Tuesday, December 20, 2016

... Tis the most wonderful time of the year ...

... And dare I say ... it is also the most stressful time of the year!

Alright I don't want my last post for 2016 to focus on the negative, hehehe. 

I know that despite the stress and the toils of living in a highly urbanized city where Edsa traffic is a daily nightmare, waiting for hours just to find a tiny parking slot at very overcrowded malls + the worries about the hubby's highly demanding job ... I am extremely grateful for the abundance of blessings that embrace me and my family.

My original plan was to do an extensive 'year-end' report kinda post, but as usual I am running out of time. Just taking a short break from packing to write this post from my smartphone putting random thoughts together to form paragraphs that hopefully convey my state of mind.

Yes, D & D are off tomorrow to the land of dimsum and dumplings to join my parents (they went ahead) and sister for the Yuletide holidays. 

I'm excited and really looking forward to this trip which I booked really last minute as I wasn't sure about D's erratic schedule.

Let me end by wishing everyone happy holidays and may 2017 be another wonderful year!!! 

Friday, November 04, 2016

Ayala Museum, Greenbelt Makati

I love museums. I remember when we were based in Singapore, I would drop by this tiny museum after a long day at work and just sit and reflect on the art works. It was a calming experience. Ah the perks of being single and free to just do anything I wanted. I miss it, more than I care to admit, frankly.

On the second day of October, my sister turned 45 years old and after a sumptuous lunch at Sentro 1771, she wanted to do something different. 

She expressed a desire to go to the Ayala Museum. I couldn't agree more. But by the time we were done with lunch and some window shopping around the Greenbelt complex, it was already 4:30 P.M and the museum was only open until 6 P.M

The lady at the lobby though said we had ample time if we went directly to the 2nd and 4th floors. So we had a quick look see through the Crossroads of Civilizations which exhibited the Gold of Ancestors on the 4th floor. Photographs were not allowed in this section which displayed the brilliant gold jewelry of ancient tribes. 

Then to the 2nd floor to see the Diorama Experience. 60 panels in chronological order that are designed to be a comprehensive visual approach to Philippine history.

It would have been better if we had more time but it was a pleasant experience, nonetheless. They are open from Tuesdays to Sundays 9 AM - 6 PM. Different tickets prices depending on what sections you want to visit. Senior citizens can enter at discounted rates. While members of the academe + one person are free of charge, simply present your school ID card. 

Monday, October 24, 2016

I'm back

My sister's two weeks vacation was hectic, as usual.  We spent it at her doctor's clinics for her post surgery follow up check ups. All her lab results were good, thank God for that.

We were able to complete our pilgrimage tour of 5 Jubilee churches (will blog about it soon) and also sneaked in a quick visit to the Ayala Museum (post coming up). 

Naturally we also spent it eating, eating and eating. We celebrated 2 birthdays, my hubby (Sept. 28) and my sister (Oct. 2) and on the eve of her flight we also celebrated in advance mine (Oct. 19).

We had Filipino fusion food at Sentro 1771, in Greenbelt.

Pancit Palabok, Catfish, Fish and Tofu Torta

Chinese food at HK Chef along Macapagal Avenue.

Steamed Fish and Peking Duck

Americana at Tony Roma's in Glorietta 4 and Chili's, Megamall

Baby Back Ribs (Tony Roma's)

Quesadillas (Chili's)

Thai food at Mango Tree Bistro, Greenbelt 3

Phad Thai, Chicken Rice and Spare Ribs

Filipino cuisine at Barrio Fiesta and Abe, both at Megamall

Barrio Fiesta's Famous Kare Kare and

Crispy Pata

Our usual order at Abe are Pork Humba, Laing, Rellenong Alimango
with Bamboo Rice

Japanese Katsu at Kimukatsu, Edsa Shangri-la

Seafood Set and Edamame

Persian cuisine at Arya Persian Restaurant at Edsa Shangri-la

Grilled Platter and Pilaf and Basmati Rice

The highlight was our buffet at Spiral located at the Sofitel Hotel to celebrate the birthdays of the hubby and sister dearest.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Presenting ... the crispy pork belly!

I admit I am NOT a pork eater. From 1995 to 2001, we were based in Dubai and I reckon that is when I 'removed' pork from my diet regimen. It was more for health reasons than anything else. 

On the other hand, my sister simply loves pork! She consumes it a lot. When we are in HK, she takes the liberty to order whenever we dine outside. A staple dish in most, if not all of our sorties is the very delicious yet sinful crispy pork belly.

This delicacy consists of deep fried pork belly cubes/squares with a very thin and crispy layer of skin and tender meat.

It usually comes with a mustard condiment. This gives it a sort of bitter, tangy taste but I personally prefer to eat it on its own.

The way the pork belly is cut gives it an equal amount of fat and meat. Believe it or not, it isn't oily at all.  I guess they have a special technique of cooking it.

I've grown to love eating the crispy pork belly but no longer on a daily or every other day basis because I value my health. But, surely now I have something to look forward to on our next visit.

Monday, September 12, 2016


Over a week ago we landed in Manila around 9 PM and mind you ... it took us longer to get home than the actual flight. Gosh, The flight time was 1 hour and 45 minutes and we even landed ahead of our estimated time of arrival by 5 minutes. Then traffic was terrible even for a Saturday evening so 2 and a half hours later, we stepped into our house,  really tired and hungry. 

I stayed at my parents for one week 'decompressing'. You know the way astronauts who return to Earth do after they spend days on end in the vast outer space. I was tired, fat (I gained 5 kilos just from this two weeks trip!) and quite lazy to do anything. I slept most of the week away just getting out of my room to have meals then cozy up back in bed, reading or watching films on my laptop. I wasn't sick or anything ... I felt fine physically but mentally I was zapped. I can't really explain it.

But the biggest surprise and I guess quite embarrassing to admit is that my elderly parents were and still are perky, hyper and energetic! I really admire their stamina and their endurance level is quite amazing. I am in awe!

We had a lot of fun ... it was mostly a food trip. We didn't visit any tourist attractions. It was all about dining out, tasting different cuisines. Most of the restaurants we visited are the places which my sister who lives alone wanted to try. She even made a (long) list of all these restaurants she wanted to eat in. It was really a gastronomic feast as she would order all those delicious dishes which were very flavorful and such a delight to experience. I had a great time!

So now I'm back home with the hubby. The place is still standing as expected but it does need a feminine touch so I should stop being lazy and just do it. But first on the agenda tomorrow morning is to walk away the pounds and resume my exercise regimen. These extra 5 kilos need to disappear .... ASAP! They aren't welcome anymore! :D

Friday, August 05, 2016

August na!

I'm really glad that the month of August is upon us. Hopefully in two weeks time I will be seeing this amazing structure yet again well if we can squeeze it into our agenda. But what is certain is we will be celebrating my dad's milestone birthday with my sister in the land of dumplings and dimsum. =)

It has been barely a month since his promotion so D cannot take vacation leave so unfortunately he cannot join us ... I'm sure he can manage.

2 weeks away from this constant noise pollution from the public utility vehicles (jeepneys) that have invaded our once quiet neighborhood isn't too much to ask, is it? I am a person who highly values peace and quiet ... sometimes to a fault! I am a taciturn individual who prefers the sound of silence, I don't do well in crowded and loud environments ... but I need to adjust or else I would go bonkers!

My nerves are already frayed from lack of sleep (probably not the PUVs fault!) and a general sense of malaise which I can't seem to get rid of even if I accumulate huge amounts of endorphins from exercising 6 days a week.

Tata for now .. I'll be back in September.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Friday night thoughts

So time says it is 11:56 PM on this relatively cooler Friday night. The rains earlier this evening must have lowered the temperatures.

The dog in the house across the street is barking for no reason, as usual. While the neighbors in the apartment adjacent to ours is watching some movie with the volume on full blast.

I don't know if they are deaf or perhaps since it is Friday they assume they can just relax and make some noise since they don't have work tomorrow.

But the thing is D does have work tomorrow.  Ever since he got promoted, he is on call like 7 days a week. Last weekend, he spent it at work and slept there in his office as there were several delegations in town.

In times like these when I find myself having dinner by my lonesome self, I have this mantra I like to keep reciting to myself which is Voltaire's quote: "With great power comes great responsibility."

But I guess all this ranting of mine is pretty one sided because truth be told ... D has been snoring away beside me for the past 2 hours now ... completely oblivious of the noise from the blaring TV and the barking dog.

Oh right ... I'm the light sleeper in this household.  I need complete silence to get a good night sleep ... and lately it has been my main problem ... sleep or the lack of it.

End of rant!

Saturday, July 09, 2016

Life as I know it

I feel lighter and leaner from all the hours I spend exercising. From 3 times a week I have progressed to 5 days a week now. I am amazed at how focused I have become ... I guess the joint pains pushed me to my limits. It is difficult to be in pain all the time so I resolved to be healthier. I admit there are still some aches in my joints but it isn't as severe as previously experienced. Hurray!

The monsoon rains are upon us and wow it really pours. So far, classes have been suspended twice and we are told to expect more inclement weather in the coming months. This drastically lowers the temperatures which I'd say is a welcome break from the brutally hot summer we had this year.

Speaking of welcome break, D is due for a promotion. I am excited and also a bit apprehensive as it is a rather sensitive position. The added duties (aside from his usual teaching load) involves long hours and he might also get assigned to the different branches of the institution. I am really proud of him and will continue to pray for his success, always.

That's all for now ... time for me to walk, walk ... walk away the pounds! =)