Sunday, May 19, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 363 - Values

If there's anything that made the past weekends, it's GrabFood. Food delivery is life on weekends. I used to be contented with late night burgers and early morning breakfasts from McDonald's. But when I discovered more choices from GrabFood, weekends became more sinful. :p For a minimal delivery fee of Php 50, I can enjoy my favorite fruit shakes, ramen, dimsum from my neighborhood food joints. Sometimes, it appears expensive because I have to devote tips to the riders. But being able to enjoy food within the comforts of home is priceless. It's still cheaper because I don't have to take the hassles of going out. <Introvert mode on>

Saturday, May 18, 2019

4 design tips for older homes

Getting to build or buy a brand-new house is a dream for many prospective homeowners, but oftentimes the reality of acquiring a residence proves to be rather different. A variety of reasons can push buyers to purchase an older house instead of a newly constructed one, but in the end, almost everyone faces the challenge of redecorating and personalizing their not-so-new home. Short of ordering major renovations and remodeling, homeowners can employ some clever decorating tricks to spruce up their older houses. Here we have four relatively simple and inexpensive design tips to turn a preloved house into the home of your dreams. 

4 housewarming gifts for newlyweds


The joy and celebration of a new marriage does not end at the reception! Even after the thank you cards are sent out, there are still several more occasions to wish the newlyweds all the happiness in their married life. One such event is the housewarming, which officially signals that a couple’s home is in order and ready to welcome family and friends. 

Where to eat in Japan


In days gone by, all roads led to Rome. Nowadays, all roads (and flights) lead to Japan, the Land of the Rising Sun. Apart from the annual cherry blossoms and other cultural sights and experiences, a great reason to head to Japan is its wonderful culinary scene. Japanese chefs are renowned for their finesse, love of innovation, as well as their appreciation of their local traditions. It seems there is no end to the creativity in Japanese cuisine, and it would be a shame to miss out. For gourmets and gourmands alike, read on for a list of must-eat dishes in Japan, and where to find them! 

Monday, May 13, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 362 - The Element of Tao

And my addiction to The Body Shop's Drops of Youth Line continues. It started with the Youth Cream last year. A few weeks ago, I bought the Liquid Peel and recently, the Bouncy Eye Mask. The mask is designed to prevent puffiness, signs of fatigue and dark circles around the eye area. I used the mask with my rose quartz roller. I struggle with puffy eyelids these days. The roller and eye mask did not totally prevent, but I'm satisfied how it made my eyes look better. In the Philippines, the Drops of Youth has eight product lines. I'm tempted to try everything. But given my limited budget, I will be contented with one more product, the Youth Fresh Emulsion serum. 

Monday, May 6, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 361 - Come What May

Still writing for the summer of 2019  and the weather remains unbearable. :( In the photo are some of my current favorites. I mentioned many times in this blog my addiction to The Body Shop's Drops of Youth line. The Youth Cream is the best. I'm currently using the Liquid Peel and results are pretty impressive. Yesterday, I bought the eye cream and if resources permit, I might try the facial serum. I'm also enjoying my rose quartz face roller. It claims to be an anti-aging tool, I have yet to prove. :p I'm more than contented with its cooling effect and how it amazingly prevents puffy eyes and eye bags. 

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 360 - Shades of Blue

I'm still gathering my thoughts.  I wanted to write but my thoughts feel so messed up these days. I can't help but browse my previous summer photos. Everything feels lighter and happier. I'm concentrated on my office work. I have spare time to send postcards. I can catch sunsets after work. Last year, I even have spare money from freelance works. I was able to book staycations with my friend A.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 359 - After the holiday break and Easter Giveaway Winner

Despite what happened yesterday, today was a quiet and restful day at home. I took advantage of the time to complete a freelance work. I worked the entire Monday night, because I can't sleep anyway after the earthquake. I accomplished everything before sunrise and spent the entire day catching on sleep and treating my family for food delivery. We had a great Chinese takeaway to end the day. Sometimes, I wish life works this way. I can work from home during night time, when the entire surrounding is at peace. I don't have to worry for traffic and all hassles of commuting. I don't have to deal with unreasonable colleagues. I don't gain enemies. My performance is determined on the output I delivered. Everything is pure bliss of professionalism. I can even squeeze in some exercise or quick morning jog every day. My introvert hormones are overpowering me again. :p This has always been my long term goal. Unfortunately, I have yet to find a company in the Philippines that works on this system. Unless otherwise, I'll pioneer a company that supports this working arrangement. 

Sunday, April 21, 2019

An Easter Giveaway

Because I want to spread good vibes on Easter Sunday, I'm hosting a simple book giveaway. Kindly enter your responses on this linked form

PS This is exclusive for Philippine based readers only. Thank you. 

Saturday, April 20, 2019

Korean Drama Review : Sky Castle


When this year started, I was looking for a Korean drama to binge watch.  I checked what most other people watched, What's Wrong with Secretary Kim, Something in the Rain and A Korean Odyssey. I only stayed for a few episodes. Either I got bored or was annoyed by one of the lead characters. The nearest I finished was A Korean Odyssey because of Sung Hyuk. :p  I was expecting to finish What's Wrong with Secretary Kim because I always liked the genre of romantic comedies. But for some reason, I started to dislike both the acting and character of Park Min Young.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 358 - Season Ending

A few more days and I'm off from work. I've been looking forward for this week since April started. In the past years, I usually use my leave credits to extend my Holy Week break. But bigger responsibilities came, I have to give way. I have to step in for colleagues, who needed more time for their family. Nevertheless, my excitement for the succeeding days cannot be diminished. It's time to take a breather and continue some Holy Week traditions with the family.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 357 - Mid April

March was chaotic. I thought April will be the opposite. I was expecting a relatively relaxing month. But surprises came along the way. These days, it felt like the month of March was extended. I checked my posts from last year on the months of April. How I wish everything remained the same. My classes should have been over. I'm having laid back lunch breaks with my friends. I can catch sunsets after an entire day of work. I have more time in my hands. But these days, I'm still beating deadlines. Worst comes to worst, the charger of my workplace's laptop gave up after 6 years. :(

Friday, April 5, 2019

Burrow Café at Antipolo Beehouse

I was expecting the last week of March to be the most exhausting for this year. As mentioned in my previous post, it was my first attempt to co-organize a summit for students and colleagues. After months of preparation and cramming to the last minute, everything turned out well. Thanks be to God!!! But more importantly, my colleagues who served as my support system.

Thursday, April 4, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 356 - Two Sundays

And just like that, March is over. The first quarter of the year is gone. A few weeks ago, I was savoring the rare cold weather in Manila. The past few days, summer is starting to be felt. Not really my favorite season, especially with the water shortage in Manila. The interruption in water supply is causing everyone to make adjustments. If essential needs such as constant water supply cannot be provided, I guess I should lower my expectations on other critical social issues?

6 countries where Filipinos can travel visa-free

Filipinos by nature are wanderlust. We love exploring, traveling, discovering and experiencing the thrill. We have a knack for anything adventurous. And because we love to go out, sometimes extensive processing of paperwork can be tiresome and expensive for us. Good thing, ASEAN allows its member states’ citizens to go to and fro of each country without a visa as part of its initiative to building one ASEAN community. Less process, less hassle and more time to plan things ahead. But which countries are really visa-free for us Filipinos?

Below are six countries that have confirmed visa-free arrangements with the Philippines.

7 Must-Read Classic Books

Reading never goes out of style. Regardless of the format, be it on traditional paper or on e-readers, books make timeless companions for persons of all ages and generations. Here we have 7 of our top picks of the must-read classics, perfect for spending a quiet day or taking a break from the frenetic pace of modern life.

5 interior designers that focus on sustainability

One of the new buzzwords in the realm of design is sustainable. In this era of climate change, alongside the call to adopt a waste-free lifestyle, designers have stepped up their game to come up with and execute concepts for cutting down on energy and water consumption and making use of materials that are recycled, recyclable, or do not add to pollution in the surroundings.  Who are the faces and firms behind this new wave, especially in interior design? Learn more about some of the cutting-edge names in the business here! 

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 355 - Wish List

If there's anything that made the past weekend other than sleep, it's food. Lots of carbs, sugar and anything that cause weight gain. :p Maybe, I can be forgiven if I'm doing some exercise. But lately, the religious routine of exercising three times a week is gone. I have been using spare hours to either sleep or check my social media accounts. I read my journal entries last year and much to my surprise, I was able to carry out a 5-day exercise?!? Where did I get the strength and inspiration last year? I haven't checked my weight lately and I don't have plans until I get my drive to exercise again. :p

Tips for Traveling on a Budget

Seeing the world need not cost an arm and a leg, or all of next year’s salary. With a little savvy and plenty of patience, it is feasible to go from shore to shore on a shoestring. The key to making the best of your money is careful planning as well as a clear itinerary, which will allow you to carefully itemize your potential expenses as well as have a little set aside for emergencies. Read on for more tips and lifehacks for the cash-strapped jetsetter, or just anyone traveling on a budget. 

4 tips to design your dorm room to maximize productivity and creativity

Living on your own is a daunting experience. You don’t have anyone to cook for you, do the laundry, and even wake yourself up in the morning. You are literally on your own managing your studies and personal life. And because you are living in a dormitory, you are bound to have a roommate. It is not just space you will share but even stories, secrets and memorable experiences which will compromise much of your college life. It is important then to have good communication with your roommate then.
On average a dorm is around 228 square feet. It indeed pays to maximize each space for both study and extracurricular activities. While there is a bunch of things your parents would want you to bring, but you should know which is necessary and which is not. 

Eating Habits all University Students Must do


University or college life is a roller coaster ride. The tons of requirements and the stressful time management leads to unhealthy eating patterns and intermittent sleeping habits. But just because you are busy does not mean you can’t live healthy. In most cases, university students tend to be inconsistent with their habits and established patterns when they are at home. 

Monday, March 11, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 354 - That familiar sadness

The past weekends, as always, don't feel enough. Saturdays are devoted for getting that much needed sleep. Sundays are for freelance works or if not, some take home tasks from teaching. As much as I'd like to say that time is not enough, I was reminded by the fact that all of us have the same 24 hours. This brings me, maybe I'm either loaded with work or too poor on time management. I'm inclined to believe in the latter. I sleep the entire day. I spent so much time in my mobile phone. I lie in bed either thinking of nothing or worrying about everything. That's how life has been over the past weekends. It feels as if everything has been programmed. Somehow, I feel useless and worthless.

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 353 - Bothered

I woke up feeling worried this morning. I dreamt losing one of my teeth. I grew up hearing the belief of elder family members, it signals an upcoming death. I felt bothered even though over time, I read a number of articles relating a different meaning. Some experts claimed that losing your teeth in a dream signifies the presence of stress, having fears on death and aging, symbolizes a new start, undergoing a life changing state and sometimes, insinuates the presence of anxiety. The articles I read seemed to provide the valid explanations. I have so much fears and worries lately. I'm on a stage of making decisions. I'm feeling restless with the unexpected workload. A freelance work has also been testing my patience, I'm forced to do something impossible. I feel like a mess. I feel so disorganized. My thoughts are all scattered. All these probably explained my dream. If there's anything that can comfort me these days, it's the presence of supportive friends and family, great food and the thought that nothing stays permanent. Soon enough, this will be over and I will be moving on a new stage. Hopefully, a better state. 

Korean Green Onion Salad : The Filipino Way

Last week, I was too excited to introduce Samgyeopsal to my least adventurous family members. Prior to the weekend, I read a number of food blogs showcasing their own DIY samgyeopsal. I came across My Korean Kitchen and encountered for the first time, Korean Spicy Green Onion Salad

Monday, February 25, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 352 - Appreciation

The rare times, when a holiday fell on a Monday. It's a sure treat because as always, weekends don't feel enough these days. I spent my quiet time at home with my family. I'm still watching Sky Castle, my first Korean drama this year. I slept for as long as I wanted. The highlight is when I was able to convince my least adventurous family members to try Samgyeopsal.

DIY Samgyeopsal: The Filipino Way and how much it costs

Blame all the Korean drama series I watched. I cannot anymore remember when my addiction to samyeopsal started. Years ago, finding a Korean restaurant in Manila is quite a challenge. Thankful to all the brave and innovative entrepreneurs, having a Korean meal became accessible and affordable to Filipinos. Every now and then, a Korean grill restaurant is sprouting in the city.

Monday, February 18, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 351 - Recovery

A few weeks ago, I was complaining how the first month of the year seems to be so long. It was physically and emotionally draining. Set aside the freelance works, it was a challenging month. When February came, I told myself this will be my month of recovery. Half way this month, I can say that I'm gradually coping. I hope so ... I hope this will carry on this week until the succeeding months. 

I've been counting the days to weekends. As always, the best way to start the weekend is to have a great breakfast. Blame a local cooking show, I decided to have mashed potato and chorizo for weekends. It's my first time to make mashed potatoes from real potatoes. I skipped the convenient powdered version sold in supermarkets. With the help of cheese, milk, butter and bacon strips, I was able to make my own perfect version. Though I admit, the bacon was a sinful addition. ;) Maybe next time, I'll add strips of vegetables or use asparagus as side dish instead.

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Reviewed! 1919 Grand Cafe

A few months ago. I encountered a Facebook post featuring this Cafe. Its location was quite a surprise. It is situated in the stretch of Juan Luna Street, a few steps from Pasig River dock in Manila and the popular arch of Binondo. The surrounding area is not really the safest place in Manila. I never imagined a grand restaurant to emerge in the area. 

Saturday, February 16, 2019

National Bookstore Superbranch Cubao's Book Blowout

The four-storey National Bookstore in the heart of Araneta Center has always been one of my favorite places. I had so much memories from this bookstore. I visit the branch with my mother for our annual back to school shopping. In college, I relied on it for hard to find textbooks. I still remember how this branch was considered as the grandest bookstore in Manila. The ground floor was filled with the usual school and office supplies. The second floor housed the fiction reads. The third floor was devoted for text books, school references and those expensive coffee table books. It even has a coffee shop and library where anyone can grab and read a book. The last floor is my favorite. The entire floor was a home for all bargain books. As an additional treat, the glass panel windows provides a skyscrapping view of the Araneta Center. 

Today, the branch maintains only two floors. :( I cannot remember when the management downsized its operations. The school and office supplies remained on the ground floor and all books squeezed in the second floor. I still drop by the branch occasionally. I still love it, although admittedly, so much can be improved from its operations. I'll devote that in another post. ;) 

I think I said a lot. :D The real purpose of this post is to share my experience from an unexpected book sale. I wasn't aware that this branch is hosting a three-day book sale, not until I saw a sponsored Instagram post. The timing was perfect since it was Friday payday. My initial plan was as always, to look around. I arrived around 7 pm but soon enough, I needed a basket to carry my purchases. ;)

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 350 - Taking time off from work

The past weekends were always spent rushing some freelance works. After several weeks, I finally have a free weekend. I didn't plan anything, all I wanted was to spent much time sleeping. I had more than enough, but as of typing this, part of me still feels that this weekend was not enough. Or maybe, I just feel lazy to return for work. 

The past week was quite full. It started when we braved the streets of Binondo on the eve of Chinese New Year. We had dinner and watched the dragon dance in Ongpin Street. Though I noticed, the decors and festivities seemed to lessen over time. I went home full and spent the holiday at home. On Thursday, I took time off from work and I have to say, it was a great decision. I attended to some errands, had a bowl of laksa, dropped by Landmark (the home section is my favorite) and also checked out Zara's ongoing sale. :p  To all the working girls reading this post, I highly encourage taking a leave from work, when you feel the need to have it. It does not necessarily mean an out-of-town getaway. Visiting a nice place within the city, trying a new restaurant, buying your comfort food, visit the spa, sleep for at least eight hours or spend it with people, who makes you feel better.  It clears your mind, provides a temporary escape and from experience, makes you a better person when you return to work. 

Slow and relaxing mornings - There's no better way to start the day with a full breakfast without the need tor rush for work. 

Monday, February 4, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 349 - First of February

The past month was a mess. :( In the previous years, the first month of the year gave me accomplishments, pleasant surprises and unexpected outpour of freelance works. I'm still fortunate with freelance works. I had a minor accomplishment, a report I've been struggling to finish was finally submitted. But the mess was one for the books. As they say, same old wounds never truly heal. It will bleed at the slightest word. I learned how to become uninspired, damage your self-esteem and pretend that everything is working well. I have been wanting the month to end and so as my personal struggle. I hope February will be better. I hope misery will be replaced by recovery. I'm also looking forward for the quick national holidays this month. If resources were not a hindrance, I would have booked a travel getaway. I would probably end up visiting the mall, try another quaint restaurant in my hometown and if an opportunity comes, drown myself with another freelance work. But from the looks of everything, it feels like money holds the decision. Sad, but this is reality.

Monday, January 28, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 348 - Last for January

It was one of those weeks I wanted to end. I was looking forward to stay home and forget concerns from my everyday environment. I had too much in a week. I was thankful to the two friends who lent their ears. I appreciate my cousins, who unexpectedly treated me for lunch and dinner. It was a great way to temporarily forget some emotional burden. I hope everything will become better next week. But from the looks of everything, all else remain uncertain. 

Whenever something turns out bad, I try my best not to spread the negativity. I voluntarily help someone. I render a good deed to a random person. It may not necessarily address my struggle, but being able to help feels equally rewarding. It also makes me realize, it's not hard to be on the shoes of a good person. It's always better to help, than make other people feel miserable.

So much about my sentiments, here are some photos from last week.

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

9 Home Interior Trends That Will Motivate You To Revamp Your Space This 2019

For most people, a new year means a fresh start. It's no different for homeowners or bonafide interior design fanatics. A redone space or a revamped room is the perfect motivation to begin 2019 with a breath of fresh air. Thankfully 2019 brings in new home interior trends that scream diversity and ooze coziness. Take a peek at which designs would suit your personality best!

Lamudi Honors Local Real Estate’s Best Players and Industry Projects at The Outlook 2018

Manila, Philippines--Lamudi, the Philippines’ leading online real estate platform, recently hosted The Outlook 2018 gala dinner and awards presentation at the Makati Shangri-La last November 15, 2018. In its second year, The Outlook 2018, co-presented by Philippine Daily Inquirer Property, once again recognized the best real estate developers and projects in the past year.

Lamudi Co-Founder and global CEO Kian Moini opened the evening with a major announcement--that Lamudi recently welcomed two new investors, leading global media companies Axel Springer SE and Ringier. According to Moini, “the majority of funding can and will be spent on growth given the company’s comfortable financial situation and a clear path to breakeven.

Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno delivered the evening’s first keynote, highlighting the country’s sound economic fundamentals and sustained investment grade rating.

Monday, January 21, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 347 - Keep Calm and Endure Everything

A few weeks ago, my social media accounts were flooded with video clips of the kid, who bullied several of his classmates. It happened in a known Catholic institution serving the upper class market. The incident was proof that inflicting harm and experiencing oppression chooses no place. Even the finest places and situations can bring devastating to traumatic experiences to anyone.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 346 - Back to default mode

The past week was my first week back at work. After a three-week holiday break, I'm back to my default mode. Morning classes, office work, traffic, repeat for the entire work week. I thought everything was working well, not until I was plagued with a bad case of backache. It started in the middle of the week and up until typing this post, the pain is testing me to the fullest. Bending, sideways movement and most of all, getting up from bed feel so painful. I'm not sure if the cold from the office's aircon, heavy bags or bad posture from prolonged laptop usage caused everything. My body, which has been rested for three weeks, could have been overwhelmed with my first week at work.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Kate Spade, Shop Spring and Shipping Cart (the third time around!) : A Shopping and Shipping Review

While we don't celebrate Thanksgiving in the Philippines, I look forward to this holiday because of the Black Friday Sale. :p Years ago, I only hear Black Friday Sale from friends and relatives residing in US. When I started to learn about online shopping and cargo forwarding services, my life changed. ;) I get to experience a little something from this most awaited sale.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Beautiful Sunday # 345 - First of January

Time flew fast, it has been a great holiday break. We had our last day at work, I toured friends in my hometown, New Year's eve came and the last few days were spent with the family and accomplishing some freelance work. I'm back to work this week and sure enough, I will struggle adjusting with my 7 am classes. If there's anything to love about early morning classes, it's the less crowded trains and cold morning breeze. 

Friday, January 4, 2019

Gui Gui : Another Unlimited Korean Grill

In the previous years, my birthday usually falls on a working day. My default plan was either, take a leave or report for work and treat my friends for dinner. Last month, my birthday landed on a weekend. I didn't have plans. All I felt then, I didn't want to spend another birthday sleeping or cleaning up my room. A few days before that weekend, I decided I wanted to have Samgyeopsal (Korean Grill) with my two cousins. At first, I thought of having a DIY Korean grill. I felt reluctant because it might emerge expensive. My cousin also told me, we didn't have the sauce and side dishes to create an authentic Samgyeopsal experience. In the end, my cousin brought me to a hidden and quiet Korean grill in my hometown.

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Hello 2019!

If it is to be, it is up to me!!!

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