Starbucks Signature Pairings!

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Starting today, welcome your morning and your day with these signature Starbucks Pairings!!













Lovely, just lovely - right??

Count your blessings

Monday, July 25, 2016


Challenges in life is a norm.  Let's all admit it, we most of the time dwell on the bad instead of the good.  It's hard to focus on the good when something bad comes along.  But life is not all bad, right?  There must be something good too, I mean come on - if it's all bad, then why are we still here?

Warning - EMO post ahead!!

I used to be envious of other people's lives.  I used to say that this friend is lucky because she's can afford certain things or that friend has a wonderful perfect husband who adores her and many more.  But what we see is only what we want to see.  For sure everyone is envious of each other's lives - we're only human, no one's life is perfect.  And we usually yearn for something that we don't have.

Recently, I've learned to STOP say *Ang swerte ni ganito and ganyan* because I felt that it made me more sad about my life and something that I didn't have but want.  It's quite hard to be honest, because in truth, when we see the good in others' lives - we secretly want that same good in ours.  What I do now is that I've learned to see the good in the bad, which was very hard at first.  I've learned to change my perspective and appreciate what I have.  Focus on the positive and not on the negative.  Appreciate the small things in life.  I am breathing, I'm alive, I'm healthy, my kids are healthy, my kids are happy - those are the things that matter to me now.

Learning to see the good in the bad is not easy.  It takes determination and an entire shift in outlook.  Just recently, a friend's son was diagnosed with general epilepsy, I was asking her if it was severe or not.  She said that the doctor told her that this was treatable, but they had to take medications for 2 years.  We were then thinking, kawawa naman her son.  And then I remembered a sister of a friend who has severe epilepsy that while she was pregnant, she would randomly have an epileptic attack!  I was telling her, she's lucky because at least, with her son - it can be treated, imagine if it was a different kind or a more severe kind of epilepsy - COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS.

Life is filled with challenges and problems.  Most people ask why *it* doesn't stop *wala na ba itong katapusan?*, honestly speaking?  That's life.  It's filled with so many many many challenges.

Counting my blessings mean that I see the good in the bad.  My bank account may be below the minimum daily deposit but I have wonderful kids that welcome and run to me when I go home and pick them up from school.  They hug me and think the world of me.  One smile from them and my heart melts completely.  And I think that's good enough.  It may not be monetary rewarding, but it's rewarding in so many different aspects.  Do you agree?

So, I say - COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS.  Be grateful.  Be thankful for what you have.  It may be the tiniest detail in your life, but still be thankful.  You may have very little in the bank, but you have family and friends who love and support you, then that's enough.  I know what I'll say next may be up for a debate - but if you have a philandering husband, (I'm sure the argument will be how can you see the good in that?!) but provides your needs as well as the children's + you have kids that love and adore you - that's good enough.  I know it'll be tough - I mean, it's the betrayal of trust that's happened - but what are you to do?  Instead of asking yourself - why it happened, why not just focus on the good?  Life goes on.

It's tough, really tough - but that's life.

We need to roll with the punches.

COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS.

I remember watching an episode of OPRAH - she was saying to do an exercise everyday.  And that is to name at least 5 things you are grateful for that day.  You can start with one and build your way up to 5.  This exercise will help kickstart at more positive outlook in life.  Try it!

New Starbucks Frappuccino flavors: Mango Fruit Jelly Yogurt & Strawberry Fruit Jelly Yogurt!!

Thursday, July 21, 2016



Recreate your fun-filled adventures with new Starbucks Frappuccino® flavors – Mango Fruit Jelly Yogurt and Strawberry Fruit Jelly Yogurt. Starting July 26, get that much needed zesty boost with these new beverages boasting a delicious combination of chilled yogurt and fruity swirl blended with ice.
“The all new Mango Fruit Jelly Yogurt and Strawberry Fruit Jelly Yogurt Frappuccino® Blended Beverages are a delightful combination of fruity taste in a sweet jelly, layered with the smooth texture of yogurt. Reminiscent of a creamy parfait, these Frappuccino® Blended Beverages are inspired by our customers’ love of sweet fruit, making them the ideal beverage to lighten up one’s day,” said Keith Cole, head for marketing at Starbucks Philippines.
Delight in the sweetness of fresh mango or strawberry perfectly balanced by a hint of tartness from the yogurt for a mouth-watering beverage. To energize your day, the Mango Fruit Jelly Yogurt Frappuccino® perfectly blends honey-citrus sweet mango sauce with yogurt, topped with a layer of mango fruit jelly with real mango bits. Meanwhile, the equally refreshing and irresistible Strawberry Fruit Jelly Yogurt Frappuccino® features a visual treat with the yogurt blended with strawberry sauce puree topped with strawberry jelly with strawberry bits.

“Starbucks continues to innovate with new flavor and texture combinations to meet our customers’ expectations for the Frappuccino® Blended Beverages,” said Cole.

PRESS RELEASE

Trying to get the groove back..

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

I'm still adjusting - to being a mom of a big schooler.  Waking up at 5:15 in the morning to get ready and wake Kailee and get her ready.  I've been brining her to school every morning and picking up Connor after school.  My day now is totally different - schedules, moods, responsibilities - well my life has experiences a sort of shake up and down.

My day used to be waking up at 7:30am waiting for the kids to get ready so I can bring them to the office.  There were days that I wake up at 8:00am.  But now, I wake up at 5:15am so I can wake Kailee up at 5:30am to get ready.  We leave the house by 6:00am the latest to pick up my niece and nephew (they carpool with us).  Bring my nephew to Xavier and then bring the girls to ICA.  During my time, parents would just drop off their kids at the gate.  The kids would go up by themselves and find their classrooms on their own.  Now - parents, yayas and grandparents would need to bring the girls through the gate, up the stairs and bring them inside the *gated* area.  So as to make sure that the girls are inside ICA's kinder department.

I would be home by 7am to 7:30am and I'll still be sleepy.  During the first week, I waited for Kailee but the following week - well, I had my cousin in law Shirley pick up Kailee because I still needed to pick Connor up from EduPlay.  For the second week, I was still energetic feeling a different high.  I felt that I had much more time to do things.  In the office, I felt more productive.  By the time I left to pick up Connor, I was done with most of my tasks in the morning.  It was a different high for the first two weeks until a few days before we left for Hong Kong.

Since we came back from our HK trip (read all about the cancelled flights and delays we experienced) my body clock and schedule has been wonky.  I am extra sleepy.  But now, after a week - I feel that I'm slowly starting to get my groove back.  There is a settling feeling that things are starting to come around again.  Getting used to a new schedule is not as easy as I thought.  Hahaha!  Maybe because of age too?  I don't know, but I guess adjusting needs a bit more time - I need to give myself time to adjust.  My Panget kidded and told me *This is what happens in the next 13 years of your life*, then he starts laughing.  Bwahahahahaha.....

With the recent adjustment, I know that I have somehow neglected this blog.  I swear to you, I have so many thoughts I want to share, so many things I want to write about.  It's just - I can't find the time to do it.  Before, I would still have energy to write after dinner.  Nowadays, I would just like to lay in bed and rest.  I used to write when the house is asleep, but now - I join the house sleeping early!  My day has become longer, my work life has become more productive but my blogging - well, it has taken a back seat.

There are a number of events that I have turned down because of schedule conflict.  There are events that so I wanted to go to but suddenly can't because I need to be up and about early the next day or the event is right on the same time as I need to pick up Connor from school.  Life is different now, and I must say - I salute all those mom bloggers who still manage to attend events, look beautifully fresh and still be able to manage their home life.  I need pointers.  PLEASE!!

I don't even get to watch my favorite TV shows na!  I used to sleep at 12MN or 1am since I don't bring any kid to school.  But now that I do - I am tucked in bed by 9pm and I make sure to sleep by 10 or 11 the latest!  Life is soooo different now.  So different.

Well, I'm starting to get my groove back.  I ask for prayers that I may be able to maintain this *groove*.  I miss writing.  I miss the feeling of the keyboard on my finger tips.  I miss the sound of the keyboard as I type in the words I have in my head.  Pray that I get to have more energy to do more things.

I suddenly realized something.  Would anyoen remember the Clusivol commercial with the line graph extending?  I think I need my graph to be like that.  Hahaha!  It just dawned on me, that I am now their target market.  Hahaha!! :)

Parenting Advice from Becoming Sherilyn: 3 Things I learned parenting my 5-year old

Monday, July 18, 2016

I'm sure all of us had had those moments that we lose the tiny string of patience left in our sanity with our kids.  I am guilty of shouting at them when I get frustrated.  I start out with using a loving soft voice, but when I need to repeat what I said more than three times with them just ignoring me, I suddenly feel that I need to jolt them up using a louder angry.  It works, but I'm sure they're all very *jolted*.

How I wish there was a manual that we all can follow on parenting.

I'm sharing with you guys an article written by my HS batch mate, Sherilyn.  Please click the link to read the full piece.


Repairing an interaction is one of the most valuable gifts we can give our kids — they learn that it is okay to make mistakes and that it doesn’t take away from a person to apologize. Kids benefit more from a parent who humbles and repairs than from a perfect parent. Another wonderful thing I’ve learned firsthand is that kids are so forgiving and they can sense a parent’s commitment to them. When we got home, my daughter made me this drawing to repair her interaction with me.



I hope you find it helpful.  

Thanks She!!

Bag Tags by Buckingham Embroidery

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Every time we travel, I make sure to place a ribbon or some sort of marker on our bags to differentiate it from other bags.  As we all know, luggages seem to all look like the one you have!  So to make things easier - and to not make the mistake of getting a bag that is not ours - there's a ribbon and a bag tag.

Last year, since we travelled quite a number of time, I went to the mall and had bag tags made.  All I could find was the the card type bag tag.  To be honest, it was quite pricey - I remember paying Php150.00 for each bag tag.

But after just one use, one of the tags cracked and was bent.  I assumed as much because the card type is quite delicate and brittle.  We had to *remedy* the bag tags, put tape on it even if it looks silly.  I mean I wanted my Php150.00 to last me a while, diba?

After 5 trips, the bag tags looked so kawawa.  I honestly didn't want to use them anymore but what was I do to.  I didn't want to have new ones made because I knew they're get broken again.  But during this recent trip to Hong Kong, we - I decided, to heck with it.  I need to have one made.

It was a wonderful thing that a post popped up in my Facebook feed.  It was a business post of a bag tag!  It was a different kind of bag tag - as the name would be embroidered on it.  There were so many choices in *lace* color and color of thread to be used to embroider the name.

To be honest, the transaction went very fast.  I sent a private message over to them with the color of the lace and the embroider.  I explained that I only wanted our surnames to be embroidered, but they need to be spaced well since it's just four (4) characters long.  There was a discount given, I placed an order of 6 pieces (I honestly wanted more but I wanted to try it out first).  I made a promise to deposit the payment and have it picked up.

And then I forgot about it.  Hahaha!!  I seriously forgot that I needed to deposit the payment.  It was only after a few days, that Lilia (the owner) posted the finished product that it dawned on me that I needed to deposit the payment!  I apologized and thanked her so many times for making it even if she hasn't received the payment yet!  Since I haven't paid, I asked how much it was to be shipped and I just added that amount to the total.  I made sure to deposit it right before picking Connor up from school.

So, these tags arrived yesterday:



They're just perfect.  The won't bend or break, well unless forcibly cut.  They won't crack not peel off!  They will just get dirtied, but you can wash them, diba??

The size is perfect too.  It's seven (7) inches length, material is sturdy, best of all it's super visible to the eye!  I was very happy with the turnout of this online buy.  I plan to buy more!  Well, it gave me an idea to make these tags for my kids!

I got these from Lilia, she owns Buckingham Embroidery.  Please do check out their Facebook Page - Buckingham Embroidery.  They also have an Instagram account, but they don't post often.  Lilia answers queries fast.  They do all sorts of embroideries on anything.  Check their page out!

I bought these tags for P90.00 each.  Not bad right?  Shipping was an additional P60.00

I really really really love them!! :)

Thanks Lilia for posting online.  Glad I saw your post!  Hihi.. :)

Lilia Cua/Buckingham Embroidery
Facebook Page - https://www.facebook.com/buckingham.embro/
Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/buckingham.embro/
Contact Numbers: (02) 736-5240, 733-9108, 735-4227, +639178107045

Pet Express: Dog & Cat Expo 2016!!

Thursday, July 14, 2016


Furry Facts, Finds & Fun at the Pet Express Dog & Cat EXPO 2016

Did you know that the Dachshund was originally bred as a working dog in Germany? Were you aware that the Shih Tzu was bred as lap dogs in Tibet and China to serve as a royal companion to the emperor? Find out other interesting tidbits on different dogs & cats breeds and brands from various countries around the world at the Pet Express Dog & Cat EXPO 2016!
Now on its fifth year, the event is happening on July 16 and 17 and will once again be held at the SMX Convention Center in SM Mall of Asia.
Meet different animal breeds as dog and cat groups show you what being a pet parent is about. Take your pick from pet-related talks on health and nutrition, pet-friendly spaces, animal welfare, agility demos, and pet fashion shows. Be one of the first to learn new pet products to be unveiled exclusively at the EXPO and enjoy pawsome deals and limited offers in store for your shopping pleasure.
The event will also serve as the launch pad for the “Care Paw-kage for CARA” campaign, a donation drive for the animal welfare group, CARA (Compassion and Responsibility for Animals). This is in partnership with Metromart.com, an on-demand delivery service that brings your favorite pet products straight to your doorstep.
BDO cardholders get a special treat for every P2000 single-receipt purchase. Qualified customers get to bring home a limited edition drawstring bag from the EXPO.
Event will run from 10am to 10pm. This is an event you wouldn’t want to miss! See you at the Pet Express Dog & Cat EXPO 2016!

Media Partners: The Philippine Star, Manila Bulletin, Animal Scene, and Metro-pets.com.
For more details, follow Pet Express online and check out #DogandCatEXPO2016 on social media. 
www.facebook.com/PetExpressPH
www.instagram.com/PetExpressPH
www.twitter.com/PetExpressPH

Snapchat: PetExpressPH

Here's what's in store for the two day expo:



Of cancelled flights, delays + someone's birthday!!

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

For the first time in my ENTIRE life.  I experienced not one but TWO (2) cancelled flights.  Add to the fact that I was with Kailee and Connor.  Thank goodness we were stranded at the Hong Kong International Airport!  Had we been stuck in NAIA - all hell would break lose!!  PLUS someone special was celebrating their birthday..

Last week on the day of the holiday we flew to HK for our annual trip.  What welcomed us was a rainy Hong Kong, but it was just on the day we arrived.  The next days were gloomy and sunny.  Something not new to us since we're used to the HK wet and hot summer.  The trip was kind of relaxed.  For the first time, I didn't make an IT nor a list of places to go and eat.  I was serious with the *Bahala Na* plan.  Hihi..  We got to try new restaurants deviated from our comfort choices and survived!  Hahaha... :)

Last Saturday was our last day in HK.  We're usually in a rush, but that particular day - we were very relaxed.  We were able to manage our time properly.  I am one who doesn't like to rush things.  I'd like to have some room (of time) to adjust, you know just in case something happens.  I have this day that I call airport days - these days I don't make plans because I want to be able to properly plan my time just in case something happens.  That's just me.  So, we had an early lunch - then after decided to head to the airport.  I didn't want to get caught in the immigration lines (since it's summer vacation for most of the world)  So, when we reached the airport - we immediately looked for the gate of our flight.  It was oddly strange that there was no gate indicated in the monitor, but we just dismissed this.   Went through immigration and by the time we finished, there was still no gate on the monitor!  I was getting worried though, that it would be a super duper far gate - but I remained calm.  A hour before the departure time - well, there was still no gate.  I was already getting impatient.  We then decided to just sit in a gate near a play area for the kids.  That was gate 23.  About 30 minutes before the departure time, there was still no gate.  I went to the Airline Services Desk and asked a staff who was dressed in a Cathay Pacific FA attire.  I then asked if our flight was going to be delayed.  She answered me with a *MAYBE it will be delayed*  I had to retort back *Are you kidding me?  MAYBE?  It's 30 minutes before departure time and your answer is MAYBE?* the male staff beside her seemed to understand what I was getting at and he blurted out *Yes, the flight is delayed*  I then thanked him and said that his was the better answer, because it was more truthful!  So on my back to the play area to report to my Panget what I learned, I saw on the monitor that there was finally a gate assigned - it was Gate 70.  But wait - I saw some chinese characters in RED that was flashing.  I had to wait a moment for it to turn into english, and it read ... CANCELLED.

Oh my freaking GOSH.

I ran towards my Panget to tell him that the flight was cancelled and that we needed to head to Gate 70 to know what will happen next.  Imagine my shock to discover that Gate 70 was all the way to the end of the airport.  I immediately called the kids and motioned them to sit on their strollers.  Yaya Belen and I were brisk walking like crazy.  We had a good 15 minutes of fast walk before we reached Gate 70.  I was honestly out of breath when we got there.  And it was mayhem.  I told my Panget to settle the kids somewhere and come look for me near the counter.  I managed to squeeze my way in the front just in time to hear a CX staff say that the flight was indeed CANCELLED.  They were motioning for us to move back because they were setting up the airport stanchions.  Most of the travelers there were getting impatient mainly because of the lack of information given us.  I must admit, it was confusing because they only said *THE FLIGHT HAS BEEN CANCELLED*.  I'm sure what was on everyone's head was *WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?*

One thing I knew was to REMAIN CALM.  I'm sure everyone's upset, but being angry and shouting will get no one anywhere.  There was one female passenger who wanted an answer but no one could give her a direct answer, I understood why she was angry but you also have to understand that the people assisting us were also given that same information just minutes before.  The female passenger had a point - the airline knew beforehand that there was going to a cancellation - it would have been better had they prepared a solution right away instead of gathering everyone in and assisting them one by one.  She had a point BUT then again - maybe the airline was understaffed?  Who knows!  Anyway, the reason that they gave us for the cancellation was a TECHNICAL ISSUE.  I honestly didn't want to know any more specifics of the technical issue because it was irrelevant.  Some passengers wanted to know more details - but for me, it's useless.  What I needed what a solution.  So, one by one - we were assisted.  We were told that we'd be transferred to the 10pm flight that same day (it was the LAST FLIGHT out of Hong Kong going to Manila) - we were given our boarding passes and the time of boarding was printed at 9:25PM.  I asked them if the flight was confirmed to take off or not - and it was (according to them).  We were also give HKD150.00 meal vouchers per person, so we had a total of HKD750.00 to spend at ANY restaurant.



When I got back to the kids, I had a moment to settle down and let everything sink in.  Our flight was cancelled and we needed to wait a long while before we could fly back home.  I started sending messaged to our families to report what happened.  I called the driver not to pick us up at the time we agreed on and instead gave him a new time to be at the airport (which was at 1230am).  We then had a LOT of time on our hands.  We thought, what was there to do?  I honestly didn't want to walk very far to go back to the restaurants located after immigration.  We then played it safe - looked at the next flights going to Manila checked out the gate numbers and assumed that more or less, these were the gates we would be assigned to.  So we stayed within the area of Gate 60-70.  Connor and Kailee were entertained by the iPad, while I was walking around trying not to get bored.  My Panget was playing with his iPad and Yaya Belen took a snooze.  We all had one issue - we were all thirsty.  All our bottled waters were thrown out including water for the kids.  The female security personnel told us *No water, any amount of water allowed for kids ages 3 and up.  Only below 3 years old*  So to the trash bags our bottled and waters went.  I had to walk to a restaurant to buy water using our meal vouchers.  WE didn't want to spend money anymore and since there was a meal voucher - why not make the most out of it!

All restaurants sold EVIAN water.  It costs an arm and a leg.  So with my HKD75.00 I was only able to buy three (3) yes, three freaking bottles of 300ml Evian water.  When I came back, my Panget even questioned me why it was only three bottles!  I told him that these three bottles cost HKD24.00 each and since I only had HKD75.00 this was all I could buy.  He then told me to buy in Mannings.  I had to remind him that he didn't want to shell out for water, thus - these three (3) freakingly expensive bottles of Evian should do!  We even had to strategize.  Yaya Belen and I would share 1 bottle, the kids 1 bottle and my Panget 1 bottle.

We were lucky that we got stranded in HKIA.  Had it been in NAIA - my gosh, we would have been bored to death.  At the very least, HKIA was spacious, the AC was cold and there were play areas for the kids.  After a few hours of entertaining ourselves, we decided to eat.  I mean, we had to eat since our flight was at 10pm that night.  We were looking for a restaurant to eat.  I always assumed that there was a Maxim's restaurant inside the airport, apparently - there was one.  It was just unfortunate that the location was right before the immigration section.  So in short, we were stuck with the *Canteen Style* restaurants on Level 7 right after immigration.  My Panget didn't want to walk that far plus we surmised it would be impossible to find a table.  We settled for a restaurant near Gate 60.  There was a Tai Hing that served rice topping meals - and as you would have guessed - we settled for that.  We ate and enjoyed the peace and quiet for a while.  Thank goodness for the brains behind the FREE CHARGING stations, we were able to charge most of our gadgets in preparation for the countdown to our flight.

Once we finished and freshened up, we decided to walk to an information counter to ask if there was already an assigned gate for our 10PM flight.  There was a gate assigned and it was Gate 4.  My golly gosh we were nearby Gate 60 so that meant a long, really long walk.  So we started our walk.  This time, we were not rushing since we had a LOT of time - we just walked and walked and walked.  It was at the opposite end of where we were.  Yaya Belen was saying that HKIA was ginormous that it was massive.  I told her that they created it this big to accommodate people comfortably, I even told her there was another wing - half this size on the other end.  She then compared our NAIA to this and she said ours was nothing compared to this - I then told her, that is was foresight does, preparation for what is to come.

By 8PM, we were already very tired.  We started walking nearer to our gate and it dawned on us that we still have unused meal vouched amounting to HKD375.00!  I told my Panget to check first before we go any nearer to the gate because I didn't want to walk back to a restaurant just to redeem.  Luckily, my Panget said there was a Deli France.  When we got there, we gave the vouchers to the person behind the counter and started to point to whatever pastry we could see on display.  I think we got about a dozen or so.  Yaya Belen kidded with my Panget that he had more than a week's worth of breakfast fare.  Hihi..  And so we waited again, eagerly anticipating the boarding time.

At 9PM, I went to the counter to ask if the flight was really leaving because I didn't want to go through what we went through.  The staff was confident that the flight would take off, she mentioned that there might just be a delay since the plane hasn't arrived yet.  I felt a bit settled, I mean if it's a plane problem - Cathay Pacific had a lot, HKIA is their hub + the plane was near HK already.

Lo and behold at 9:30PM there was no plane in sight.  People were starting to stand to line up even if there was no plane in sight.  by 9:45PM there was an announcement that departure time was moved to 10:30PM.  Thirty minutes was short compared to the hours we waited.  So we kept our cool and just waited.  We started boarding by 10PM.  We were able to go ahead of the line because we had strollers and kids in tow.  As we were cutting in the line to move to another line (Business Class) I was surprised to see a familiar face, Grace!  Grace and I met through a common friend and as it turns out, she belonged to the same batch as my Panget in their HS.  We exchanged pleasantries and small talk, we told them that our flight was cancelled and we were moved to this time - they Grace and her friend Jen were really booked at this flight.  My Panget and I were so relieved and excited to be boarding as we were already very tired and really wanted to go home (uwing uwi na talaga kami).  As we were boarding, we heard thunder and saw lightning - it began to rain hard.  While in line to get in, I saw another friend - she said that her flight was cancelled twice!  Apparently we were on the same flight (that was cancelled) going to Manila.  We were happily boarding the plane already.

When we settled ourselves on the plane, I was happy that there were individual TVs on each seat.  This meant that the kids would be entertained.  I was betting that Kailee would be asleep already as Connor was able to sleep on his stroller for a good hour.  Since we were the first ones to board, we just watched TV while waiting for the others to board.  I was happily watching Sex and the City Season 3.  I forgot how entertaining the show was and was so engrossed in watching.  One episode let to another episode then another episode.  It was raining so hard.  An announcement was made that they will wait for the weather to settle a bit before taking off.  I was so engrossed with watching Carrie that I totally forgot the time.  I didn't even notice anything was amiss during the wait.  It was only when Kailee was clapping her hands after the Barbie movie she was watching ended that I realized that we were still in HK!  She looked out the window and asked *Are we in the Philippines?*  I looked at the window and we were still in Hong Kong!  I looked at the time and it was a little passed 12midnight.  I turned to my Panget and said *Happy Birthday!*  Kailee and Connor followed suit.  Yes, it was Panget's birthday and what a way so spend it right?  I asked the FA what was happening.  Within minutes there was an announcement from the pilot.  Apparently, our Manila airport has a no fly zone from 2am to 4am.  So if we fly out and reach Manila by 2am - we won't be allowed to land!  Then we were all told that we needed to be off loaded!



To tell you the truth, I was comfortable waiting inside the plane.  The AC was cold, there were snacks, there are individual TV for everyone's entertainment.  I was honestly thinking, not bad I mean since I would be able to watch more Sex and the City episodes.  But nope, we needed to get off the plane.  While everyone was waking up and groaning, I told my Panget that we should be the last ones out.  I mean I expected another mayhem outside.  True enough, when we got off the plane and reached the counter - so many people were lining up, it was noisy - there was chaos.  I then went to my friend Grace and (new friend) Jen who were seated comfortably and I began to tell my story of how our flight was cancelled and now this flight was cancelled.  I believe that it was by pure luck too that I bumped into Grace before boarding, because if not for seeing Grace, I wouldn't have met her friend Candice, who was speaking to a CX staff and was able to convince that staff to bring them to the lounge to *rest*, when I heard it I asked if we could also go since we were at the airport after lunch!  The Cathay Pacific staff looked apologetic and motioned for us to follow her.  Pure luck, right?

And so we waited and chatted and laughed and shared stories, while Kailee slept in the chair and Connor ran around the lounge.  It was a nice way to get delayed, we were very very lucky.  Thank you Grace, Jen and Candice!  Our flight left a little after 4am, and we got to Manila by 6:30am.  We had to wait for our bags and it took a while.  We reached home at 7:30am.  We all showered and then dozed off.



I honestly can't believe how we managed to survived more than 14 hours being in the airport.  It was a craaaazy long day, crazy long day.  I must say, we were very lucky - very very lucky.

It baffled me though, that this happened on a Cathay Pacific flight.  I mean of all the airlines, CX is the one that I least expected to have cancelled flight and delays.  If it was PAL or Cebu Pacific, it would have been *expected* but with Cathay Pacific?  It was a loooong long shot.  But I guess, shit happens.

It was sucha long loooong day.  I felt as if I lost a whole day because of the cancelled flight and delays.  We didn't get to celebrate Panget's birthday properly as we were all sleepy and tired when we got home.

I do hope that Cathay Pacific makes it up to us somehow.  What would you do if this happened to you?  Let me know!

UPDATE:  08/24/2015
After more than 10 email exchanges with Cathay Pacific, they've finally sent us Service Vouchers to compensate for what happened.  Initially they gave us USD100.00, but I complained telling them that I didn't think it was enough.  I had to argue that it wasn't just one (1) flight that was cancelled but two (2)!  I wasn't asking much, I simply said maybe USD200.00 would be better, but my suggestion was dismissed.  We replied back and forth - and in the end, out of frustration - I wrote to the former country manager of CX and after just one reply - it was decided that they give us additional compensation of USD400.00!  All I can say is, it pays to complain - but only if and ONLY IF you make your argument very reasonable.  Thank you Cathay Pacific!!


Loving Basulir Tea

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

I must confess, I am not a coffee person.  But I do enjoy an occasional cup or two at times.  I'm more of a tea person.  Thus, my favorite drink are the tea lattes in the more popular coffee joints in the country.

On Mother's Day this year, I received a very special gift from Basilur Tea.  



Isn't it pretty?  

I opened it up and was surprised to see that they're real DRIED LOOSE TEA LEAVES!  I was so used to seeing dried teas in tea bags.  It was a pleasant surprise to see the real loose tea leaves.  AND the smell - it was so fragrant and sweet!  Something very feminine and sweet!


During the hot summer months, I enjoyed sipping my Paris Basilur Tea with ice.  Yes, it was a REAL iced tea!  Hahaha.. I found it really refreshing because of the mini fruits that were infused with the tea.  The flavor was just right, it wasn't overpowering strong nor was it weak.  It was just right, add to that the sweet aroma of the tea.  It takes you into a different place.

Last week we went to HK and the very hot and wet weather got to us, especially to me.  So when I got home, I was already sick.  I was looking for something to soothe my *feeling sick and under the weather self* and I remembered - Basilur Tea!



Been drinking this tea for two (2) whole days already and I feel so much better. 

Thank you James and Ann Sy for bringing this product in!!  

Visit Basilur Tea's FB page - Basilur Tea Philippines

You can find Basilur Tea in the following stores:




Connor & EduPlay School Manila

Monday, July 04, 2016

I must confess that with Connor.  I was not as *tutok* when it came to his learnings.  I let him enjoy play and even if he didn't sight read his letter and numbers - I was just so relaxed.  Hahaha!  It was only last year that I felt that he was a bit behind because his peers (kids of my friends) were already in pre-school.  I honestly felt a bit pressured but I trusted my decision to let him enter school only this year.

I've heard and seen a lot of kids crying when they entered school.  I didn't want Connor to experience that I didn't want to go through the stress of having to force them and the emotional upheaval I will be feeling with his refusal (if ever) to go to school.

Last year, I decided to put Kailee in EduPlay and it has to be the BEST decision in my daughter's educational path.  I am very happy with the outcome and I am proud of what Kailee has become with the molding and guiding of her teachers in EduPlay.  Read about why I chose EduPlay School HERE and HERE.  So when it was time to decide where Connor will go - well, it was a no-brainer already - EduPlay for sure.  And since Connor was already familiar with the school (I bring him at time when I picked up Kailee from school last school year) it wasn't much of a change.  He saw familiar grounds, he's very attracted to the play ground and play areas - plus the teachers look familiar to him.

I confess again that I wasn't able to bring him to school on his first day.  It was my Panget who brought him to school.  The kwento of Teacher Zenia was that Connor was still holding Dada's hand and was reluctant to let go.  But after a bit of warming up, Connor went with Teacher Zenia inside the classroom.  Since I wasn't able to bring him to school - I made sure to visit him when Kailee and I were on the way home.  Connor looked like a big boy already and he was participating in class.  The first thing he told me when he saw me was *Me Brave!  Me No Cry!* and my heart was filled with pride.  I had to leave him because his classes wouldn't end until 11:30am.

When I picked him up his face glowed with happiness!  He was so happy to see me.  And I was so happy to see him too!  My heart was breaking - I realized that I didn't have a baby anymore.  Connor is growing up - and it'a bittersweet reality for me.  I know he won't be my baby forever - but as a mom, they'll always be our babies, diba?

The next days - were mostly the same.  When I came to pick him up, he'd greet me with a very loud *Hi Mommy!* with a huge grin on his face.  I love seeing Connor happy - and he's very happy when he sees me pick him up.  One time he told me *Five Minutes* because he still wanted to play in the water table.  So I let him play.  Teacher Zenia said that Connor likes to play with water, I agreed - he loooves the water!  He would take long baths and whenever in the pool - even if he doesn't know how to swim, he would just stay nearby and play.

Two Fridays ago marked his first week of school.  To be honest, whenever I asked him that he did in school he'd just smile at me and say nothing.  I assumed that in his own time, he'd tell me.  My mom gifted Kailee and Connor a study table (last Christmas) but it was knocked down and I had to build it.  I finally found time last Friday night to do it.  I was only planning to build Kailee's because she needed it already, but then when I finished - Connor wanted to have his built, so I did.  I was so surprised with Connor because after building his table and chair - he immediately got books and started to browse.  He was saying out loud the animals he saw on the book.  He was sitting down, the book on the table and was browsing.  I was surprised when I saw this!  He was so behaved!  I was so used to seeing him running around the house, jumping from chairs and beds - it was so surprising to see him sit on the chair of his study table and just read!

Two Saturdays ago while at National Bookstore, I saw some writing books.  I bought a couple for Kailee and Connor to use to practice.  And since Kailee already knew the drill - she did it on her own already.  As with Connor, I was surprised that he wanted to try tracing.  And he did!  But he needed help with his pen grip, but the determination was there and I was rejoicing deep inside seeing him willingly do it on his own.

Last week, when I picked up Connor - Teacher Zenia said they started doing tracing and she said Connor liked tracing!  What a coincidence!  I told Teacher Zenia that Connor started tracing last Saturday and I was so impressed!  Hahaha..

Last Friday, the teachers prepared an envelope with materials that Connor used - shapes, writing and tracing activities.  I inspected each and every page and I was over the moon with happiness.  My heart was bursting and I felt so proud!  This was entirely new to me - Connor doing actual and real school stuff!

Connor had homework and I was honestly thinking, how can he draw?!  I honestly expected just lines and waves.  He usually does that.

But lo and behold - look at his creation:



I was so shocked to see heads, bodies, arms and legs!

I felt so proud!  I felt like I won a contest!  Hahaha..  The feeling was indescribable when he showed me his drawing.  Kulang nalang maluha ako.  But there was so much pride in my heart that my Connor was able to make this!

In all honesty - I attribute all of his improvements and achievements to Teachers Zenia and Jackie of EduPlay School Manila.  They have guided Connor so well - and imagine, in a span of just 2 weeks?  That's a helluva improvement, diba?

Connor loves us reading books to him now.  He's more talkative and descriptive of things now.  Before he used to just utter single words - now he talks in sentences and tells us stories.  We are all impressed with how Connor is becoming to be.  He's finally getting out of his shell and I must say - thank you to Teacher Zenia & Jackie, to all of Connor's classmates and everyone in Eduplay.

I made the RIGHT decision.

Oh, and by the way - at home Connor usually is being fed by Yaya Belen.  He never wants to feed himself.  But lookie here:



He fed himself during his classmate Cody's birthday celebration.

Achievement - UNLOCKED!!

Here is the Facebook Page of EduPlay School Manila.  This is their 4th yea

Starbucks Limited: Mocha Ribbon Chip Frapp!

Saturday, July 02, 2016

Yes, you read that right - a LIMITED edition drink!

The Mocha Ribbon Chip Frappucino Blended Beverage WITH Cookie Straw!



Our signature Coffee Frappuccino® is made more exciting with java chips for a chocolatey crunch. We then line the cup with Mocha sauce before pouring the Coffee Frappuccino® for a sweet balancing flavor. The beverage is then finished with Chocolate whipped cream, aromatic Turkish coffee grind and a cookie straw.

Available starting Monday - July 4 till July 10!

Hurry and try this exciting limited edition drink!

By the way - the cookie straw will be available (to be sold separately with any of your drinks) starting July 11, 2016!!


Instead of sipping your Frappuccino with a green straw, why not use a rolled sweet wafer biscuit lined with rich chocolate ganache? The cookie straw is light and crispy with a slightly toasted, sweet wafer and chocolate flavor.

Yeyness right??