Tinipak River Family Adventure

Tinipak River in Tanay, Rizal is a good trek for beginners and even kids 7 and up.  The trek is just 3 hours two-way and the trail is gorgeous with the forest on one side and clean running river with beautiful boulders on the other. There is also the  constant view of the mountains everywhere.  The final destination are limestone rock formations that are simply stunning.

It is the first trek of my 3 kids (youngest is 10 year old).  The 10 year old was able to manage quite well. Since it is their first, I wanted it to be really good. That said, the trail mix of Tinipak of walking on grass, soil, rocks, mud and boulders provided an interesting and fairly challenging experience. Not too easy and not too hard. Not too long trek either.  You would get a repeat request for trekking if you start with Tinipak. I did! [Read more...]

The Old Grove Farmstead: Day Trip to Holland in Batangas

A quick day trip is our family's way of chillaxing without the pressure of too much preparation.

The Old Grove Farmstead with its iconic red barn and Dutch windmill transported us to Holland in just 1.5 hours! Located just right near the exit of Lipa, Batangas, the farm offered the family a delightful experience.

The real treat for my kids is the feeding encounter with the sheep. They had so much fun hand feeding them as the sheep ate right out of their bare hands. The sheep are enclosed in a fence but they can stick their head out for the feeding encounter. Note: Sheep and duck feeds are sold at the windmill which serves as the entrance to the farm. We found that the ducks liked the sheep food as well so you can skip getting duck food.

[Read more...]

Taipei Zoo Family Guide

My kids and I fell in love with Taipei Zoo the first time we went there.   The place is huge!  165 hectares with 90 hectares open to the public, it is the biggest zoo in Asia.  The landscape is rich in foliage, so if you are not looking at the glorious animals you are looking at rich vegetation.

The animal enclosures don't seem like an enclosure at all because it is big and designed to re-create the animal's habitat.  That said the animals look healthy and well-taken cared.  They have everything!  From pandas, to African elephants, dessert camels, koalas, a gigantic aviary of birds, huge reptile collection, even penguins!  In the 6 times that I have been there, all weekdays, the place wasn't packed. [Read more...]

Water Tipid Tips: Talk Points with Kasambahay

Magkano tubig ninyo?”  A question that crops up once in awhile in my mommy chikas.  Ours is between P 1,500 to P2,000 per month because we have a fish pond.  Kaya naman I am diligent in reminding our kasambahays to be mindful of their water consumption.  I appeal to a higher cause aside from my ever-growing budget and instead tell them “’Wag tayong magsayang ng tubig, nauubos siya.” With that may effect din sa kanila and not just on my budget.

And since we are on budget, Maynilad is adjusting their water tariff rates soon. Relax! Puso ninyo! The increase is necessary para patuloy ang improvements sa water and wastewater services. It’s good to know that the water rate follows a subsidized structure so that those who consume less water are charged lower rates. We consume 54 cubic meters per month, and we are only charged residential rates.  In effect, high consumers (like Commercial establishments) pay for my consumption. So the increase for households will be very minimal.

Water rates are adjusted pala every five years in a process called Rate Rebasing. It is meant to make gradual rate adjustments to cover the advance investments of Maynilad to improve their services.  When it comes to water service, Maynilad does not only bring water to our homes, but they also make sure that the quality of the water that they provide meets the Philippine National Standards for Drinking Water. Then, they still don’t stop there as they treat the wastewater before discharging it back to the bodies of water.

Thus, the tariff increase will go to projects to further enhance water and wastewater services, which will ultimately benefit us, the consumers. [Read more...]

Decathlon PH: Most Massive and Complete Sports Store in Manila

I was in Alabang for my son's football tournament and I decided to pass by Decathlon in Festival Mall because I needed football socks and a co-parent recommended Decathlon.  I was expecting a store like Toby's or Sports Warehouse and I was in for a surprise,  the store is gargantuan!!!  As in para syang S&R, H&M or Ikea ng mga sports equipment!  Feel nyo ba excitement ko? Outside pa lang my heart was palpitating already!  Just to put it aside, this is not a sponsored post.  Natuwa lang talaga ako sa aking discovery!

Decathlon is a 42-year old French Company and is one of the biggest sports retailers in the world!  They opened their first store last June 2017 and they plan to open more than 30 stores in the Philippines in the next 10 years. They have over 1,300 stores in 28 countries.

The store carries about 74 sports!!!!  Sorry excited much! [Read more...]

Guide to a Day Trip at Yilan with Kids (Part 2)

Just 1.5-2 hours away Taipei City,  Yilan has a lot to offer.  We were able to go to 7 places in one day but there are still a lot of places to discover.  For the meantime,  here are the places we were able to visit in a day and that includes travel time from Taipei already! Click here for part 1.

4.   Agrioz Museum Cafe

I accidentally deleted my other photos and was left with this.  Check out Agrioz Candied Fruit Museum and you will see photos from the web.  The cafe has very nice interior with fun additions like this giant table and chair.  If you are a group of 15,  you can schedule a candied fruit making experience.

5.   CP Cheese Factory

Not exactly a factory but they do have delightful interiors and their Japanese cheesecakes are very good.  A cheesecake ranges from [Read more...]

Psychpros Manila Review

I don’t want to write bad reviews but I feel this can help save and correct lives.

A friend of mine has a child battling an eating disorder. When she asked around, a friend of hers said she got pretty good results with Psychpros in Greenhills. Eager to address the eating disorder before it gets worst, she brought her child there.

Child and mom, was interviewed by Dra. Ho, and was then recommended for the child to undergo a series of written and interview tests to determine the psychological state of the child. Results of which will be provided in full upon completion of tests. [Read more...]

How to make your Husband get you Flowers

It has been 15 years since I last received flowers from my husband so I was overjoyed when he gave me flowers last Mother’s Day. Yep, after all these years! I finally got one.

Actually, there was a time when he would give me flowers on special occasions, from courtship all the way to our 2nd year of marriage. I guess it stopped when I inadvertently blurted out after receiving a beautiful bouquet of tulips “Nyak! Flowers sayang sa pera! Sana kinain na lang natin yan!” (Flowers what a waste of money! We should have just eaten with that money)

And he did just that, he stopped giving me flowers and instead taken me out on special occasions. And the very practical mom in me liked that, for awhile. Somehow though, in between those 15 years, I suddenly had a longing to be given flowers.

And so I waited for 15 years to be given flowers, [Read more...]

Guide to a Day Trip at Yilan with Kids (Part 1)

Just 1.5-2 hours away Taipei City,  Yilan has a lot to offer.  We were able to go to 7 places in one day but there are still a lot of places to discover.  For the meantime,  here are the places we were able to visit in a day and that includes travel time from Taipei already!

  1. Mr. Brown Castle Cafe

Not your ordinary coffee shop, Mr. Brown fashioned this cafe to an English castle.  I ordered a coffee latte and passion lime cake which was pretty good.  My kids had their fill of gelato.

Best place to sit [Read more...]

DIY Star Wars Party

We recently celebrated the 7th birthday party of our young padawan with a DIY Star Wars Party in Chili's Greenhills.

For any DIY project, I always turn to Pinterest for inspiration.  Sharing with you my DIY Star Wars labor of love for my youngling.  Post includes supplier info in Manila. [Read more...]

Top Trails for Families at Taroko National Park, Taiwan

Since my husband is currently based in Taipei,  my kids and I have gone to Taiwan several times in the past few years.  We always enjoyed our day trips and our food binges.  This time my husband took us East of Taiwan and I must say, as an outdoors person, Taroko National Park in Hualien,  is one of my favourites.If you will be in Taiwan for longer than 3 days or if you have previously gone around Taipei city already or if you prefer nature to city, Hualien, home of Taroko National Park, is worth the trip.  It is a 2-3 hour train ride from Taipei city thus an overnight stay is highly recommended.  Read about How to Get to and How to Go Around Taroko National Park here.

Top Spots at Taroko National Park for Families: [Read more...]

DeLonghi Experience: A Gift Guide for the Special People in your List

It is seldom that we get to experience a product before a purchase, especially for kitchen appliances and coffee machines. We just buy it based on ads or the reviews we have read. De’Longhi Concept Specialist changed the retail experience of affordable luxury appliances when they opened the De’Longhi Concept Store at Ayala Vertis North Mall last November 23, 2017.

The store is very cozy. You can sit back, relax and savor some coffee while deciding which machine speaks to your heart best.

The grand opening had A-list celebrities coming in all through out the day. Most of them wanting to have a peek of what the DeLonghi Concept store has. Daphne Osena, who is one of my fashion and home style icons are there along with other celebrities from Angel Aquino, Jackie Go, Lynn Ching, Tin Dychiao, Team Matsunaga among others. If you want to know the other celebrities who are onto DeLonghi visit the official instragram account of @delonghiph [Read more...]

Organizing our Kitchen Pantry

The pantry is an essential part of my kitchen.  In fact everything starts from what my pantry holds.  If I want to make chicken curry, my pantry should have coconut milk.  If I want to make pasta,  my pantry should have linguini and tomato sauce.

That is why I have to make sure to stock my pantry well and keep everything orderly.   Last week, Mothers who Brunch together with Lock and Lock held a wonderful lunch for us moms.   We had a super duper fun cooking competition and were given tips on how to organize our pantries.  Like store by category, not by size and have kid zone where kids can easily access their snacks.

Lock and Lock has always been in my pantry.  My primary reason for having it is that it is air tight.  Alam nyo naman in the Pili-Pines, no matter how well you clean up, ants find their way and I don't like wasting food because ants crawled into them.  Second, is that it comes in sizes that are very functional.  Third,  is that it is a clear container so I can see what is inside.  See how Lock and Lock is very much integrated into my own pantry.

Everything in it's place.  A place for everything!  Everything is much organized if we put them in Lock and Lock containers.  I even have labels for my containers so new maids won't mix them up and I end up wasting precious time looking for ingredients.   [Read more...]

Coron: Where to Stay , What to Do and What to Skip

Coron with all its breathtaking pics all over social media has been on my travel list for quite awhile now.  And Coron Island is truly a beauty worth visiting with its jade colored waters set against towering limestone formations.   Coron Town, however, where most tourists stay is where expectations have to be managed. But more on that later.  For now let me rave about the beauty of Coron Island.   [Read more...]

Diastasis Recti and our PostPartum Mega Belly: Exercise Do’s and Don’ts

“Wow! I didn’t know you’re pregnant,” a friend excitedly beamed. Well, I’m not. This has been a constant source of embarrassment for me and a good number of people, from well meaning friends and acquaintances to massage attendants and theme park staff.

You see I am small-medium sized in all parts of my body except for my tummy which is ginormously big. It started after I gave birth to my first child and went down hill from there, increasing in size with every child. I have been trying to lose it for the longest time. I have been diligently going to the gym for 15 years now, doing cardio work, muscle strength and doing hundreds of crunches and planks, and yet the pouch remains bigger than ever!

I finally decided to wave the white flag and visited a cosmetic surgeon to help me. He said I have a condition called “diastasis recti.”

What is Diastasis Recti? [Read more...]