sharing with me and your mom. :D

With Cibo’s absolutely delicious food, nice and edgy ambiance, almost flawless service  and watching that adventure-fantasy movie, we really had another fun start of the week.

Thanks, anak for making our Valentine’s this year memorable and complete. :D

We love you.

-Daddy Gelo (formerly Tatay-doc)

PS : BTW Gabby, who’s your crush in school ? *grin*

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:D  How was your V-day? Did you celebrate Valentine’s Day or Single Awareness Day ? Is the acronym for that, SAD?  *peace*

13
Feb
10

WE LOVE HIM SO

With those crooked lines and untidy sheet, this may be the most imperfect Valentine’s card to you but isn’t it LOVE when you see perfection in little things that are not ?

Never mind if the message was only copied from a teacher’s writing on the board; who would not appreciate LOVE this ?

I LOVE YOU GABBY & TINA (or Tina and Gabby). :D

Enjoy your Hearts’ Day everyone!  :D

12
Feb
10

A PLEASANT SURPRISE

His mom went to her morning shift in the Operating Room today with her Nursing students and will be out by 2PM.  I was left to accompany our son, Gabby to his preschool to attend to a brief parent-teacher-meeting and claim his report card.  And to my surprise, their teacher’s aide greeted us at the school’s gate, “Congratulations poTop 2 si Gabby!”  :D 

Wow! Even it was so anticlimactic, certainly I cannot complain. It was ecstatic to hear those words so early in the morning! :)

Gabby and I sat in his room with other parents and kids. We shortly waited for our turn and when it came, the teacher prepared and handed me this…  

Sweet! :D  It was only last November when Gabby made it to SIXTH PLACE ON SECOND QUARTER  out of 30 Kindergarten students in his class and now he sky rocketed to SECOND HONORS!  I cannot help but to have PPS (read: Proud Parent Syndrome) again. :)

I heard from his teacher while talking to other parents that the basic problem of the previous members of the honors list (excluding Gabby) was failure to follow exam directions. It really pays to follow rules.  When it’s asked to encircle, you never underline. 

Inspite of difficult and advanced preschool curriculum, Tina and I are proud that Gabby is picking up something from his 4-hour-a-day-schooling.  I will make a post of what kids of his generation study in school soon.

The teacher commented that Gabby was the only one in the class who knew one particular VERB (remember your action words?) and its SYNONYM. 

Teacher :  “Daddy, si Gabby lang po ang may alam ng synonym ng HUNGRY!  What’s your answer Gabby?”

My son :  “STARVING!”

Daddy Gelo :  (note to self :  You’re son’s  really a foodie at a young age!) :D

10
Feb
10

PRELUDE TO CHINESE NEW YEAR

After an afternoon at the zoo, my wife suggested for us to have an early dinner in a restaurant an eatery in Ongpin last weekend;  I was too weak to resist! :D  

We went first to Sta Cruz Church, said our prayers and crossed the street.  It’s hard not to appreciate the beauty of Carriedo fountain (note to self : keep on dreaming for Europe).  However, just like Manila Zoo, I heard it’s also wailing for some maintenance and preservation.

Then we strolled from Sta Cruz Church to Manila Chinatown and  finally reached a hole-in-the-wall-Chinese fastfood.  Thank Heavens, we immediately spotted an empty table; an unusual sight at this very busy eatery.

Since our heartbeats increased after walking, first thing we ordered was something to chill us down. This fastfood’s version of Hong Kong Iced Tea is a champion! :D  It has finely shaved ice with thin slices of lemons that made it tasteful.  At PhP 50, it’s so refreshingly good and affordable too that I almost ordered another glass.   Tina reminded me that we’re observing utmost prudence on the budget, so I settled with the hot tea on the house; I smiled and did not complain. 

We saw chinky-eyed customers flocking in non stop;  a strong indication that this food place really serves best-tasting Chinese treats.  We didn’t waste time and told the wait staff our orders… And voila, less than 10 minutes, they arrived on our tables…

SIOMAI .   One of the best, if not the best-tasting siomai I’ve tasted!. It’s gloriously delicious.

Amen! :D

BOLA-BOLA SIOPAO is one of our common favorites.  Tina’s biased with Kowloon’s; I can’t blame her. But even Gabby liked the soft white bun of this fastfood’s siopao! The filling is its edge in contrast to other versions.  It has salted egg, strips of mushrooms, and a giant meat ball that’s so flavorful.

While we’re happy to try those 2 dimsums at its finest tastes, the next dishes suffered comparison from our favorite Chinese food places.

 

SHRIMP CHEONG CHONG FAN.  Tina and I had our initial taste bud’s exposure to this shrimp rice rolls 5 years ago in NZ.  Since then, it became our favorite. We usually order it whenever we eat Chinese. We love the version from LE CHING’S TEA HOUSE in Greenhills Shopesville and TirNoma and Shrimp Cheong fan from EMERALD GARDEN CHINESE RESTAURANT  in Roxas Blvd.  And because we’re used to generous servings of plump shrimps and its thick rice rolls from Le Ching, we’re a bit disappointed with this fastfood’s Cheong Chong fan. 

We barely tasted the shrimps because they were too small for bites; the rice rolls were too limp and thin, like the fountain and the zoo begging for improvement. :D  The saving glory was its sweet and salty soy sauce.

We also ordered rice toppings…

STEAMED CHICKEN MUSHROOM RICE (left) and SPARERIBS RICE TOPPINGS (right)

“Lasang Tinola” , my wife commented. :(  Tina, Gabby and I love Chicken Mushroom Rice, but again, our reference  was that of Le Ching’s so we find it quite different; gingery to be exact.  But I must state that their chicken serving is more generous.

I had the Spareribs Rice Toppings; ’twas fine. I was satisfied. :D I may order it again next time we visit…

It would be unfair if we won’t visit WAI YING again in Binondo to try their other yummies. I know a few more dine-in here would lead to its inclusion to the list of our favorites.  

:D Have you tried Wai Ying ? What’s your favorite from their menu?

:D Do you have plans already to celebrate this year’s CHINESE NEW YEAR VALENTINE’S ?

Last year, we had a blast; view HERE! and  HERE (you want to click it, don’t you? LOL)

For this year, I already have something in mind but we’ll keep it cheap simple; we’re CELEBRATING LOVE everyday anyway! :D 

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WAI YING,927 Benavidez Street, Binondo Manila (From Sta Cruz’ Church go straight to Ongpin then turn right to Salazar Street (where President’s Tea House is located, then right again to Benavidez St).

09
Feb
10

ANOTHER VISIT

I give the credit to my wife, Tina who suggested we bring our son, Gabby back to a place that’s perhaps so familiar to you and me; feels like our relatives do exist there (pun intended)  hehehe :D

No, we did not go mall-hopping last weekend but instead revisited creatures that can remind us of our childhood.

The picture below can tell you that Gabby was too uneasy with the claws of this colorful feathered friend on his left shoulder, nevertheless still managed to smile for the cam (read : no coercion was done for him to smile, *wink*). :D

It has been years since we first brought him to KINDER ZOO –an interactive (read : guests can touch animals with guidance of zoo keepers) and it’s a more colorful zoo inside Manila Zoological and Botanical Park  a.k.a. the good old Manila Zoo that has been existing for more than 50 years, would you believe ? :)  When was your last visit to the zoo ?

Kinder Zoo is a smaller scale but with a higher rate of PhP 65 compared to the Manila Zoo’s entrance fee of PhP 40/adult and PhP 20/child below  4ft.  The 2 fees should be paid if you want to experience both and expect to see what your money’s worth.

For a family like us who have been fortunate to experience a few parks abroad, Manila Zoo suffered another comparison. :( Yes, we’re grateful that it is still on operations for more kids will be exposed to “most living things” quite up close, but a little more improvement and a huge reform on maintenance and cleanliness definitely won’t hurt.

Anyway, inside the Kinder Zoo, non living things like original Lego structures are installed…

Even Pooh, Piglet and Tigger can pose with you without a flicker, LOL! :D

Even Tortoise knows how to smile…

Manila Zoo still has its one and only large mammal…

Yes, she’s the same elephant you probably saw during your educational fieldtrips or ordinary visits to this zoo during your wonder years.

OINK!

Apparently, the zoo has improved through the years, but further development can be done to enhance it more. 

I know ecological balance can’t be totally observe in a zoo with cages and all but it’s a responsibility in a way for parents and adults like us to teach our kids about nature and get them exposed to it as close as possible.

VIEW MORE PICTURES  HERE.

09
Feb
10

MONDAY : WE HAD BREAKFAST AT 3PM

Truth is, we went to Legazpi Village in Makati just across Greenbelt 5 to try a colleague’s suggestion –for us to subject Gabby to a VTR in a talent/modelling agency for TVC (read : TV commercials).  Oops, let me clear that out :  Gabby only had his photos taken and did a VTR; no casting calls yet, people! :D  Of course we’ll let you know if he’ll be doing something beyond ordinary. (Well, you know for Tina and I, he’ll always be our GREATEST KID!) We just took a chance; brought him in and we’re glad that our little boy liked it!  He told us he was asked in the VTR room to smile, turn right, then left, turn the camera and smile, state his name, school and age and smile again.  If there would be no calls for a go-see or whatnot, then there’s no harm, just plain fun! :D

After few more steps from the agency, Tina, Gabby and I with one of our friends found ourselves seated comfortably here…

 

Who says you cannot eat breakfast in the afternoon?  In Mr. Jones, some of our favorite morning starters are served all day! (Wala lang yatang tuyo, tinapa, danggit at itlog na pula’t kamatis, hehehe)

It was our first time to try Mr. Jones, a considerably newer food place  an upscale diner at Greenbelt 5 that’s  related  to Museum Cafe (also in Greenbelt), Chelsea Market Cafe (in Serendra) and Momo Cafe (Eastwood Mall and Robinson’s Place).  According to the wait staff, Mr. Jones serves breakfast-all-day beginning 11AM.

So at around 3PM, I was enjoying one of the most delicious TAPA in town…

 

U.S. BEEF RIBCAP “TAPA & GARLIC OVERLOAD” , Php 295+.  Servings in Mr. Jones are HUGE!  Sharing is inevitable! :D Take my word on it : it’s one of the yummiest breakfast plate I had :D The beef tapa were sliced as thin as bacon strips, so flavorful that it can still stimulate your palate sans vinegar and achara(pickled papaya)!  But the achara and a little-sweet vinegar also add up to the experience!  That tapa and garlic overload rests on a bed of garlic rice… Ahhhhhh…  ang SARAP!  :D 

The eggs can be cooked the way-you-want. I asked the smiley waitress what’s best, and she recommended scrambled. Actually, I don’t mind whether it’s sunny-side-up or scrambled. But it seemed like the staff really knows their stuffs. :D

 

Surely, it deserves a second try on our future visits! It’s that good! :D

For our commercial model-to-be  cute kid, he enjoyed sipping heavenly milkshakes from a tall glass and a canister…

CHOCOLATE MILKSHAKE, PhP 175+ This tasted like blended chocolate ice cream and we liked it! Gabby loved it.  What we liked about it? They serve you even the extra-blended shake in a canister if the glass is already full.  It felt like you had 2 for the price of 1. :D 

Tina and our friend shared  a huge plate of….

MAC N CHEESE, PhP 350+. We noticed the use of 3 different pasta : rigatoni, penne and macaroni all fused into one dish; creamy and cheesy with bacon bits and mushroom.  It was OK but would not sky-rocket you to outer space. :( 

Just look at the evidence that Mr. Jones’ Tapa and Garlic overload is really a must-try :

Whether Gabby will soon nail a bit player part in a TVC or NOT, we’re considering going back to Mr. Jones whenever possible if only for that tapa and to try their other breakfast-all-day menu! :D

————–

:D  What are your favorite breakfast meals ?

08
Feb
10

CHOCOLATES ARE LOVE

Sometimes, things we do unplanned turns out to be a pleasant one. :D

Last Sunday morning, immediately after we heard mass, Gabby asked Tina and I if we can go straight to grocery.  Since it wasn’t scheduled, we asked him why.  He only wanted us to buy him a box of his favorite cereals.  How can you say NO to an innocent request ?  So we went to Landmark supermarket in TriNoma to buy his cereals and some supplies for our fridge.

As I was pushing our grocery cart, Tina spotted this…

Despite the fact that we still have our stocks of chocolates in our fridge that mostly came from our relatives abroad as their pasalubong last Yuletide season, Tina still thought I’ll like it; for I am a sucker for Dark Chocolates.  She kiddingly told me that it’s already her early Valentine’s Day gift for me. I took her statement in a jiffy and smiled my widest. :D  I also asked her to get one for herself; I know other than the love for chocolates, she also likes tin cans. Yes, she casually collects tin cans. In a heartbeat, she also got this from the grocery shelf…

Packaging was so nice! It’s a slide-on tin can with embossed illustration of what to expect inside…

Luscious chocolate pearls!  How can you go wrong with Hershey’s ?  For only around PhP 80 per pocket-sized tin can that has approximately 20 -30 choco-pearls, it’s definitely easy on the budget! :D

Heavenly sweet! :)

Oh, and we didn’t forget to buy Gabby his request. :D 

Do you like chocolates have sweet tooth too ?

What’s your latest grocery finds ?

05
Feb
10

DON’T YOU MISS BAGUIO?

I do. :)    I have been to the country’s summer capital several times since my growing up years and every Northern trip with family and friends has been always exciting.  

It’s February once more and it isn’t only the LOVE month that coincides with the Chinese New Year (Read : Binondo, here we come!) but Baguio City will be literally in full bloom again as it celebrates PANAGBENGA FESTIVAL, one of the most famous and visited fiesta in our country.  If Pasadena in the US has Tournament of Roses, Baguio has Panagbenga! :D  And this month, the festivities are scheduled on 27th, Saturday, for the Grand Street Parade and the following day 28th, Sunday for the Grand Float Parade making that weekend the most colorful, extra-special and memorable to all. 

If  time and chance will only allow us, we wouldn’t hesitate to go to the City of Pines again just to experience its below 20 degree-celcius-climate and to witness its flower festival. Nevertheless, we’re  lucky enough to enjoyed it 2 years ago with my entire family. :)  Have you experienced Panagbenga?

And there’s more of Baguio than Panagbenga!  What do I miss about Baguio ? Praying at the Lourdes Grotto after counting the steps up to the upper most area;  the zigzag mountainous roads on way to Philippine Military Academy;  exploring Crystal Cave; afternoon at the Wright Park and picture-taking at the gates of the Mansion;  attending mass at the Baguio Cathedral early in the morning and sipping free-flowing brewed coffee and eating a delicious hearty breakfast at Zola restaurant at the foot of the Cathedral, just along Session Road;  the restaurants along Session Road and more…

What else do I miss ?  A lot more things!  Breathtaking view of Mines View Park; the freshest veggies and strawberry-picking direct from its fields in La Trinindad, Benguet; Botanical Garden, spending an entire day at Camp John Hay;  going to the Chinese Temple-Bell Church, window-shopping at Ibay’s silver shop and a lazy stroll at Burnham Park.

We may not attend this year’s Panagbenga and still uncertain if we’ll have summer break in this beautiful place, but definitely, Baguio City will always be one of my family’s favorite local vacation spots. :D

What do you like most about Baguio ?

05
Feb
10

DISTURBING BEHAVIOR

If you’ve been to Boracay, or at least have read or viewed something about it, you may be familiar with this beautiful rock formation known as Willy’s Rock, the famous landmark at Boat Station One in the island paradise.  It’s entirely visible in the morning, and is always almost half-submerged during high tide in the afternoon.

We were fortunate to see it and experience the crystal-turquoise waters and pristine powdery white sand on the last week of October just last year.  

This morning, Tina and I were literally shocked; can’t help but uttered “OH MY GOD!”  when we learned from a news item reported on Umagang Kay Ganda, a local morning TV show, that the owner of the resort where Willy’s rock is located, removed and burned the image statue of the Blessed Virgin on top of the grotto because of the reason that he’s now a pastor of a certain religion thus his act, alarming the parish priest of the Island.

We honestly respect other religions and beliefs but my wife and I are disturbed why others can’t do so.

Just imagine if our 5-year-old son who was with us in Boracay last year knows about this, how do you think parents should explain that other people could do such thing to something that represents one’s faith?

03
Feb
10

DOCGELO’S EYES

Hello! I will appreciate if you can frequent (and leave comments too at :D ) my other site;

I call that humble photoblog 

:D  DOCGELO’S EYES

See you there, OK ? Thanks!

PS :  Kindly link DOCGELO’S EYES to your sites too. Salamat!

03
Feb
10

GOLDEN SPOON : ICE CREAM LOVERS’ YOGURT

:D WARNING : You may exhibit SIALORRHEA (excessive drooling) LOL.

I know we observed gluttony ate too much good food last Sunday. :D From Cerealicious that started our day, to Pepper Lunch steaks as our mid day meals and as if we have bottomless gastric pits, we had rooms for these heavenly yummies as our late afternoon desserts…

Admittedly, I’m no expert but I certainly know my palate.  Thankfully, my wife is also sure of her taste (that’s why she married me, :D *wink* and we’re blessed with a son who, at the young age of 5, have been dreaming of becoming a chef one day.  Needless to say, good food is one of those tangible things that binds our family together. :D

Last year, my family and I tasted several (but NOT ALL) yogurts, gelato and premium ice creams around the Metro.  And since I found luxury of time to upload them back, allow me to review them all to you… just be careful, you might drool on your keyboard, *grin*

(You may click each photo to salivate enlarge)

From the creamiest and velvety ice creams, to air-less flavorful gelato and yogurts, I officially state that we like them ALL. :D  As I have written here before, I can never imagine a world without them.

Since I’ve tried yogurts from grocery freezers, I’ve known them to have distinctly little sour and tangy taste whether with fruity flavors or just plain.  But last Sunday, my view on yogurts’ taste was totally changed as I, Tina and Gabby were treated to GOLDEN SPOON by our friend, LG and thus, we have finally sampled a creamy yogurt that tastes like heavenly ice cream!

At the counter, you can taste-test different flavors before ordering; we even saw 2 ladies in front of us on the queue who just tasted Golden Spoon’s flavors and left the counter without an order. For us, we’re definite of our choices.  We preferred 2 of the uncommon variants;  those that are uniquely Golden Spoon flavors – CAKE BATTER and BOYSENBERRY.   They’re both delicious sans toppings; and absolutely, a must-try! :D 

Golden Spoon has a wide variety of toppings including hot toppings that aren’t offered in other yogurt stores.  But IMO, since  it tastes like ice cream already, it’s better enjoyed as plain unless for kids who wanted to add some colors to their desserts.

It’s reasonably pricier too than other brands. Golden Spoon Yogurt without toppings costs PhP 88 for MINI and the cups we had were sized at SMALL, costs PhP 155. You can also avail of their large tubs, pints or in cones.

On top of  its ice-cream-like taste, the edge of Golden Spoon yogurt above other brands :

Sourced via Golden Spoon

My verdict : GOLDEN SPOON is just DIVINE! Not only because it’s delicious but it’s healthier than other sweet temptations.  

Although I and Tina still prefer a bit of sourness in yogurt, I wouldn’t mind paying Golden Spoon another visit to try other flavors!

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GOLDEN SPOON,  Upper Ground Level, Shangri La Plaza Mall, Mandaluyong City.

02
Feb
10

WE WON AS FINALIST AT HP @ PL!

I was literally surprised to receive a call from Ms. C last Saturday afternoon; it went something like …

Ms. CVS :  Hello, docgelo?

me :  Yes, who’s on the line?

Ms. CVS :  CHUVANESS.

me ( a bit sleepy) :  who?

Ms. CVS :  Cecile.  You won! Kaya lang finalist lang.  So when do you want to get your GCs from PL-Shang ?

me : Oh, Ms. Cecile! Wow (me -wide-mouthed-drop-jaw on the phone)!!! Thank you for the call. You made my afternoon, really!  We’ll claim it tomorrow–Sunday afternoon. 

Ms. CVS : OK, i’ll just leave it Mylene (the store manager). Thanks!

me :  Bye, thank you so much (wide smile up to my ears).

         Hey, Tina, nanalo daw, finalist yung picture nyo ni Gabby! Yehey! 

And so this picture of my wife, Tina and our 5-year-old son Gabby made it as one of the finalists at HP @ PL contest, conducted by Pepper Lunch, Shangri La and HP.  We didn’t win any of the 2 units of HP Premium Printer/Scanner/Copier but are still grateful of such blessings!

We won PhP 1,000 GC from Pepper Lunch and my family’s photo landed a space at Ms. C’s blog!  View here –CHUVANESS

After we heard mass at St. Francis of Assissi last Sunday; enjoyed spoonfuls of cereals at Cerealicious in Shangri La Plaza Mall, Tina, Gabby and I with our dear friend LG, headed to PEPPER LUNCH in the same mall to claim our Pepper Money. 

It was definitely another awesome PL experience!

What did we savor?

This was my hot grill plate – SHIMOFURI PEPPER STEAK, PhP 650.  Where else can you enjoy an affordable and tender-licious beef steak in a SIZZLE-IT-YOUR-WAY-style ?  Sarap! This is my next PL favorite to Double Beef Pepper Rice. :D

Flipping the beef strips onto the grill in a few seconds will give you this heaven-on-a-hot-plate! :D

While our friend LG enjoyed his order…

SALMON PEPPER RICE, PhP 275.

Tina had her favorite (and mine too!)…

BEEF PEPPER RICE, PhP 198.

I love PL’s KANI SALAD, PhP 99 while Gabby had his MOLTEN ALA MODE, PhP 140.

We LOVE PEPPER LUNCH MORE not just for their delicious PEPPER STEAKS AND HONEY BROWN SAUCE but for being so FAMILY-FRIENDLY.  All PL people from staff to the manager are always ready with warmest smiles and courtesy. One even provided Gabby with crayons and something to color which we really appreciate.  :D  Good job, PL!

Surely, after every meal at PL, everyone’s a winner!  :D

Thanks again, Ms. C., PL and HP! :D

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PEPPER LUNCH, LG Level Shangri La Plaza /aslo in Alabang Town Center, Greenbelt 5, Power Plant Mall.

01
Feb
10

CEREAL BLOCKBUSTERS : WE LIKE!

It is Tina more than I do, who loves cereals and can enjoy it any time of the day!  I remember when we first had our buffet-breakfast in a hotel a few years ago, she immediately went to the spread with different cereals!  I can’t blame her; everyone knows how good these breakfast-starters to our nutrition particularly to our digestion for most of them, if not all are fiber-rich! 

You can just imagine how my wife was overwhelmed to try CEREALICIOUS at Shangri La Plaza Mall last Sunday. 

The interiors is impressive, dainty and attractive, likewise the menu.

How do you like your cereals served ? As Cashewblanca or The Karate Kit ?  You may want to try My Best Friend’s Pudding or I-Rone Man perhaps?

You might be fascinated with Bidget Jones’ DiaReese and Pirates of the Cadbury-ean!  Or may prefer Harry Butter Finger of Azkaban and/or Nutting Hill. :D

Yes, the menu of Cerealicious is entirely named after famous blockbuster movies with a twist depending on the yummies on its cup or bowl. :D

So the difficulty lies on choosing what to enjoy! Look at how my family was so engaged at the fantastic menu…

 

Tina and Gabby were so delighted to sample these…

JUMANGO. Cornflakes, Mango, Honey Crumble for Tina.

Roll the dice and go on a journey with exciting mix of Cornflakes, mangoes, honey crumble  and strawberry syrup. Your palate will go wild with this all-time hit. So in this game, can you guess my name?  Jumango!  

THE GUMMI RETURNS. Honey Stars, Gummi Bears, Marshmallows for Gabby.

Nothing quite like gummies to bring you back to life. You get a chest load of Honey Stars, Gummi Bears, Marshmallows to cast a spell of happiness not even Imothep can break.

At Cerealicious, there are also milkshakes, crepes, pancakes, oatmeal bowls, ice cream splits, cereal toppings tried and tested to be certified hits! :D   And did I tell you already that their cereals are so easy on the pocket ? Trailer (small bowl) only costs PhP 60 and Blockbuster (big bowl) only costs PhP 110.

We heard mass that morning before grabbing a spoonfuls of cereals from Cerealicious.  Posts on our wonderful lunch and merienda to follow soon!  What a fine Sunday with family that was!

:) How was the start of your week ? 

:) Do you like cereals ?

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CEREALICIOUS 2nd Level Shangri La Plaza Mall, Mandaluyong City.

 

01
Feb
10

MY COUSIN’S WEDDING

A  Reading from the Book of Corinthians 13 : 1-7

If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and know all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.  And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind, and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

This was the passage I read at the church last Thursday, 28 January 2010 at my cousin’s wedding who renewed her vows to her good husband whom she married about 5 years ago in Atlantic City, New Jersey.  It made me a bit nostalgic because (if my memory serves me right) it was the same biblical verses she read on my wedding to Tina (who esle? LOL) 6 years ago. Incidentally, it was also the reading we heard at mass just last Sunday.

The wedding last week was appreciated by the family, relatives and friends who weren’t able to join them in their initial celebration of the sacrament of matrimony.

The solemn ceremonies at the Shrine-Parish of Our Lady of the Abandoned in Marikina City was followed by a fun wedding reception held at The Glass Garden in Santolan, Pasig City.

There were the usual essentials to a reception : a quartet and a soloist set the party in a casual mood yet lovely; flowers, food, wine, the venue and the attendance of their guests made everything extra special.

We went in full force! Well, not actually; 2 of my brothers were apparently no-show for some reasons but I came with Tina and Gabby, my youngest brother, JC who stood in our brother’s behalf as one of the secondary sponsors and our Dad was present too. He wouldn’t miss it for the world because it served as another reunion-party with our relatives from US; the first was held 4 days prior to this wedding when we all attended our Lola Tentay’s 90th birthday.

The chocolate-addicts and the kids-in-us were unleashed upon seeing these little something on our table…

Tina, Gabby and I smiled our widest when we saw these M&M chocolates -both plain and with nuts! :D I personally thought it was already their favors until we received a laced box with can opener. It has a white calla lilly design which was the predominant flower from church to our tables.

The spread was provided by Josiah’s Catering.  Guess what most everyone enjoyed that evening…

Forgive me, for having lechon twice in a week! Oink, oink! LOL :D 

There were so many entrees and desserts to choose from the buffet spread but my votes went to these toothsome chocolate cupcakes and panna cotta trio – in mango, strawberry and chocolate which to our delight were served chilled.   

The night was filled with love, joy and fun moments shared to their guests.  And everyone who attended will agree that one of the highlights of that evening was my cousin’s dance with my uncle…

To Melai & Matt, Best wishes & Congratulations!

May God bless you more as you enjoy your life together, forever and ever, Amen! :D

Cheers! :D

———————————————————-

:D What do you like most about weddings ?




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