December 16, 2015

DIY Salt Dough Ornaments

Our day 4 Advent activity is “Make an ornament or decoration”  so we made salt dough ornaments last December 4. I’ve been meaning to make this ornament but I just couldn’t find the time, as usual December is a very busy month.

Ingredients and materials are always available in your kitchen, all you need is flour, salt, and water for the dough. Bowl, rolling pin, cookie-cutter, straw or paint if you want to color.

Preheat the oven to 325F.

Mix 1 cup flour, 1/2 cup salt, and 1/2 cup water and knead the dough. 

Roll the dough and cut shapes using a cookie cutter

Place on cookie sheets, make a hole using a straw and bake for less than an hour. 

You can paint the ornaments or use food coloring while mixing the dough. 

Our salt dough ornaments are not that successful because some puffed so it didn’t look good. But I will make this project again and reduce the thickness and hoping it won’t puff again. We enjoyed doing this activity even it is not that successful.

December 11, 2015

Gift Giving Philosophy

Christmas is fast approaching and we only have two weeks from now to prepare for the season. Honestly, I haven’t finished my list yet even I started buying gifts since last month. I just could not find time to go to the mall and buy everything that I need, nakakapagod din. Maybe next year, I will start my shopping as early as October. Hehehe! 

For the last few years, I’ve been following this gift giving philosophy in choosing gifts for my son. It really helps me in buying gifts. 

Something they want... 

This is very easy because my son will always tell me his wants so I just take note everything so he can get it on his birthday or Christmas. But I don’t really buy everything on his list, of course, it still depends on our budget. 

Something they need...

I buy something that I think my son needs but it is not in his “want list”. Just like his 7th birthday. I feel that he needs to replace his rubber shoes but he is not asking for it. You can also buy things for his hobbies, school or everyday need. 

Something to wear...

I buy clothes, shoes, watches, jewelry or anything that he can wear. This is easy because every year, we really buy clothes for him kasi mabilis lumaki.

Something to read... 

My son is not fond of reading books but I want him to like books so I make sure that he will read a book before going to bed except for days that we are not at home. Last year, I gave him 365 bedtime stories so he has no excuse not to read a book. This year, I bought Children’s Bible Stories. 

Every year, I buy 3 gifts so I just choose from this gift-giving philosophy. One from my daddy, one from mommy and one from Wowa since my mom sends cash gift and I will be the one to buy. Care to share your gift-giving philosophy.

December 10, 2015

Nutri10Plus Syrup

I believe that all moms want to have healthy children, we want them to be active, strong and away from sickness. We believe that having food supplement is really a must to protect our kids. Our doctor is not a believer of food supplement. He believes that if a child is healthy, no need for vitamins. 

But I know my son well so I still buy vitamins for him. If my son is not a finicky eater, I will not need vitamins but my son is not eating enough veggies and fruits so I really need a food supplement. For the last 7 years, I have tried different vitamins, I asked for suggestions and feedbacks from friends, families and sometimes I checked for different reviews online. There were times that I wasted my money because my son doesn’t like the taste of the vitamins so we will go back to the old vitamins. 

My son has two vitamins, one is vitamin C + zinc and the other one is CGF vitamin. Last month I received this Nutri 10 Plus Syrup and my son is taking this for more than a month already. I’m glad because he likes the taste so no violent reaction. 

Nutri10Plus contains CGF (Chlorella Growth Factor), Taurine, Lysine. Vitamins such as A, D3, E, B1, B2, B3, B6, B12 and C which help in boosting immunity, enhance brain development and increase physical growth. 

CGF (Chlorella Growth Factor) - helps children to grow at an accelerated rate and increase healing of damaged tissue. 

Taurine - is for brain development. It is an anti-anxiety agent and it protects cells from harmful effects of ultraviolet light. 

Lysine - helps boost appetite. 

Zinc - stabilized the molecular structure of cellular components and membranes. It contributes to the maintenance of cell organ integrity. 

Amazing right? There are so many vitamins and minerals that your child can get in 5ml of Nutri10Plus. One thing I like about Nutri10Plus is I can save money because I don’t need to buy two vitamins anymore. 

How about you? Have you tried Nutri10Plus? #aktibotmalakas

December 03, 2015

Lunch at Mesa Filipino Moderne

After church we went straight to SM North for family bonding, this is used to be my go-to mall when I still live in Valenzuela. It’s been 10 years since I moved to South Luzon and now there are so many changes and improvements. Nakakaligaw na talaga siya and almost half of the population was inside the mall. Sobra sa dami ng tao who were busy shopping for holiday. 

We had early lunch and as usual, my mom wanted Filipino food so I asked my brother what are the choices and I told them sa Mesa na lang. We dined here several months ago and we were satisfied with the food and service. Fortunately, they have a function room that can accommodate a big group like us (12 persons). 

We ordered Crispy Boneless Tilapia served with Four Sauces, Inihaw Sampler, Pork BBQ, Pork Binagoongan, Pork Sisig, Kare-Kare, Crab, Seafood Mix in Chili Sauce, Rice and Drinks. 

I haven’t tried the Kare-Kare and Crab so I have reason to go back again. We all had a happy tummy.

Related Post: 
MESA Southmall

December 02, 2015

DIY Handmade Dolls

We’re so busy these past few days because my mom just came back from Norway. We were supposed to go to St. James Bazaar last Saturday but the traffic was so bad so after wasting our time in Commerce Ave, nag U-Turn na lang kami and we decided to go to the airport to pick up my mom at baka matraffic din kami. We were so early so we waited for 2 hours. 

Of course, there is always pasalubong for the grandchildren. Aside from chocolates, my mom brought her handmade doll. I don’t know how to knit or crochet but we’re blessed to have a mom who has this skill. My mom made these dolls, rush order since biglaan ang uwi. Hehehe! 

Two years ago, my mom gave a handmade doll to my son but he was so curious so he cut the yarn to see what is inside the doll. Check it here.

But I hope he will not perform any surgery on this doll. She is selling her craft in Norway and I told her to open an online shop. Hehehe!

Abe’s Museum

A trip in Abe’s Farm won’t be complete without visiting Abe’s Museum. Yes, Abe’s Farm is not just a restaurant, it is a resort with spa and museum. So after eating our meal, off we went to the museum. It was a long walk from the restaurant, parang natunaw na agad ang aking mga kinain. Hehehe!

My husband already visited the museum and he said free lang naman but we were surprised that the museum is no longer free, P30 per person. We gave our payment to the staff who ushered us to the museum. No receipt or ticket for that. 

About Abe Museum

“The Abe Museum contains collections on the lives of two men who have influenced the way Manileños eat, think and live”. Artists, designers and writers benefited from the experiences of father and son Abe (E. Aguilar Cruz 1915-1991) and Larry (1941-2008). Their Capampangan-Tagalog ways shaped a number of generations in the process. It is only fitting to return their remembrances to Magalang, where Abe was born, where Larry returned to late in life and the Cruzes notions of graceful living began.” 

November 26, 2015

Christmas Countdown

Just like that November is about to end and we are going to start our Christmas countdown next week. Since I will be busy this coming long weekend because my mom would be home for vacation, I finished the Advent calendar and Christmas countdown yesterday. 

Since I have no much time to prepare, I just reuse the DIY Advent Calendar that I’ve made last year. I have to replace the two wrinkled envelopes and listed treats or tasks for 24 days.

1. Today we decorate the Christmas tree 
2. Listen to fun Christmas music.
3. Learn about the Legend of the Candy Cane.
4. Make an ornament or decoration 
5. Read a new Christmas story 
6. Go for a drive to see the Christmas lights. 
7. Make a Christmas card. 
8. Learn about holidays in another culture 
9. Make a Christmas card. 
10. You get to play an iPad game of your choice for 40minutes. 
11. Make a gift for someone special. 
12. Record yourself singing a favorite Christmas song. 
13. Adding one item to the grocery list. 
14. Call someone you love just to say hi! 
15. A Special Christmas treat. 
16. Hot chocolate made especially for you. 
17. Write a letter to Jesus. 
18. Staying up 20 minutes past bedtime. 
19. Watch a special Christmas movie with treats. 
20. Bake Christmas cookies.
21. It’s a family game night. 
22. Playing a game of your choice. 
23. Unwrap one present early 
24. Read Luke 2, 1-20; A Christmas Story. 

Then I printed a Santa Claus Christmas countdown

How about you? Are you ready for the holidays? 

Santa Claus Christmas Countdown
Christmas Coupon

November 25, 2015

Lunch at Abe’s Farm

I’ve been meaning to visit Abe’s Farm for the longest time but it is located in Pampanga so it took me a long time to visit this place. Good thing that there is Abe’s restaurant here in the metro, which we have visited several times already.

Abe’s Farm is not just a restaurant, they also offer room accommodation, spa services and a museum. It is like Nurture Wellness Village in Tagaytay but a bigger version. 

We really wanted to eat in Abe’s Farm so even we were hungry already because it is past 12nn, we still went to the farm, tiis gutom na lang. It was a long drive from Dinosaurs Island.

But it is worth the wait because the place is really nice. The house is also the restaurant. It is big and it has different rooms which can accommodate more guests.

The staff gave us the menu, I was surprised to see the menu because they have more choices here compared to the restaurant. Price is much cheaper too, our bill is less than P1k for food and drinks. :) My husband suggested the monggo so we ordered Grilled Liempo P250 and Monggo Bean Soup P95

While waiting for our food, we went out to check the farm. 

We went back after a few minutes and they served the food. The looks of the food are not appetizing but don’t judge the look because it is really good. The monggo has few ingredients (smoked fish and chicharon) but it is flavorful, the serving is so small, good for one person. I hope they have a big serving, mura lang naman ang monggo. Hehehe! 

We also ordered Leche Flan P75 and Sikreto ni Maria P165 for dessert. The menu will not inform you what is in Sikreto ni Maria so it is really a secret unless you order it. Hehehe! Anyway, this dessert is a combination of sticky rice, ripe mangoes, semi-frozen macapuno ice cream and grated panutsa. We liked it.

After eating my husband said that there is also a museum, he asked the staff if we could check it and they said yes. I will share it on my next post. :) 

Abe’s Farm Resort, Country Cuisine and Spa

98 Livestock Village, 
Barangay Ayala 
Magalang, Pampanga 

Business Hours: Open daily, 10:00 AM - 8:00 PM 

For overnight accommodations, pre-booking is needed 
Contact: Phone: + (02) 506-8140 Mobile: + (0917) 808-5187 

Read: Abe

Abe's Farm 2017

November 23, 2015

When Plan Fails

I’m a type of person who likes to plan, short-term or long-term goal. I also love to write a list of things to do, things to buy and many more because I want everything to be organized. But sometimes no matter how you plan, you cannot control everything. There will come a time that you feel that everything is not falling into place. 

As early as July, I already knew that Nov 18 and 19 is a special non-working holiday because of APEC Summit (NCR). I immediately informed my husband to mark his calendar. But come November, he told me that he needs to go to Singapore for his conference Nov. 19-20. I was really disappointed because he will work on holiday, sayang yung two days. And again because of APEC, there were cancellations of flights and no-fly out advisory so the supposed to be 3 days business trip became 7 days, Nov.15 to 21. He was in Indonesia and Singapore last week. #feelingofwwife

I also informed him that my son’s Field Trip is Nov. 23 so he can file a vacation leave just in case my son wanted to join. He already filed a leave but unfortunately, the date of the conference (Philippines) moved to Nov. 23-24. Waah!

I was already thinking how I can persuade my son not to join the field trip. Unlike in preschool, parents can still accompany their kids but my son is now in grade school and no chaperone allowed.

Last Monday, I already received the itinerary and waiver form for my son’s Field Trip. They are going to 

SOS Children’s Village 
Rave of Pasig 
Repertory Philippines 
PAF Aerospace Museum 

Me: Do you want to join the Field Trip?
Ethan: Yes 
Me: Even without mommy? 
Ethan: How about daddy? 
Me: No chaperone allowed so we can’t go with you. 
Ethan: What is a chaperone? 
Me: Someone who can accompany you like mommy, daddy or guardian. 
Ethan: Ayaw, scared ako if no mommy and daddy. How can I go to CR? 

I felt sad because my son wanted to join but because of the no chaperone policy, he declined. But I felt relieved because I don’t need to convince him, he made my life easier because he did not want to go. I even asked him the following day just to make sure that he is firm with his decision. 

After school, I asked him if his classmates are joining the Field Trip and he said yes. I asked him, kung ok lang sa kanya na hindi siya kasama and he said yes. If only my husband is available. I will tell my son na susundan namin siya. We can do convoy just to make sure that he is okay and he won’t be lost. Or we can do our own field trip. Yes, I’m a paranoid mom, because I still can’t forget my “Where is my Son?” experience. 

So even I already paid for this Field Trip because it is included in our tuition, I’m happy because I have peace of mind. Today is our rest day because he did not join the Field Trip. 

"Peace of mind comes when you stop expecting and start accepting".

November 20, 2015

Dinosaurs Island at Clark Pampanga

My son fell in love with the dinosaurs after watching Jurassic Park movie. He was only 5 years old at that time and I don’t understand why he liked it. But we were watching Jurassic Park 1, 2 and 3 for the last two years. So when I learned that there is Dinosaurs Island in Clark, Pampanga I immediately added it in our bucket list.

He was so happy when we visited Universal Studio Singapore last year because there is The Lost World Zone and we rode Jurassic Park Rapids Adventure.We’re supposed to go to Dinosaurs Island (reward after graduation) last summer but time did not permit us. So when my son told me that he wanted to watch Jurassic World movie last June, I agree with his demand kahit namamahalan ko sa movie ticket. Lol

We live in Southern Luzon so planning a trip up north is not easy. We need time and budget, ilang toll fee din yan. Hehehe! Finally, last sembreak we visited Dinosaurs Island.

Dinosaurs Island Entrance Fee 

P350 regular
P300 students (private school)

The entrance includes the Dinosaur Island exhibit, Dino Museum, and World of Fun. There was no map, flyers or tour guide so we tour the theme park on our own. You will not be lost because there are signs everywhere. I’ve seen a lot of pictures of Dinosaurs Island but I did not expect that those dinosaurs are moving. It was a different experience because you can hear dinosaurs sound and they are moving. Watch the video

Dinosaur Island Exhibit 

Each dinosaur has its own description so just read, it was funny because my son even remembers some dinosaurs that he saw in the Jurassic Park movie.

Dino Museum 

There is also Feeding Dino activity.

World of Fun 

The park is not that big, I was surprised na tapos na agad kami. The end part of the park is the Mascot Dino World of Fun. You can see dancing dinosaurs here, ito yung aliw na part. Even we know that it is just a mascot, napapasigaw pa rin kami pag lumalapit. Hehehe!

After the show, I paid another P100/person for the Jurassic Jungle Safari. It was less than 5 minutes ride. We were done in less than an hour so I find the entrance fee expensive. Maybe if other activities are included in P350, worth it na. But you have to pay extra for Jungle Safari Ride, Wonders of the world and 7D.

Read: Pampanga Road Trip
DIY Dinosaurs Plush Toy

Dinosaurs Island Clark
Clark Picnic Grounds,
Gil Puyat Ave, Mabalacat, 2023
Pampanga Mon to Sunday 9 to 5PM

Pampanga Road Trip

One advantage of land travel is you can do side tripping to maximize your trip and to save time and effort. On our way home from Bataan, we decided to drop by at Dinosaurs Island in Clark Pampanga. My son wanted to visit this place and it’s supposed to be our treat when he graduated with an award. But Pampanga is so far from where we live parang nakakapagod if we will just have a day trip. 

Finally, after several months we were able to visit Dinosaurs Island. My son was really excited when I told him that we will go here after our Bataan WWII Museum visit. I’ll share it on a separate post.  

After Dinousaurs Island, we checked the El Kabayo but no one was interested for horse back riding at tirik na tirik ang araw. It was past 12nn so we prefer to eat na lang. 

My husband knew that there is one restaurant that I’ve been meaning to try in Pampanga so at last, I was able to cross it out in my bucket list. We are frequent diner of Abe’s restaurant so I was glad that I finally visited Abe’s Farm

After eating we also checked the Abe’s Museum, unfortunately it is no longer free. According to my husband, free lang daw dati nung last visit nila, now P30 each. 

Pampanga is not only known for Hot Air Ballon Festival because there are more places to explore. I want to check the zoo and revisit Nayong Pilipino, maybe on our next side trip. 

November 19, 2015

Bataan Historical Site

Bataan is a province which is rich in history, it is known for World War II and Bataan Death March. It is sad to know that there were lots of people died in that war but we should not forget their courage to fight and defend our country.

There are so many historical sites that you can visit in Bataan, I have visited some of the sites last year when we had a Bataan Road Trip. We were able to check the Mt Samat, Zero Kilometer Death March Marker and Philippine-Japan Friendship Tower.  

Last sembreak, we stayed in The Plaza Hotel in Balanga, Bataan, which is the capital of the province. I searched for possible places that we could visit in Balanga, Bataan for our side trip. 

1. Bataan World War II Museum 
2. St. Joseph’s Cathedral or Balanga Cathedral 
3. Surrender Site Marker 
4. Tortugas Bird Site 
5. Flaming Sword 
6. Balanga Nature and Wetland Park 
7. Bataan National Park 

Due to time constraint, we just visited three places. We were lucky that the St. Joseph Cathedral is just in front of our hotel. This church was used as an artillery emplacement during the Japanese invasion. It was renovated by Bishop Celso Guevarra, the first bishop of the Diocese. 

Then we went to Balanga Elementary School where the Surrender Site Marker and Bataan World War II Museum is located. This school served as the command post of Lt. Gen. Homma at the time of Bataan’s surrender. 

At the back of the school you can see the Surrender Site Marker, this marked the exact spot where surrender terms were negotiated by Major General Edward King with Japanese Colonel Motoo Nakayama (who represented Gen. Homma) on April 9, 1942 after three months of relentless siege by invaders. 

We waited for few minutes because the Bataan World War II Museum was still closed. The museum was opened last February 2014, it was just a small museum where you can see pictures, war artifacts, doll diorama of Death March and 9 minutes video during World War II. Picture taking is not allowed. 

Entrance fee: P50 adults P20 students P40 senior citizens 
Operating Hours: Mon to Sat, 9AM to 4PM 

Even the museum is small, there's a tour guide that will tour you so you will learn new information and personal stories of World War II which is not written in history books. 

Before we left, the tour guide informed us that the Torture Chamber was also inside the school. This is used by the Japanese to torture Filipino and American Soldiers. 

After I took this picture, my husband asked me.

Hubby: kinunan mo ng picture? 
Me: Yes, bakit? 
Hubby: Wala lang, parang nakakatakot mamaya may lumabas sa picture. Dami namatay diyan. 

Honestly, natakot ako and parang ayaw ko tingnan picture. Isa kong matatakutin pa naman so sa biyahe namin napapaisip ako then I realized na bakit sa cemetery, marami din naman patay pero pag dumadalaw mga tao nagpapipicture. Hehehe! 

Bataan has fallen, but the spirit that made it stand- a beacon to all the liberty-loving peoples of the world cannot fall. - excepts from a radio broadcast from Corregidor.