Friday, November 11, 2011

Shoe Shopping

Sharing to you the official rubber shoes of the family, which I bought for our birthdays this year. :)

I thought of giving my daughter Rian her first rubber shoes for her 2nd birthday.  Though the thought and the money came from me, it was my husband Jeff who wanted her new rubber shoes to have straps instead of strings.  He also wanted the shoes to have blinking lights!  It didn't matter to me if he choose the shoes for our daughter.  I actually liked it that way.  We picked a Dora the Explorer shoes for her which fitted her feet and her personality, as well.

I promised my husband to buy him new shoes when my bonus arrives.  And I didn't have to find him a perfect pair because he already had something in his mind--- a boa laced North Face shoes.  It was my very late birthday present for him.  Hehe.

Of course, I should also treat myself.  Shopping for a pair of my own rubber shoes was actually more of a need that time because I would be needing it for our office activity (all my rubber shoes were already so worn out and old already).  I was planning on a cheap rubber shoes, since I am not a sporty type of person.  But my husband said that if I were to buy something that I wanted to last long, I should buy those which are good in quality (which means more expensive too!).  Among us, I was the one who shopped for a long time (it took me days to find a perfect pair of shoe!).  Finally I saw a Sketchers shoe and finally bought it.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Reminiscing the past: Enchanting in the Kingdom

The last time I was in Enchanted Kingdom was in 2007 when my hubby (who was my back-then boyfriend) took me for a date there (you can read my blog about it at Reminiscing the Past: Enchanting Trip).  This year, it was a nice thing for me to once again experience the thrill and excitement of the carnival...and this time, I was with my own family.

The company where my brother works had its family outing last summer at Enchanted Kingdom.  Since he and his family couldn't make it because his daughter had a ballet recital on the day of the outing, he decided to give his complimentary tickets to my parents and brothers.  Of course, my parents wanted to take my daughter Rian with them so we let her join the pack, with my hubby Jeff and me tagging along.  It's good that  my daughter was free to enter because she was 1 year old back then, so I just bought 2 tickets for Jeff and me.

The trip had been a very tiring one for me and Jeff because of the heat, crowd, and super  likot Rian.  Jeff really looked like he was not having fun, and hey, neither do I!  But despite of it, I just thought that we were there not actually to enjoy, but to accompany Rian. I felt satisfied and happy just to see her surprise on her face when she saw the Space Shuttle ride go somersault and when we rode the rides in the Boulderville.  And hey, it was also my parents' first time to enter the carnival so I was also happy for them and I wanted them to enjoy.

My husband and I got to also ride Space Shuttle, Rialto, and Flying Fiesta.  We also got to play in the game booths.  I won a crab stuff toy at a booth where I got to shoot a ball into a milk can!  Hmm...did I say I didn't enjoy the trip?  I take that back.  I did!  

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Reminiscing the Past: Puerto Princesa Tour - Day 3

Have you already read my previous blogs on my Puerto Princesa Tour with my hubby (Day 1 and Day 2)?  If not, I hope you can have time to read them and I'm sure you'll be amazed with all the tourists spots we had visited, such as the Crocodile Farm, Iwahig Prison, Bakers Hill, Sabang Beach and the Wonder of Nature finalist, Underground River.

Now I will blog about the Day 3 of our 5-day tour in Puerto Princesa City, Palawan, Philippines.  The 3rd day of the tour is composed of an island hoping and snorkling activities at Honda Bay (or Hunda Bay).  The tour van stopped by the hotel to fetch us at around 7:00 am.  We also fetched a group of kind and cool middle aged women.  We traveled for a few minutes until we reached the bay wherein we have to register our names and take a boat ride to our destinations.  While waiting for our boat, my husband rented an underwater casing with digicam so that we could take pictures under the sea. 

Our first stop was the Pambato Reef.  With our rented snorkling gears and with manong boatman as a guide, he pointed to us different kinds of corals under water.  I was very impressed by the boatman's memory because he knew all the names of the corals in there!

At Pambato Reef, after the coral tour

We also island hopped at nearby beaches such as Snake Island and Pandan Island Resort.  Our lunch at Snake Island was great because our tour guide served us a delicious meal--- shrimp, eggplant with bagoong, pork, fruits, etc.  Supper yummy!  Aside from the big lunch, we also get to snorkle underwater.

A nice shot of Nemo underwater--- by my hubby Jeff

Look what we had written on the sands of Pandan Island Resort!

After the tiring yet educational and exciting island hopping experience, we got in the hotel and rested for a while.  Then my husband and I went to Badjao Seafront Restaurant for dinner.  We ordered crab--- the cause of my after tour allergy!!!!  I knew that I was allergic to crabs...but I couldn't help was so delicious!

The crab that caused my after tour allergy!

So that's it, my blogger friends-- the Day 3 of our Palawan trip.  I super apologize if it took my months to finish this blog.  I was so busy with my work.  I am glad that I finally found time to blog again.

Next time, I'll share with you our Day 4 and 5 trip in Palawan. :)

Friday, May 27, 2011

My Helpful Toddler

Despite of my one year old (going two) daughter being in the stage of wanting to be the center of the universe, it made me proud to see the values I am inculcating in her--- selflessness and helpful attitude especially towards other kids.


My family and I went to Nueva Ecija early this year to visit our grandparents and relatives there. We were with my parents, aunt and her adopted three year old girl. On the way there, we stopped at a gas station along North Expressway to eat lunch. It was a cheap but yummy lunch because my mother prepared it for us as our baon--- rice, adobo, barbeque and softdrinks---so that we wouldn’t have to buy food along the way. We all ate at the parking lot of the gas station which was just beside the low wall which separates the place and the grassy area over it. As we took our lunch, a little girl in rugged clothes appeared infront of us, begging for food. My cousin (the adopted kid of my aunt) cried aloud upon seeing the strange girl. My aunt asked her why was she crying and she replied, “Ang panget kasi nung bata e!”. She also pleaded to shoo off the rugged girl. I chuckled under my breath. Kids.

Rian (my daughter) was watching my cousin all the time. Afraid that she might absorb her attitude, I took action. I grabbed a barbeque and handled it to her, and then I encouraged her to give it to the poor rugged girl. "Look Rian oh, wawa yung bata hindi pa kumakain. Give mo siya ng food.” My little Rian just stared at the girl who was also looking at her, pleading for food. I slightly pushed my daughter towards the girl, but she won’t move. Knowing that I shouldn’t push her too much if she doesn’t like to, I took the barbeque on her hand and handled it to the girl. “Look Rian oh, Mommy is sharing food sa bata.” The rugged girl took hold of the barbeque, said salamat po, sat beside the low wall and started to eat. My father also gave her some adobo and rice. Rian saw the whole thing. Later when she was drinking water in a plastic cup, she suddenly saw the rugged girl again, and to my surprise, she gave her water to the poor girl…without me telling her to share! So proud of her action, I kissed my daughter and told her that she was indeed a very good girl.


My family and I went in the park in Laguna one afternoon, so that our little Rian can play ball there and so that she can meet other kids there. Rian was very active, playing throwing and kicking the ball all over the place.  Later, two kids about her age walked closer to her.  The three of them was staring at each other.  My little toddler girl smiled and slowly stretched out her arm, with her ball on her hand towards the toddler boy infront of her.  Awed by the situation, I forgot to take a shot of them with my digicam.  The little boy didn't make a move, however, probably because he wasn't aware that my daughter was actually inviting him to play with her ball.  Rian didn't stop offering the ball, hoping that they could play with her...until another toddler girl came running towards her (Rian was shocked that there's a kid running towards her, she suddenly ran towards me and hid her face between my legs while the other girl hugged her. I laughed with pleasure because of the cuteness of the situation.  Toddlers!).


Arcades have this mini car wherein you have to insert a coin to let in run (or cradle, that is!).  I placed Rian on one of those with two seats which has also two stirring wheels.  Since there were two seats, a toddler girl started to climb on the car to take the other seat.  Her mom helped her climb on it.  I observed that my little girl offered the seat to her because she patted the vacant seat, just like saying, dito ka umupo.  She also stretched her arms towards the other girl, offering her hand so that she can climb on the car easily.  The other girl probably wasn't aware that Rian was trying to help her, but anyway, my daughter didn't mind.  She looked at the girl with enjoyment as they rode the cradling toy car.  My daughter Rian was very happy indeed to have find a playmate that time.


As a mother, I am very happy to see my daughter growing up to be a kind person.  Hopefully, those values that we instill to her which she already practice during her early development ages will make her someday be a mature person, with a big heart to share to the world! :)


Saturday, March 19, 2011

Wishing for a perdurable day

These past few days weren't so much favorable for me.  Having sore eyes for two weeks means absence from work and being away from family (so that they wouldn't be able to catch sore eyes from me).  It was hard and painful (physically and emotionally).  First, I left a big project in the office which needed coordination and preparation, and I don't think that  would finish it on time, since the doctor is not yet giving me a medical clearance.  This would mean that I would surely convince my superior to move the project next month.  And there are other tasks that I should be doing during my two week absence.  Gosh, I feel like I'll gonna get low grade in my performance appraisal--- and it was not even my fault!

Aside from career, I also got no time for my family.  Because of my sickness, I had to stay away from my husband and daughter for a while until I get better.  Therefore I packed up my bag and lived with my parents in the province for two weeks.  Though my husband sometimes visit me, I didn't get to see my daughter for two weeks and I miss her so much.  I guess, she misses me too.

And because of my sickness, there'sno fun for me.  I couldn't get out of the house, not just because sore eyes is infectious, but also because the sunlight hurt my much!

Therefore, I am alone in this room, checking out Facebook and looking for something exciting in the net, like looking for an online job. Hehe.

Now I'm wishing for a normal day for me--- a perdurable a day, helps you sleep, work and play.

Good day everyone!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Reminiscing the Past: Puerto Princesa Tour - Day 2

Last time I blogged about Day 1 of my Puerto Princesa tour with my husband.  Day 1 of the tour included the half-day City Tour, which is at the South part of the city.  Now I will share the Day 2 of the tour, which will include the enchanting trip to Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park (Underground River), which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

DAY 2 (February 16, 2011)

The famous Underground River is located in the St. Paul mountain range at the North part of the city and is about an hour away from the city proper.  It is actually a river flowing inside a cave full of limestones.  I am not so much of a nature lover but visiting a UNESCO World Heritage Site is really an honor, pride and joy for me.

The tour guide on Day 1 told us that the tour van would fetch us around 7:30 am.  So my husband and I decided to have our free breakfast in the hotel at 6:30 am (my hubby had beef tapa and I ordered tocino).  To our surprise, the tour van arrived at 6:30 am! Therefore we hurried our breakfast.  We had a new tour guide, Kuya Ian, and he seemed to be in a hurry because he wanted us to be early in the Underground River tour so that we won't be with the crowded tourists.  We also had new tour-mates in the van--- a young couple, an old couple, and a family (with a foreigner and kids).  We were jampacked inside the van!

The road trip was a silent one.  It was like going to Baguio because all you can see are mountain ranges along the way.  We also passed by a community wherein their their main source of power and electricity comes from solar cells.  My husband became interested about the solar cells, which are on the lamp posts beside the main road because he works at a solar cells manufacturing company. 

Solar cells on posts

When we reached the bay wherein we would take a boat ride to Mt. St. Paul, Kuya Ian collected our ID's for registration.  While waiting for him to register us, we took time to take shots of the scenery.

I love the waves! :)

The group were divided into half to ride in two motorboats.  The first batch included the old couple and the family.  The second batch included the young couple and us (my husband and I).  After minutes of boat ride, we finally came to the other side of the shore.

Almost there....

From the shore, we had to register our names and walk on a monkey trail towards the river where the cave is located.  There were not too many people when we got there yet.  We wore our life jacket and headgear for safety.  My husband and I were requested by the tour guide (which is not Kuya Ian, but a tour guide specifically for the Underground River) to seat infront of the boat.  He also requested my husband to hold the flashlight.  Then when everyone's ready, the boat began to paddle its way towards the darkness of the cave....


going inside...

The cave was so dark and quiet, only our tour guide was talking, since he gave information about the place.  He also shared the different rock formations inside, in which, when we use our imagination, formed into things such as vegetables, faces, buildings, animals, and many more.  My favorite rock formation was the catherdral.  When our tour guide intorduced the cathedral and other rock formations around it that looked like holy things (there's  a rock formation that looked like the Blessed Mary, angels, etc.), I was so amazed and awed.  I couldn't help but to think that this subterranean must be sacred, and the Heavens take care of it.

The Cathedral

Aside from rocks, we also saw bats on the ceiling.  The journey must be very scary for other people but let me assure you that fears would fade away once you see the interesting scenery inside.

When we paddled out of the cave, we saw lots of tourists outside, waiting for their turn to ride.  Thank goodness we entered th cave before them!

We had lots of picture taking before going back to the bay where Kuya Ian first registered us.  Then we went to Sabang Beach to take our yummy free lunch.  After that, we finally went home.

At the beautiful Sabang Beach

My husband and I freshen up (I took a looooong hot bath! I loooove it!) and at 7:00pm we dined at Ka Lui Restaurant.  Dining at Ka Lui requires reservation and we the hotel already arranged our reservation that morning before our tour.  What is nice about this restaurant is that customers have to take off their shoes when entering and while dining.  My husband and I got the table for two wherein we had to seat on the floor (reminds me of Japanese culture!).  The dinner choices were few, actually, but we ordered a complete set meal (which was hmm...quite expensive, hehe, but sulit and delicious). 

Day 2 dinner at Ka Lui
The tour was more than just fun.  It was enlightening.  It made me a person closer to nature.  It made me realize that there are still wonders in this world that are still virgin from man's greedy and worldly acts...and we need to value such wonders so that our children would still see the beauty of our Mother Nature.

Upnext...Day 3 of our Puerto Princesa adventure.


Thursday, February 24, 2011

Reminiscing the Past: Puerto Princesa Tour - Day 1

Wow, it's been months since I last blogged.  This means that I had been a busy career woman for the past few months.  However, since I am on my mandatory leave for two weeks, I guess it's time to catch up on my writing.  And the first thing I want to blog for this year is all about my Palawan tour with my husband.  My husband Jeff and I planned our Palawan tour late last year to celebrate our 2nd wedding anniversary and Valentines day for this year.  Our "honeymoon" planning was very timely because we got the chance to get seats from the 50% off promo of Cebu Pacific and got a good travel and tours agency in Palawan which was referred by Jeff's friends (Hadefe Travel and Tours).

Puerto Princesa City is the Philippine's largest city with lots of magestic nature spots from land to water.  My hubby and I picked this city for our 2011 tour because we love its sense of adveture and nature awe.  Hey, it's a pleasure to visit a place with world wonder destinations.  The city is also known to be the City in the Forest because you won't see big buildings in the area, but it is surrounded by big mountains and rainforests.  Since we stayed for 5 days and visited lots of tourist sites, I plan on blogging about our tour per day so that I may be able to fully describe and share our Palawan experience.

DAY 1 (February 15, 2011)

We arrived at Puerto Princesa Airport at around lunchtime.  The hotel service fetched us and brought us to the hotel, Ysabelle Mansion, which was just 5 minutes away from the airport.  The hotel was very cozy and quiet, perfect for a peaceful stay away from the hussle city of Manila.  It has free wifi (but the strength was not very high), free breakfast, and free airport transfer.  But then, it doesn't have swimming pool or jacuzzi.  What I liked most about the hotel is its long list of breakfast choices.  All through my life of traveling in the Philippines, this hotel has the longest list of choices for breakfast (other hotels only have 2 to 3 choices).  Choices include chicken / pork longganisa, tocino, beef tapa, corned beef, dried fish, sardines, etc.  For other information about the hotel, you can visit its website to know its room rates and packages.

Since we arrived at Puerto Princesa during lunchtime, our contact from the travel and tours agency, Sir Hanny, fetched us from the hotel and suggested us to take lunch at Balinsasayaw Restaurant.  Balinsasayaw means "bird's nest".  Obviously, it's the restaurant's delicacy.  However, we didn't order it because that time, we craved for rice and meat (we were super hungry!).  After the lunch, our tour guide, Ms. Joms, fetched us at the restaurant.  In the tour van, we were with several oldies who were mostly balikbayans (and a foreigner).

At Balinsasayaw Restaurant

It was the start of the City Tour.

Ms. Joms, our tour guide, was very accommodating.  She introduced herself and let us introduced ourselves to one another.  She was very talkative all throughout the tour, which was fine with me because there was not a dull moment especially while we were on the road.

Our first stop was at the Crocodile Farm.  It is a breeding house of crocodiles and mini zoo at Palawan Wildlife Rescue and Conservation Center about 30 minutes away from the city center.  Aside from live crocodiles, big and small, we also saw the remains (the bones and skin) of one of the largest crocodile caught in the wild which attacked fishermen in the area.  What I liked most in this destination was the picture taking while holding a live baby crocodile, for only 30.00 Php per shot.  Holding my breath, I got to hold the live crocodile while posing infront of the camera (and guess what, the croc placed its feet on my arm and tummy!  It's kinda scary but sweet...but still, ahhh...exciting?  Hehe).


Brave me and my hubby...and the croc... :D

Our next stop was at the Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm.  This is the prison without cells, wherein inmates live like in a farming community rather than in jail.  Inmates here could earn a living through farming, handicraft, or being a househelp for employees who live there.  They could also build their own nipa hut! On our way there, we saw a group of inmates doing some farming, with only just 2 security watchmen to look after them.  Prisoners here came from other correctional institutions all over the country, and were brought here probably because of their good conduct while in prison, or even old age.  We asked the tour guide if there were prison breaking incidents.  There were, but they could be easily caught because Puerto Princesa is a city in an island, and the population is not very large, so it's easy to locate those who tried to run away.  But most of the inmates rather stay in the cell-less prison, living like an almost normal life, rather than break the rules and be back behind bars again.  Anyway, we stopped by the souvenir shop wherein my husband and I bought keychains to give to our siblings.

The inmates willingly took this photo for free!

After the Iwahig Prison, we visited Mitra's Ranch, which felt like you're in Tagaytay, because it is situated on top of the mountain, overviewing the sea.  It was not as cold as Tagaytay but it was very windy.  The place is actually owned by Mitra's. 

A lovely spot for a quiet just-want-to-be-with-you date on top of the mountain.

Next, as we went down the mountain, we stopped by Baker's Hill and bought some of their yummy delicacy, hopia, for pasalubong.

Photo galore at Baker's Hill

We also went to Binuatan Creations.  It is a handicraft weaving place, where its products are export quality.  Guess what, I tried some actual weaving to experience it...and I found out that one needs to have good hands and feet coordination because it was like biking or walking on a treadmill.  I bought some good stuff there also...handwoven bags.  Quite a price, but even my husband couldn't stop me! Hehe.  I also bought a bag for my mother, and placemat for my mother in law (Jeff's choice, of course).

I'm weavin'!

Our last stop was at a tiangge souvenir shop in the city proper. The shop sells Palawan t-shirts, keychains, pearls (pearls here are so cheap, as well as the well known South Sea pearls), cashew nuts (also a delicacy of Palawan), bags, and many more.  I got to buy pearl earrings because earrings are my favorite everyday accessory.  After the shopping, we passed by the Immaculate Concepcion Cathedral and Baywalk (they call it Baybay).  We didn't get the chance to stop to those places because our companions in the van are already tired.

My husband and I dropped off the hotel to freshen up, since the City Tour was very tiring (and hey, the temperature was so hot!).  Around 7:00 pm, we had our dinner at Kinabuchs Restaurant, wherein their specialty is crocodile meat.  We didn't order crocodile meat because we were afraid that our stomach might get upset during the first day of our tour.  Therefore we just indulged into sisig and kangkong.  After dinner, we walked towards Tiki Restobar (which was just a minute or two away from Kinabuchs Restaurant), and ordered a pitcher of cherry margarita there.  I felt so lucky that night because I learned that it was a reggae night.  I love reggae!

Night life is not too popular in Puerto Princesa, but we're glad to found Tiki Restobar to grab some drinks.  Margarita + reggae + hunny with me = happiness!

And the night went on...and I guess, I don't have to talk about it on my blog, do I? *wink*

So that made the DAY 1 of our Puerto Princesa tour.  How would I describe it?  Tiring, informative, and expensive! (Hey, it was just the first day and we already did a lot of shopping!).  Next time I'll blog about the DAY 2 ---  the Underground River tour adventure.

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