Saturday, July 30, 2022

Ikkoryu Fukuoka Ramen in SM Aura

We chanced upon Ikkoryu Fukuoka Ramen at SM Aura when we went there a few days ago. I wanted ramen, but since ramen is typically in the 400+ to 800+ price range, I was hesitating since I didn't feel like splurging. 

This was how B came about to find Ikkoryu. He looked at the menu placed outside and proceeded to call us. He was excited because apparently, Ikkoryu Fukuoka Ramen had affordable ramen and rice topping. 

Ikkoryu Fukuoka Ramen

This is their fried rice and their rice topping. I kid you not when I say that a bowl is so filling. The rice is heavy, and this one piece of meat is more than enough to last you through the entire bowl. It's smokey, tasty, and oh so good. 

Ikkoryu Fukuoka Ramen

The chicken karaage is juicy, and one plate is not enough. You'd need at least two orders because you'll just keep on getting more and more. Be ready to not share. The dumpling, on the other hand, was okay, but the chicken did it for me. 

These are the 4 kinds of ramen that they have. There was actually 5 but two of them were spicy and so we ended up ordering 3 that were non spicy and the tantanmen. 

What I liked about Ikkoryu Fukuoka Ramen is that the broth is rich and savory. Sabaw palang, panalo na! The noodles are also really good and the overall experience is comforting. It's the kind of food that you want to have when spending time with friends, love ones, or you just need comfort. 

I love that the place is so cozy, the menua is on point and does not provide you with too many options because sometimes that can be too overwhelming especially if you just want to have ramen. It speaks to me that they know what they are good at and what they want to focus on which is ramen that can make you feel like a Mother's hug. 

Ikkoryu Fukuoka Ramen is located at the 2nd floor of SM Aura, beside Paradise Dynasty. I suggest you go and visit it because where else can you find a super affordable ramen and karaage that does not shortchange you taste wise? 

Wednesday, July 20, 2022

Review of the Samsung Galaxy M53

I recently had the chance to do another phone review and this time, it's the Samsung Galaxy M53. This baby looks very unassuming but has 4 cameras which set the tone for everything and I can honestly say that I had high expectations for it. 

So, let's talk about the basic specs. It has a 6.7 FHD+sAMOLED display which is pretty normal these days. The camera has a quad rear 108+8+2+2MP while the front camera has 32MP which makes taking a selfie super enjoyable. 

The unit I got has 8+256GB memory and 5,000mAh. So far, one charge lasts me an entire day when I kept using it to film things. Definitely a plus in my book. The claim about the 25W Fast Charging is a little iffy for me though because it took a long time for the unit I had to charge or maybe it could have been that I got it drained of all juices which is why it took time. 

I did a hyper-lapse on the Samsung Galaxy M53 and I've to say that I was pretty happy with the output. If you're interested in watching the 1 minute 30 seconds video, click here.

Action shots are pretty good on this camera as long as there's enough light. 

It's more than okay though it's not as sharp as I prefer it to be. When it comes to food photos, it does the job. 

For Macro shots, it's passable. 

Overall, fans of Samsung would definitely go for this midrange phone. It's already available on Shopee so in case you want to check it out, here you go

Monday, July 18, 2022

What I Cooked for B's Birthday

One thing that my son told me a few months ago that made a big impact on me was having no memories of me cooking for him. When he tries to remember this, all he remembers is me making instant pancit canton. 

I was shocked and appalled at myself. I realized that I needed to learn how to cook for my eldest and also because I am now married and have a baby that will soon want memories of Mommy cooking as well. 

For B's celebration, I asked him what he wanted for the celebration and he requested that I cook. Luckily, I have been learning to cook recently and so I was able to do as he requested. 

I made steam fish since it was a celebration but I was not successful with this because I forgot to use a timer and ended up overcooking the fish. You need to remember that the most number of minutes when it comes to steaming a fish is 30 minutes max. 

This is the Pinoy version of the Korean Japchae. I actually liked how this turned out but not everyone loved it. Thankfully, my son and husband did.

This was a win for my son. He loved it. This was also my first attempt at making an onigiri and I placed a big shrimp in the middle. 

This was the big winner of the night. EVERYONE loved the gimbap that I made. Whoohoo!

I also made soy sauce chicken and though people loved it, I think this was a little bit of a fail because people thought it was teriyaki chicken. 

This one was my attempt in duplicating the teriyaki tteoppokki of Urban Seoul. It tasted good but I wasn't able to capture the whole essence of their version. 

Overall, I would like to think that I did pretty well because my son told me thank you and that he was glad that I cooked for his birthday. At the end of the day, this is all that matters. 

Sunday, July 17, 2022


The past two weeks have been a little bit insane. 

Honestly, if you tell me to tell you what happened, I really wouldn't be able to tell you in detail which is why I am writing down things that I remember in the hopes that I'll be able to look back and say to myself, "this is what happened."

It was a day of blessing. The family that I have not seen or spoken to in years turned up. The family that I have adopted over the years was also there. 

M cooked for us for the first time and it was a hit. Everyone loved the carbonara he made. In fact, I barely had a taste because it was gone in an instant.

We had the house blessed. 

B had cakes, a lot of it. He had a total of 4. 


Even Jollibee sent him food!

He had a surprise lunch with friends the next day that I organized. 

And I cooked for him. It was tiring and I now know that I will never, ever open a restaurant if I had to be the one to cook. Hats off to all the Moms who labor in the kitchen during holidays and on a daily basis. Standing the whole time, chopping, cooking, and praying that everything tastes well is HARD work. 

It was grueling and busy since I still had to work at night and then make things happen in the morning but it was definitely worth it to see my son extremely happy. 

Happy 17th my love. 

Tuesday, July 12, 2022

Conti’s Brings Hope, One Bag at a Time

Working student Lyka Bohol likes her new bag a lot. 

“Malaking tulong po,” she says. “Lalagyan ng damit, payong, at iba pang essential na bagay para pag naabutan ng ulan, hindi po nababasa yung gamit ko sa study at work.”

The 19-year-old college freshman got the bag for free as a donation from the popular food chain Conti’s Bakeshop and Restaurant. It is one of 100 bags that make up the Conti’s Brings Hope, One Bag at a Time undertaking, one of the main projects celebrating the 25th year anniversary of the homegrown brand founded by the Conti sisters of Batangas. 

The bags were personally handed over to Lyka and other students in ceremonies to mark the start of the 100-day countdown for Conti’s silver anniversary. The reason they’re unusually sturdy and water-proof is they’re made from Conti’s used tarpaulins. 

Another recipient, Milagros Remillete, is likewise very grateful for the donation, “Malaking tulong sa amin po ‘yung bag para ‘di na din po kami gagastos lalo na sa pagbabalik ng face-to-face classes.” 

Like Lyka, the 14-year-old former street child is a Conti’s scholar at the Tulong sa Kapwa Kapatid (2KK) Foundation. They received the 100 Conti’s tarp bags along with other children from 2KK and ChildHope Asia Philippines, two non-profits that Conti’s has been supporting since 2019.

Aside from funding scholarships, the company has been delighting ChildHope and 2KK children by providing them with the brand’s famous cakes on special occasions including the recent school year-ender event.

“Mostly po ng mga batang tinutulungan namin, walang bahay, so nakatira sila under the bridge, sa pushcarts, o sa mga abandoned buildings,” notes ChildHope Resource Mobilization and Communication Manager Mylene Lagman. “Malaking tulong ‘yung backpack na bigay ng Conti’s kasi waterproof, so sobrang safe ang mga gamit nila sa school.”

2KK Executive Director Miguel Lapid calls the bags a tool for the children. “The goal of the organization is to provide as many tools, to give as many opportunities so that their education would be supported further.”

A green initiative of the brand, the Conti’s Brings Hope, One Bag at a Time project was undertaken together with Filipino startup SIDE B Upcycling whose community of artisans handcrafted the 100 Conti’s tarp bags. 

“Gusto lang namin magpasalmat sa aming partner, of course yung Side B upcycling kasi sila yung gumawa ng unique bags na ito. Kaya sinabing unique kasi iisa lang sya per bag, ‘yung design iba iba,” notes Conti’s CEO and President Joey Garcia.

Side B Upcycling is grateful for letting them promote Filipino creativity and ingenuity in this initiative of Conti’s. SIDE B Chief Imagineer Stu Balmaceda says, “Unang una, yung livelihood for our partner artisans. Tuloy tuloy ang gawa, so they get to earn, and they get to elevate their craft more. As a brand and personally, big entities, big organizations that partner with us actually help us spread the word about sustainability.”

Conti’s Brings Hope, One Bag at a Time covers two of the values closest to the heart of Conti’s as a brand – education, and sustainability. In his remarks at the turnover ceremony for the bags, Conti’s CEO and President Joey Garcia said, “We wanted to see how brands like us not only grow in terms of numbers but also grow in terms of how we impact the community and help the environment as well.”

Seeing the smiles on the children, he added, was a big reward in itself. “Pinakamasarap sa pakiramdam para sa akin ‘yung makita ang inyong mga ngiti at kahit sa maliit na paraan nakatulong kami sa inyo bilang mga scholars. Hangad namin na makapagtapos kayo sa pag-aaral at sana makatulong kayo sa mga pamilya niyo.”

To know more about Conti’s Bakeshop & Restaurant, visit their website at or check out their Facebook (@contisph) and Instagram (@contis_ph) pages. Other pages bearing our name and images are fake. They do not in any way represent the brand.  

Friday, July 1, 2022

Surprise Back to the Future Themed Party for My Husband's 40th Birthday

It was something that I planned early part of May. After all, it's pretty hard to have a Back to the Future Themed Party. I actually had to pay for the package on Etsy just so I can find some materials to print. 

I wanted to do something special for my husband since he was turning 40 and thankfully, I was able to pull it off. It was a struggle, but we did it.  

I gave him little gifts here and there of different Back to the Future toys and memorabilia before his birthday just so he wouldn't notice. I figured that if I completely ignored his birthday as part of the surprise, that's when he might actually start thinking that there is one. 

Thankfully, the stars aligned and even his former boss was in the country during his birthday. So here's how the day went. 

First, we had a dummy cake. My family knows that I always get people cake so this was a must to keep up with the pretense. 

This was the celebration he knew that we were going to have. Below is the celebration that happened at night. 

To say that the surprise was a success would be an understatement. Apparently, my husband was really clueless and had no idea that there was a surprise party for him. 

I sent him off to a massage in the afternoon and then my bestie Kimi picked me up and we got the cake, decorated the place, and then I went back home and waited for the husband to arrive. 

I feel happy about the cake which I commissioned from Oh My Gee. This cake was definitely worth every peso spent. It was filled to the brim, it was heavy, it was delicious, and most of all, it was a pretty good replica of the cake design that I wanted. 

As you can see, there's even a DeLorean on top and the shoes and skateboard from Back to the Future because my husband is such a fan. 

with his older brother and family

with my cousin

with his coworkers

with our Ninong and Ninang sa kasal plus friends
It was a simple celebration but it was one filled with love, laughter, and good food. 

Cheers Mahal. Life begins at 40.