Saturday, May 31, 2014

ignorance IS bliss

I never learn and because I don't, I still get hurt. It's not as hurtful as before but there is still that slight tinge of pain that I can feel at the corner of my heart. A light tug that is not big enough to cause tears but a soft pull that makes one feel a little bit sad.

I learned of things that I had no business learning ... I asked questions whose answers I never should have bothered with and now, I need to step back once more and start from ground zero. I always start at ground zero.

However, this time, I am finally armed with complete knowledge so that should the same incident happen once more, I wouldn't make the same mistake.

Ignorance IS bliss. Let's keep it that way.

151/365 photoblog: Hot Stars

Family meal at Hot Stars.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Smile Elephant

I have seen this place a couple of months back and have always wanted to give it a go but never got the chance to do so. Finally I did and I was happy that I gave it a go.

Smile Elephant is a hole in the wall kind of place. In fact, if you did not know exactly that its a Thai restaurant, you might actually mistake it for one of those hellholes that pretend to be an eatery. Thankfully, I was mistaken with this one.

I ordered the Thai Iced Tea and the Pandan Iced Tea just to make a comparison with Just Thai's version and I'm really happy to say that our version is much more authentic. Of course, Smile Elephant also has their own distinct flavor but I personally disliked the Pandan Iced Tea. I felt it was a bit off.

I ordered the Bangkok Rice which they said is their own version of a seafood rice and I was pleasantly surprised with how it tasted. This rice is good enough for 2-3 people and can stand alone on its own. You actually don't need to order anything else for it has scallops and egg already in it along with bits and pieces of shrimp.

I also ordered the Asparagus with Shrimp and this one was another winner. The asparagus was cooked just right and not soggy while the shrimps were obviously fresh.

The only other thing that I did not like aside from the Pandan Iced Tea was the sticky rice with mango. This was dismal.

Overall, I was happy with Smile Elephant. Thank you to my friend who treated me to this place. You never fail to support me in my blogging reviews. :)

Thursday, May 29, 2014

149/365 photoblog: Mystic Brew Cafe Bloggers Night

Twas another successful bloggers night. Thank you lord for the guidance. I hope that both client and bloggers will go home with a smile on their faces. :)

forever or not ....

I don’t think there is someone out there for me. There. I said it. It’s real. I actually said it out loud or rather, wrote about it.

I’ve fallen in love so many times and had my heart broken more times than I care to count. Every single boy, guy, man that I fell in love with has managed to break my heart. Every single one of them, I actually saw a future together. I thought it was forever but save for a few who did want forever with me, forever for the others was 4 years, 1 year and 8 months, and for the last one, forever was 1 year and 1 month of officially being together and then 1 year of toying with me.

What a forever huh?

I’ve been single for over a year and though I am not on the lookout for a new relationship, I just feel that there really is no one out there for me. I feel like I’m meant to be on my own. Perhaps I’m right and perhaps, I’m wrong. However, I have some valid point to back me up on this.

First of all, there seems to be a shortage of decent, legally single men who fall in my age range. Yes, I meet a lot of men with the many events that I go to on a weekly basis but most of them are married or with someone else. I don’t need that. I need someone legally available to be with me and I need someone whom I can present to family and friends and not feel ashamed. 

Second, I need someone who will understand that he will never be my first priority. I think this is the one that kills things immediately. You see, most guys can’t accept that but in my case, they need to. I have a son and a career that I need to focus on more than I can focus on my relationship. I need someone who is equally passionate about his life as he is passionate about us. 

I was with someone who wouldn’t even meet with his friends without me and though it was his choice, in the end, he took it against me that I had a life of my own while his life was me. I didn’t deserve that and I don’t need someone like that. 

Third, I need someone who is financially more stable than I am. I don’t need his money but I need him to not be a burden to me. If he is financially stable, it will show me that he has discipline and foresight. I’m tired of being the one to always fix things and come up with solutions. I need someone who can help me carry the burden and not add to the burden that is already on my shoulders.

Lastly, I need someone who won’t give up. I think this is pretty hard to find nowadays because people in this day and age just take the easy way out. They think that when things are broken, it needs to be thrown away. Unfortunately, I’m one of those who believe that when things are broken, it can still be fixed. 

So there. I don’t think there is someone out there for me. There. I said it. It’s real. I actually said it out loud or rather, wrote about it.

Carmona Estates

When I was young, my ideal dream house was the one that I would always see in Camella. I thought that the 2 storey yellow house was absolute perfection. I imagined my husband and 2 kids there with me and we’d live happily ever after.

Of course as with all dreams, this one died along with the failure of my relationship with B’s dad. I knew then that my vision of the Yellow Camella house was gone for good. Thankfully, Carmona Estate seems determined to change my mind and I once again have hopes of actually owning a little 2 storey house that won’t leave me in debt till my last breath. 

Situated in Carmona, Cavite, Carmona Estates boasts of the tagline “We’re Home!” and yes, I can definitely agree that indeed we are home. Carmona Estates is flood free, has an easy access to traffic and covers all the needs of a single Mom like myself. 24 hour security will give me complete peace of mind and a clubhouse as well as swimming pool will surely keep B busy when we finally get a place of our own in this area. What’s great about it too is that its still in the South and I have long fallen in love with the South. 

I simply have fallen in love with the South. Thank you Carmona Estates for giving me hope that my 2 storey little house may just come true once more, this time, with just B and I and that’s more than good enough for me.

It Takes Gutz to be a Guttierez

I grew up watching Rufffa Gutierrez and wondering what it must be like to live her life. I had twin brothers of my own and so in a way, I felt that I could relate to her because she alo had younger twin brothers as well as a Mom who was very protective and could get loud when need be. Of course I’m no Ruffa but the similarities in our life were pretty distinct. One could say she was the Princess to my Pauper.  

Imagine my excitement when I finally had the chance to meet and mingle with her even for a bit. I felt like I finally had a glimpse of what my life would have been if the tables have been turned. What makes it even more exciting is that because of their reality show It Takes Gutz to be a Gutierrez, I will not only catch a glimpse of their life; I will actually get to watch it on TV. 

Last Monday, the media were given a treat by being shown a sneak peek at the pilot episode of It Takes Gutz to be a Gutierrez and I can definitely say that though initially, everyone thought it was going to be because of Annabelle Rama that things would be exciting, we all through wrong.
It’s really the dynamics of the entire family that would make everything even more exciting. Richard’s being secretive, Raymond’s flamboyance, the Yin and Yang between Annabelle and Eddie and of course, the glamour and extravagance that is Ruffa will definitely make this show a shit. 

It takes GUTZ to be a Gutierrez premieres June 1, Sunday at 9 pm on E! (Sky Cable Channel 57 and Cablelink Channel 33).

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Minerva's Cajun Shack

It was meant to be. Fate must have known that I have a soft spot for New Orleans and since I am not yet able to go to New Orleans, He let me have a taste of what New Orleans has to offer by introducing Minerva’s Cajun Shack to me. Thank God for a branch in the 6th level of Shangri-la Mall.

Surrounded with masks, beads, feathers, and turntables, I felt like I was transported to New Orleans and all it needed was the people shouting and screaming with glee to make me believe that I really was in New Orleans and experiencing Mardi Gras. 

Adding to the authenticity of things was the Mega Shake and the Megarita. Huge is an understatement. This drink intimidated me so much that I actually had 2 sips and then pushed it back to let someone else have it. I realized that I was not ready to drink this big one all on my own. I was pretty happy with my iced tea for now. 

Thankfully, the blackened salmon salad was not the least bit intimidating. In fact, it was the exact opposite because it was welcoming and so good that I wanted to finish the entire thing all to myself. The salmon was cooked just right that the taste would burst inside your mouth. 

The pasta that was served was another handsdown winner. The pasta was al dente, the combination of spices right, and the overall flavor was muy delicioso. Even my picky chef of a brother loved it and gave it the thumbs up sign.

I also fell in love with the Rockefeller Oyster and the Spinach Ravioli. They were both fantastic and really, really tasty. 

And of course, for "meatatarians" as my brother fondly calls himself, the backribs is a hands down winner. Meat was soft and oozing with the taste of the barbecue sauce and the ribs ... 14 slices all ready to be devoured. Yummy!

Thank you so much for having us over. It was definitely a night of degustation. BURP!

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* I was invited to review the food. I did not pay for my meal. However, the free meal did not in any way sway my opinion and everything you read here is MY PERSONAL OPINION. 

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Red Crab Alimango House

Red Crab Alimango House hosted a food tasting event and we were lucky to have been invited as one of their guests. First thing I noticed was the interiors. I loved that the feel of the place was very native and they had potteries in the form of crabs. I felt that it was very personalized.

The Seafood Salpicao (Php269) alone was more than enough to fill one’s tummy. It contained mussels, squid, fish, and shrimp. It may look small but it’s actually very heavy on the tummy. Mind you, this is just the first dish.  The tangy tomato sauce complemented everything on the dish.

Second thing that was served was the Crispy Baby Squid served with Dilis (Php175.) Now this was hands down a winner for all of us. The squid was crunchy and tasty. The dilis was crunchy. It was exactly what it should be. This one actually disappeared into our tummies in less than 5 minutes. 

The Binalot sa Buro Medley (Php245)which had tawilis wwas a personal favourite of mine. Combined with all of the ingredients on the plate, it was just absolutely perfect. I actually finished 3 wraps all on my own. Eeepp. 

The Pinais na GG (Php119) is also another dish worth mentioning. The galunggong fillet which was wrapped in banana leaves and contained tomato and onion then grilled was just delicious. It reminded me of relleno and I love relleno. 

The Manila’s Pork Ribs (Php280) reminded me of the Chinese Lechon Macau. Soft, tasty, and delicious ... this is best served with a lot of rice. A LOT OF WHITE RICE! Yummy yummy white rice. The tender meat simmered in sweet pineapple and barbecue sauce will make you reach for that cup of rice over and over again. 

Finally, the star of the day was placed and my jaw literally dropped. Big red crabs in coconut sauce that tasted so fresh were served to us. I loved that the claws were big and filled with a lot of meat. True to form, The Red Crab lived up to its name and its red crab was simply to die for. 

As for desserts, the Frozen Braso de Mercedes was the choice for me. The macapuno made the big difference and really highlighted the Braso de Mercedes.  Mantekado Ice Cream, meringue, graham and the strips of macapuno were just perfect. 

Overall, this was one of the most filling lunch that I have had in a long time. What I liked about it best was that eve nthough there were a lot of seafood that was served, it didn’t feel like it was overkill. The different tastes of the dishes served complemented each other and transitioned smoothly.

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* I was invited to review the food. I did not pay for my meal. However, the free meal did not in any way sway my opinion and everything you read here is MY PERSONAL OPINION. 

145/365 photoblog: MsKathyKenny

Thank you so much to the person who made this for me. It's so chic. :)

Saturday, May 24, 2014

144/365 photoblog: Dove Shampoo

Super love how I looked here with my Dove shampooed hair. It felt like I was one of those girls in the commercial with the perfect hair all laid out, ready to be pictured.

Thanks Dove.

Friday, May 23, 2014

143/365 photoblog: Cafe Pascucci

When I hold a cup of coffee in my hand, everything seems to become more clear. Coffee helps my in my thought process and clarifies things for me that usually boggles my mind. Coffee is my peace of mind in a world that won't stop.

Mega Food Tour at Mega Fashion Hall

Have you ever gone on a food tour and felt that it was the best thing that you did but only because of the company you were with? Have you ever gone on a food trip and ended the day vomiting on the side because you were just too full? Have you ever gone on a food trip and felt that it was the best decision that you made simply because all of the food you have were simply awesome?

I just recently went on the #MegaFoodTour hosted by Anton Diaz of Our Awesome Planet and SM Mega Fashion Hall and I left the place feeling awesome because the company was great, I almost vomited from feeling so full, and I realized it was the ULTIMATE food trip ever because almost all the food were just ROCKSTARS! 

15 restaurants in 4 hours. Yes. 15 restaurants in 4 hours. Can you beat that? We survived! 

First stop was at Tim Ho Wan and what made this so special was the fact that it was their opening day and we were invited to have first dibs on their food. Eeeekkkkk! How cool is that? 

We were served the glutinous rice with pork stuffing aka machang. I normally prefer the Chinese version of the machang but this Cantonese version of the machang was good. I actually finished 2/3 of the entire thing and this was just the first stop. 

The second thing we were given were the hakao and the Dumpling Teochew Style. I loved that I did not need to put soy sauce in the hakao to make it taste better. As for the teochew, its definitely something that veggie lovers would want to try. 

Finally, the star of the night came and it’s the pork buns of Tim Ho Wan. Soft, crunchy, and fluffy ... the pork buns actually melt in your mouth and when it does, you get a taste of the sweet sauce of the pork inside. Heaven in a bun indeed and at a price range of Php145 for 3 pieces, this is one piece of heaven you would want to take home to the family. Unfortunately, since it is baked fresh daily, they have a limited number of buns that they serve so I suggest you head over soon as the mall opens. 

Next on the list were KyoChon which is actually the original store that came up with the double fried chicken. Crunchy, sweet, and tasty, I love that the flavor can be felt even in the chicken meat. Chez Karine follows and if I could eat 20 of their bottled desserts and not go into sugar shock, I would. Seriously.  I would. Chez Karine is simply to die for. If you are on a diet though or are figure conscious, RUN. It will haunt you and make you break your promise to yourself to not have sweets. 

Final stop on the first level of our Mega Food Tour are The French Baker Salon de The and Custaroonery. I love that French Baker was able to take on a more elegant look and turn things around without trying too hard. The color combination of the decor along with the furniture spelled class and if that is the look French Baker is going for, they nailed it to a T. 

 Custaroonery on the other hand is a quaint kiosk in the middle of the 2nd floor but do not let appearances deceive you. They may look small but their custard makes a mean punch and this is one punch you would want to keep going back to again and again and again. 

On the 3rd floor, Osaka Ohsho was our first stop where they claim that they have the “World’s Number  1 Gyoza.”   Thankfully, they actually do have really good tasting gyoza.  I finished 2 and that’s a lot considering this was restaurant # 6. 

Restaurant # 7 is Boqueria. Now Boqueria is a Spanish restaurant that serves one of the best tasting paella that I have ever tasted. They also served us with sangria that would make you giggle in less than 10 minutes. The churros and its chocolate dip are a must!

Abe served us with their famous lamb adobo. Abe is part of the LJC group of companies that is known for its Filipino cuisine. Their lamb adobo was really tender and juicy; even the smell of the adobo was really enticing. This is best served with rice and for rice lovers, you’d definitely devour 5 cups of rice at the very least. 

We also passed by 8Cuts Burger and then we trooped off to Lugang Cafe. Lugang served us with their famous Xiao Long Bao and one bite was all it took to remind me why they are famous for it. It’s simply amazing how they managed to put so many flavors in such a small thing. 

Cinnabon was also a star simply because of their Cinnamon Buns. It is sticky, delicious, and sinfully good. Then again, it’s Cinnabon and it is a classic. 

Last on our food trip was the 4th and 5th level of Mega Fashion Hall. Vikings was a pleasant surprise because they actually served the best of their food in a plate. They had lumpia fish caviar om blinis, scandinavian gravlax, spicy ika sushi, venison terrine with blueberry compote (yes I ate Bambi and it was poor Bambi but yummy Bambi,) steamed red lapu lapu fillet, mini tornado, and spinash mushroom en croute consomme.It looked so pretty and it was so filling. Paired with red wine and it was perfect. 

I also loved that Pinkberry made an effort to ensure that we get to taste their frozen yoghurt. I’d definitely recommend it to lovers of frozen yoghurt. And finally, Lucca was the last on our list but I’m very happy to say that they were definitely not the least. I love their pecan sticky buns and a walnut sticky bun. It was so big and the drizzles were definitely abounding. 

15 restaurants in 4 hours. Wow. I survived. Happy tummy! Happy me!

Mega Food Tour is scheduled for two dates: May 30 and June 6.  What makes this different from the other tours hosted by the #MercatoCentraleGroup, the #MegaFoodTour is a FREE food tour for the qualifying winners of the best picture of dishes from any SM Megamall Restaurant on Instagram that will run from May 23 to June 6.  Each food tour is estimated to have around 20 foodie participants.

Take a photo of yourself with food from one of the restaurants in SM Mega FAshion Hall and upload it on IG. Tag @smmegamall and #MegaFoodTour. 20 random IG users will be chosen to join each tour.

So what are you waiting for? Join now!  

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* I was invited to review the food. I did not pay for my meal. However, the free meal did not in any way sway my opinion and everything you read here is MY PERSONAL OPINION.