Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Cold Stone Creamery in the Philippines

The first time I heard about Cold Stone was from my sister when she went to the US few years back. No wonder when my runningmates talked about Cold Stone in Serendra, I already know it is the same ice cream parlor that my sister was telling me before.

Cold Stone is the most talked about ice cream in town and of course I insisted on trying it out although I should already be on diet. #cheatday.  The company history is already posted on their walI when you enter their place, so I guess there's no need to retype. #tamadmode.

I will be sharing though my thoughts and hope you'll join me in reliving my few minute experience in this place.   The moment we opened their door, we were welcomed by the very enthusiastic staffs.  The energy level of the staffs are so high as if we were the first customer they got.  They assisted us and explained their offerings.  Cold stones' best sellers are already labeled as their signatured mixes but you can always create your own mix.  After choosing your flavor and mixes, the staff will start mixing them in a granite stone.  Wonder why they use a granite stone?  Same here, I am also curious so I did a little research.
Based on the website I saw,  ice cream is like granite... How?  Both ice cream and granite start out as liquids which when cooled became solid, and both will melt again if the temperature gets hot enough.However, ice cream freezes at temperatures below 0°C, while granite freezes at temperatures below ~650°C.  It is also true that as both granite and ice cream increase in temperature to near their respective melting points, they get softer, as those of you who like to microwave your ice cream can tell.  So the properties of both ice cream and granite are indeed correlated.

To continue, after mixing all the ingredients in the granite stone, the staffs will surprise you with their stunts.  Your ice cream will be tossed in the air and throw it to another staff and capture it with your ice cream cup in precision. It was so cool!  I was so amazed so I wasn't able to capture the stunts.  
I got a pistaccio mixed with almonds and boyfie got one of the signatured mixes: the peanut butter cup perfection, it is a mix of dark chocolate ice cream (P158), peanut butter, reese's peanut butter chocolate and chocolate fudge (P168)

Well, my taste buds are not really a very good judge for food because I appreciate almost everything but i can tell what's not yummy for me.  For Cold Stone ice cream, i'll give 2 thumbs up for the taste and a standing ovation for the staffs' performance. So, here I was enjoying my ice cream.  Enjoy your evening everyone!

Cold Stone Cremery
Serendra, BGC
Taguig City

Monday, September 23, 2013

Make-up 101

To tell you honestly, I really have no idea on make-ups. Although I have sisters and they know how to put their make-ups on, I just don't have the confidence to make up and fix myself... I can see some people doing their makeups and it seems easy to do but I'm afraid that I might look like a gay, or worse a clown so I never tried doing it myself.  I have these as my basic tools: a moisturizer, BB cream and a press powder.  I thought the BB cream is a concealer for my eye bags or is a magic cream that can be used as foundation... I was so wrong about it.

Anyway, how did I end up attending a make-up tutorial?  It is because of my best friend in the office, Irene.  I recently shared that Irene had been recently engaged and we are now both sharing the same cloud of happiness for being the future brides.  We wanted to look our best in our weddings so we needed to know the basics of make-up.  I already booked my own make-up artist for my wedding few months ago and I trust he can make me look really beautiful on my big day.  Irene however is just starting to search for suppliers and I am trying to help her in anyway I can.

Irene's fiance has a good friend who is a professional make-up artist, her name is Kate Mercado-Moscardon of Kate's Bliss.  Kate is the prospect make up artist for Irene's wedding. Apparently, Kate has this basic and bridal makeup tutorial class for September 22, 2013, 10AM to 5PM in Pasda Mansions Panay Avenue Timog for P2800 only.  Irene mentioned to me about this and I became so interested and she registered our names for this session.

The maximum attendees for each session is only 10 pax.  We were lucky that we were enrolled in a much more smaller group, 5 pax only.  When we arrived, we were instantly exposed to the colorful pallets, different type of brushes and individual mirrors laid down in the tables.  We were also handed a basic brush set, a pack of wet wipes and a tissue as freebies.

There were a lot of things i didn't know, the do's and don't, the brands, the different colors that match my skin tones, the strokes and other techniques.  For instance, I have a lighter skin tone plus a dry face so the foundation that best suit my skin is a classic ivory, it is nothing near the one I am using which is a beige.  For the eye shadows, we were asked to check out our veins in our arms, if a prominent color of the vein is green, then a warmer color will suit you best; while if blue, then a cooler color is a perfect match.

Irene and I are both having more prominent blue veins so we needed to choose a cooler color.  We were challenged to use the color that we have never tried or the colors that we are afraid to try.  Imagine me having this green eye shadows and a striking pink eye shadows for Irene.  We were both laughing after applying the colors and deep inside, we really can't wear them in public.  But after blending those colors with brown and black eye shadows, they turned out so beautiful we can't believe we were looking at our own selves.  This is the result for our personal make ups, see the difference?

With a great mix of students, a very young and witty hairstylist and an expert and kikay teacher, we really had a good time... Well, good is not enough to explain the experience... we had so much fun.  I felt I was really beautiful that time, all of us were. The thought that we can make ourselves beautiful over and over again, the confidence it builds us, it just feels wonderful...Love it! So, here's our class,  I'm just missing our trainor and our hairstylist in this picture.

Anyway, I really have not taken any other pictures as I was so busy learning applying makeup to myself.  I will just wait for the pictures to be posted in facebook, then I'll share them to you again. This is it for now, I'm leaving you this selfie poses... hope you had a good weekend too.

P.S.  Kate is conducting the following workshops, so if you also want to be beautiful, feel free to join her classes:

Basic and bridal make up tutorial class
October 20, 2013, 10am - 5pm
Pasda Mansions Panay Ave, Timog
Fee: P2800 inclusive of snacks, lunch and freebies

Advance make up tutorial class
October 13, 2013
Pasda Mansions Panay Ave, Timog
Fee: P2800 inclusive of snacks, lunch and freebies

Visit her on facebook: Kate's bliss

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Happy birthday dear fiance!

It's my dear boyfie's birthday today and we are just stuck here in his room and decided not to go anywhere or even eat in a fancy restaurant... Why? Because he is so excited to play with his GTA (Grand Theft Auto 5) in his X-box 360.  This is always the gift that he wants for his birthday for few years now.  The release date of this game is always on his birthday that's why I really need not to think of any gift for him every year.

Reserving for a copy of this game only costs P500 in Data Blitz. You would be surprise with the long list on the reservation and we were lucky that we  still we're able to get one.  We had 6.5% discount plus a poster for buying on the first day... And all the CDs for this game were sold out afterwards... famous game, huh?.... Whew! Gamer it is!

A week before his birthday, I got him a Kinect for X-box.  Kinect is an accessory for x-box that detects voice commands and has a motion sensor... Original price is ~P6500 so I was having a second thought.  Apparently, we saw an ad in Sulit.com of Kinect (2nd hand) for only P3500 only.  I asked boyfie to try calling the seller and when he dialed the number, he was surprised that the number registered to a friend's name.  So we were able to get this Kinect for only P3000. #GoodDeal.  Try visiting Sulit.com, there's always a good find there.

So finally, we were able to try the Kinect and enjoyed a great dance night with Dance Central 3 and ultimate Zumba... #PawisToTheMax #HappyDancing... Nothing really beats a family bonding moment... 

Ooops!  I think the Yellowcab delivery is already here... Pizza, anyone?

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Farinas Ilocos Empanada

I haven't been to the northern part of Luzon farther than Baguio City.  It is in my list to visit Ilocos and Pagudpod.  Although I have never been to these places, I heard about how good the food from Ilocos are.  Well, well, well... I think I don't need to go to Ilocos anymore just to taste their food as I have found an Ilocano restaurant here in the Metro.

The Farinas Ilocos Empanada serves authentic Ilocano dishes.  Authentic? only true Ilocano can validate but for me I guess it is authentic.  So, prepare your plates and indulge yourselves to these delicious dishes:

Bagnet: P300 per half kilo

Longanisa: P200 per half kilo

Dinakdakan: P135 per serving

And of course, the ever famous Empanada

It is 100% guaranteed fresh as empanada is made to order.  You can see them prepare the empanada based on the ingredients you will choose.  You can try different combination that may include longanisa, vegetable, native egg or even bagnet in your empanada, and oh, an extra cheese too!

And they also offer other Ilocano dishes... Yum yum yum!  Don't worry about your blood pressure as they claim ZERO Cholesterol on all their fried food. They are using 100% organic oil or cholesterol-free oil...  Hhhmmm.... Really?

Anyway, despite I have tasted the Ilocano food, I still want to go to Ilocos. Hehehe!

Farinas Ilocos Empanada branches that I have seen so far:
Marcos Highway
Better Living Paranaque

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Flower deliveries around the globe

September is the birth month of the two of the most important people in my life.  My sister Mabz's (13th) and boyfie's (18th).  Let me share with you the birthday of my sister.  I was supposed to be posting this yesterday but I waited for pictures to be posted in facebook first.

A week before today, my brother in law thought of giving my sister a present on her birthday but since she is in Australia he thought it will be impossible. It's the 1st year for my sister to celebrate her birthday away from us and although she is with her friends and co-workers, I bet there's part of her heart that is still missing... her family.

I read somewhere that there are some flower shops that are catering international deliveries but I  was not quite sure.  So I consulted Mr. Google and noted two online shops: Manila Flower  and Pickup Flowers 

I sent these links to my BIL and he tried ManilaFlowers.  He did chose the flowers and the arrangement, put some information and ordered the flowers.  The delivery leadtime is about 2-3 days, so we were still just on time.  The only trick is that, the mode of payment available is only thru Paypal.  My BiL tried creating an account but he was experiencing error on his email address.  So I created my first ever Paypal account and that was what we used to purchase.  

We were hoping that Manila Flowers will be able to deliver his present on the day of her birthday and true enough when my sister went home from work yesterday, a bouquet of flowers is sitting in her doorstep.  She did not expect to receive anything on her birthday and indeed was very surprised how his husband did it.  She was very happy. #thoughfulhusband

My BiL also invited us over for a small dinner to celebrate my sister's birthday.  We are greatful to the technology, she can see us celebrating her birthday thru Skype.  There's really nothing impossible in this world, talagang pag may gusto, may paraan.   Thank you Yang for making my sister super happy.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

A Killer In Your Fridge ~ Sweet Poison…A MUST READ

When I read this article, all I can say was whoah!!! ...  I saw this article shared by a friend from facebook from Rhoda Gessner, who has been studying about health and nutrition and I am so glad she shared this very valuable piece of information...I'm just confused if she's really the author because there was a disclaimer at the bottom of her posted article.

In October of 2001, my sister started getting very sick She had stomach spasms and she was having a hard time getting around. Walking was a major chore. It took everything she had just to get out of bed; she was in so much pain.
By March 2002, she had undergone several tissue and muscle biopsies and was on 24 various prescription medications. The doctors could not determine what was wrong with her. She was in so much pain, and so sick she just knew she was dying.
She put her house, bank accounts, life insurance, etc., in her oldest daughter’s name, and made sure that her younger children were to be taken care of.
She also wanted her last hooray, so she planned a trip to Florida (basically in a wheelchair) for March 22nd.
On March 19, I called her to ask how her most recent tests went, and she said they didn’t find anything on the test, but they believe she had MS.
I recalled an article a friend of mine e-mailed to me and I asked my sister if she drank diet soda? She told me that she did. As a matter of fact, she was getting ready to crack one open that moment.
I told her not to open it, and to stop drinking the diet soda! I e-mailed her an article my friend, a lawyer, had sent. My sister called me within 32 hours after our phone conversation and told me she had stopped drinking the diet soda AND she could walk! The muscle spasms went away. She said she didn’t feel 100% but, she sure felt a lot better.
She told me she was going to her doctor with this article and would call me when she got home.
Well, she called me, and said her doctor was amazed! He is going to call all of his MS patients to find out if they consumed artificial sweeteners of any kind. In a nutshell, she was being poisoned by the Aspartame in the diet soda.. and literally dying a slow and miserable death
When she got to Florida March 22, all she had to take was one pill, and that was a pill for the Aspartame poisoning! She is well on her way to a complete recovery. And she is walking! No wheelchair! This article saved her life. If it says ‘SUGAR FREE’ on the label; DO NOT EVEN THINK ABOUT IT!  I have spent several days lecturing at the WORLD ENVIRONMENTAL CONFERENCE on ‘ASPARTAME,’ marketed as ‘Nutra Sweet,’ ‘Equal,’ and ‘Spoonful. ‘In the keynote address by the EPA, it was announced that in the United States in 2001 there is an epidemic of multiple sclerosis and systemic lupus. It was difficult to determine exactly what toxin was causing this to be rampant. I stood up and said that I was there to lecture on exactly that subject.
I will explain why Aspartame is so dangerous: When the temperature of this sweetener exceeds 86 degrees F, the wood alcohol in ASPARTAME converts to formaldehyde and then to formic acid, which in turn causes metabolic acidosis. Formic acid is the poison found in the sting of fire ants. The methanol toxicity mimics, among other conditions, multiple sclerosis and systemic lupus.
Many people were being diagnosed in error. Although multiple sclerosis is not a death sentence, Methanol toxicity is!
Systemic lupus has become almost as rampant as multiple sclerosis, especially with Diet Coke and Diet Pepsi drinkers. The victim usually does not know that the Aspartame is the culprit. He or she continues it’s use; irritating the lupus to such a degree that it may become a life-threatening condition. We have seen patients with systemic lupus become asymptotic, once taken off diet sodas.
In cases of those diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, most of the symptoms disappear. We’ve seen many cases where vision loss returned and hearing loss improved markedly.
This also applies to cases of tinnitus and fibromyalgia. During a lecture, I said, ‘If you are using ASPARTAME (Nutra Sweet, Equal, Spoonful, etc) and you suffer from fibromyalgia symptoms, spasms, shooting, pains, numbness in your legs,
Joint pain,
Unexplainable depression, anxiety attacks, slurred speech, blurred vision, or memory loss you probably have ASPARTAME poisoning!’ People were jumping up during the lecture saying, ‘I have some of these symptoms. Is it reversible?’
STOP drinking diet sodas and be alert for Aspartame on food labels! Many products are fortified with it! This is a serious problem. Dr. Espart (one of my speakers) remarked that so many people seem to be symptomatic for MS and during his recent visit to a hospice; a nurse stated that six of her friends, who were heavy Diet Coke addicts, had all been diagnosed with MS. This is beyond coincidence!
Diet soda is NOT a diet product! It is a chemically altered, multiple SODIUM (salt) and ASPARTAME containing product that actually makes you crave carbohydrates.
It is far more likely to make you GAIN weight!
These products also contain formaldehyde, which stores in the fat cells, particularly in the hips and thighs. Formaldehyde is an absolute toxin and is used primarily to preserve ’tissue specimens.’
Many products we use every day contain this chemical but we SHOULD NOT store it IN our body!
Dr. H. J. Roberts stated in his lectures that once free of the ‘diet products’ and with no significant increase in exercise; his patients lost an average of 19 pounds over a trial period. Aspartame is especially dangerous for diabetics. We found that some physicians, who believed that they had a patient with retinopathy, in fact, had symptoms caused by Aspartame. The Aspartame drives the blood sugar out of control. Thus diabetics may suffer acute memory loss due to the fact that aspartic acid and phenylalanine are NEUROTOXIC when taken without the other amino acids necessary for a good balance.
Treating diabetes is all about BALANCE.. Especially with diabetics, the Aspartame passes the blood/brain barrier and it then deteriorates the neurons of the brain; causing various levels of brain damage, Seizures, Depression, Manic depression, Panic attacks, Uncontrollable anger and rage. Consumption of Aspartame causes these same symptoms in non-diabetics as well. Documentation and observation also reveal that thousands of children diagnosed with ADD and ADHD have had complete turnarounds in their behavior when these chemicals have been removed from their diet.
So called ‘behavior modification prescription drugs’ (Ritalin and others) are no longer needed. Truth be told, they were never NEEDED in the first place!  Most of these children were being ‘poisoned’ on a daily basis with the very foods that were ‘better for them than sugar. ‘It is also suspected that the Aspartame in thousands of pallets of diet Coke and diet Pepsi consumed by men and women fighting in the Gulf War, may be partially to blame for the well-known Gulf War Syndrome.
Dr. Roberts warns that it can cause birth defects, i.e. mental retardation, if taken at the time of conception and during early pregnancy. Children are especially at risk for neurological disorders and should NEVER be given artificial sweeteners.
There are many different case histories to relate of children suffering grand mal seizures and other neurological disturbances talking about a plague of neurological diseases directly caused by the use of this deadly poison.’
Herein lies the problem: There were Congressional Hearings when Aspartame was included in 100 different products and strong objection was made concerning its use. Since this initial hearing, there have been two subsequent hearings, and still nothing has been done. The drug and chemical lobbies have very deep pockets.
Sadly, MONSANTO’S patent on Aspartame has EXPIRED! There are now over 5,000 products on the market that contain this deadly chemical and there will be thousands more introduced. Everybody wants a ‘piece of the Aspartame pie. ‘I assure you that MONSANTO, the creator of Aspartame, knows how deadly it is.
And isn’t it ironic that MONSANTO funds, among others, the American Diabetes Association, the American Dietetic Association and the Conference of the American College of Physicians?
This has been recently exposed in the New York Times. These [organizations] cannot criticize any additives or convey their link to MONSANTO because they take money from the food industry and are required to endorse their products. Senator Howard Metzenbaum wrote and presented a bill that would require label warnings on products containing Aspartame, especially regarding pregnant women, children and infants.
The bill would also institute independent studies on the known dangers and the problems existing in the general population regarding seizures, changes in brain chemistry, neurological changes and behavioural symptoms.  The bill was killed. It is known that the powerful drug and chemical lobbies are responsible for this, letting loose the hounds of disease and death on an unsuspecting and uninformed public. Well, you’re informed now!
Note:  I have been studying health and nutrition for 35 years.  What I’ve learned in the past 3 years has been by far…the most valuable.  My husband was diagnosed with liver disease 3 years ago and that sent me on a very aggressive search for help.  I came across an article about Dr. Otto Warburg that said…he won the Nobel Prize in 1931 for proving that no disease including cancer, can survive in an alkaline body.  From there…a friend told me about a Japanese medical device that makes alkaline water.  She went on to tell me that since our body is 70% water, drinking alkaline ionized water is the easiest way to raise your pH.  It makes perfect sense…the health “puzzle” is made up of many pieces including water, diet, exercise, sleep, etc.  But since 3/4 of that puzzle is made up of one big piece…WATER, drinking enough of the “right” kind of water will have a HUGE impact on your health.  If you’d like to learn more, click on the link and request your FREE eBook on Healthy Water:   http://www.usakangenwater.net
(just sharing this info from another blog…i’m not the author)

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Let's Tie the Knot

I am just too happy for my dear friend Irene, she got engaged on her birthday last Friday and I can't help sharing this good news to you my dear readers.  

Irene and I are the best of friends in the office and we almost had the same love status since we met and became friends... We are both in a relationship for a long time and we didn't see any hint that our guys will be proposing soon.  I was much worse than her that I even thought I was already having a midlife crisis, I wanted to even request from Mark Zuckerberg to add another status in facebook for us...WAITING FOR PROPOSAL... I was so desperate then... hehehe!

Earlier this year when I told her that I am finally getting married, the tears in her eyes showed her happiness for me but her question, "kelan kaya ako?" striked me and realized that she was also wanting the proposal that bad like I did.  Irene is really a strong woman, she never showed her despair, I just see it in her eyes...  I was wishing and praying that she'll also receive a proposal soon so we will both be truly happy.

Irene is my Maid of Honor for my upcoming wedding and a night before she met my designer, I dreamt that we are going to Calaruega but it turned out that we've been to another church, a bigger and older one and when I asked why we came to a different church, she said, it is where she will be getting married.... When I told her about it, she hoped she'll receive a proposal soon but she thought it will be by the end of this year or earlier next year.

Apparently, his boyfriend had been secretly planning his proposal. Papa Doc finally asked her to marry him and a bulging diamond ring was put on my dear Irene's finger on the day of her birthday.  I bet that was her best birthday ever.  I was so happy to see this picture this morning.  This is indeed a perfect picture of a happy couple.  Congratulations girl!

Buwan ng Wika

Because the kids didn't have their mom to look after them, I stepped up to do my sister's mommy duties.  The kids need a mommy the most especially when there are events in their school.  Yes, my niece and nephew both are now enrolled in school.  Ate Yanis on her Kinder II and Migs in prep.

It is already September but their school just celebrated Buwan ng Wika last Friday.  Rewind for a week,  I visited the kids one afternoon and checked out their diary in school.  The yaya forgot about the costumes required for their performance the next week.  Good thing, boyfie knows where we can buy costumes in Marikina. I only spent less than 500 for both of their costumes.

I took a half day leave to watch the kids performance.  The program was held in a covered basketball court in their village in Betterliving, Paranaque.  Migs was a challenge as he didn't want to wear his manlalatik costume.  We needed to persuade him that the costume is like Juan Dela Cruz's outfit and saying "Yun oh!" and took a lot of my convincing power before he finallywore it.  It was just a 2 minute walk but migs rode his bike going to the venue, pagbigyan... may sumpong pa... Hehehe!

It was the start of the program, Ate Yanis was about to have a solo opening prayer song but she was chickened so some of her classmates joined her in front.  Mahiyain masyado mga pamangkin ko, hayz!... 

And it was time for Migs to perform the Manlalatik.  Look at all his classmates, bigay na bigay sa pagpukpok ng mga bao, while Migs still has sumpong, he looked like he wanted to join but eventually chose to just stay in his chair. Hayz!

Afterwards, Ate Yanis danced the "Magkaugnay", she was also kind of shy but she danced so gracefully.  I was so proud of her.  I took a video and sent it to their mom.  She is also so proud of the kiddos.

It was indeed very fulfilling seeing the kids perform in event like this.  My half day leave was well spent and so worth it.