Our Three-Week American Adventure

Our Three-Week American Adventure

Ever since I was a kid, I have always wanted to go to the United States of America–mostly due to the number of relatives we have over there, but also because of what I saw in movies. In high school, I even had an “American dream” which was to study fashion abroad and live in an upscale apartment in Manhattan. Fast forward to the present, and traveling to the US has finally become a reality!

So here’s what happened–our cousin Jonathan was going to get married to his fabulous girlfriend, Tina–in Denver! Lolo said that he wanted Chiara and I represent him at the wedding. So we applied for a US Visa, got approved, and on June 24 of last year, we were on our way to the US! If you want some tips on how to get a US Visa, I wrote about our experience here.

Chiara, my younger sister, basically did the whole itinerary and coordination to make sure that our three week adventure would be nothing short of exciting. The objective? Aside from attending the wedding, we wanted to be able to visit most of our relatives.

So here goes! I’ll just be sharing the highlights for each state we visited but will also write a separate post for each one (please give me time).

NEW YORK, NEW YORK!

New York was a blast–and a beauty in every angle. Even just walking along the city gave me goosebumps. We were able to do the MUSTs– see a Broadway Show, go to Times Square, see the Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, and Flat Iron, stroll in Central Park, do a Big Bus tour, go to the Museum of Modern Art, see the 9/11 Memorial and World Trade Center, and even ride the subway! Auntie Anne even bought us each a bag of treats from Dylan’s Candy Bar.

We were also in the city for the Gay Pride parade, and though we didn’t witness the parade itself, we saw a lot of people who looked like they were on their way there. It was just a really fun and festive day wherever we went. Continue reading “Our Three-Week American Adventure”

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Ode to Joe

03 March 2018, Los Baños, Laguna–When I saw this handwritten note outside the all too familiar door of Joe’s, my heart sank. It was a goodbye that meant a lot–maybe too much. Because for me, and for a lot of elbi people, Joe’s was a restaurant that held too many memories.

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For most, it was the restaurant you brought someone you were serious with. At that time, Joe’s was perhaps the most expensive restaurant in Los Baños, but no one complained because the food was exemplary. Back when there weren’t too many food stops and restaurants in elbi, Joe’s was always the top choice for dates, special occasions, or a major catching up session with a good friend you haven’t seen in a while.

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Quality products for pets: Hyperflite Jawz disc and PupCup [Review]

Quality products for pets: Hyperflite Jawz disc and PupCup [Review]

It’s been so long since I wrote a pet-related post. We’ve been planning on this article for quite some time but I have just been so busy to compose it. So before I start, here’s a photo of the two furballs.

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Anyway, I’ll just be discussing two major products–a disc and a water jug. To be more specific, it’s the Hyperflite Jawz Disc and the PupCup. As a bonus, I’ll also give some feedback on the Kong Classic Flyer.

Continue reading “Quality products for pets: Hyperflite Jawz disc and PupCup [Review]”

Hong Kong: Ocean Park and Mongkok again

Hong Kong: Ocean Park and Mongkok again

It’s every kid’s dream to go to Disneyland/Disneyworld. So it wasn’t a surprise when the first sure thing in our HK Itinerary was Disneyland. But then we also wanted to go to Ocean Park. And the tickets are expensive–and there are 6 of us, which makes it very expensive. So we had to choose only one.

So, why Ocean Park? We decided this by asking people we know who have been to both Disneyland and Hong Kong. The older people said that HK Disneyland is more for kids compared to the other Disneylands, but we couldn’t care less–because Disney is Disney and we are Disney kids for life! Then friends told us that if we want action-packed rides, we should definitely choose Ocean Park. So, Ocean Park it was.

One tip for less cost: get your tickets from your hotel concierge or from the different shops on the first floor of Chungking Mansions–way cheaper!

How to go to Ocean Park from Tsim Sha Tsui

From TST, take the MTR to Admiralty (that’s just one station) and then interchange to the lime green line (South Island Line) at Platform 5/6 and get off at Ocean Park. The ride from Admiralty to Ocean Park is around 14 minutes. This is a pretty long ride and your ears might pop as you will be traveling to another island. Use your Octopus card for $11.9 fare, $5.9 for children, and $2.0 for the elderly.

When you get off at the Ocean Park Station, you’ll be greeted by sea creatures decorating the pillars of the station. It also looks so bright and so clean. And then you’ll walk on a short bridge to the park’s main entrance.

Continue reading “Hong Kong: Ocean Park and Mongkok again”

Hong Kong: Ngong Ping Village and Mongkok

Hong Kong: Ngong Ping Village and Mongkok

Our original plan for Day 2 was supposed to be Ngong Ping Village and the much talked about Nan Lian Gardens. Google Nan Lian Gardens and you will understand why it is popular. However, due to time constraints and aching feet, we decided to just go to Ngong Ping Village to have at least a cultural experience. Afterwards, we went to Mongkok to meet with Lolo’s business partners.

Oh, if you want to check out our itinerary for four days and four nights, here is our DIY itinerary.

Ngong Ping Village, Big Buddha (Tian Tan Buddha), and Ngong Ping Piazza
So Ngong Ping Village is this open-air village that is designed in the old and traditional way. I really thought it was a legit old village, but I later learned that it was created specifically for tourism. A lot of tourists go to visit the Big Buddha, so the Ngong Ping Village was designed to accommodate a large number of people. Because it was made for tourists, it has a lot of souvenir shops and restaurants.
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Hong Kong: Kowloon Park, The Peak, Causeway Bay

Hong Kong: Kowloon Park, The Peak, Causeway Bay

This is a more detailed post on our Day 1 in Hong Kong. For a more detailed itinerary for four days and four nights, check out our DIY itinerary. We went to Kowloon Park, Central Station, The Peak, and Causeway Bay.

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It is just walking distance from Chungking Mansions, Tsim Sha Tsui, where we stayed. Upon entering the Park, you will see a map so you can plan your route. Something amazing: Hong Kong is such a PWD-friendly city! The maps even have braille letters.
Continue reading “Hong Kong: Kowloon Park, The Peak, Causeway Bay”

Hong Kong DIY Itinerary: 4 Days and 4 Nights

Hong Kong DIY Itinerary: 4 Days and 4 Nights

It’s that time of the year again–for our annual family vacation. After much thought, we decided on Hong Kong, which is one of the most popular tourist destinations.

I was assigned to make the itinerary, which I was able to do with the help of Google. Thank you, technology! However, we weren’t able to do everything we wanted, but at the end of this article, I’m going to show you the itinerary I planned for 31 May to June 4. The itinerary is complete with costs, transportation instructions, and other activities.

Now, most itineraries you will find on the Internet will include day tours to either Macau or Shenzen, which we decided to forego. Of course, it really depends on your preference. For this trip, we decided we wanted to see more of Hong Kong. Here’s a quick summary video of our amazing trip!

Continue reading “Hong Kong DIY Itinerary: 4 Days and 4 Nights”

7 problems communication majors have when it comes to math

7 problems communication majors have when it comes to math

Most communication majors have no patience for math–I certainly don’t. It was only in 5th grade when I really enjoyed math, and it was only because I understood it (thanks to the best math teacher ever). Anyway, now that I’m in grad school and I have subjects like accounting, financial management, and quantitative methods in business, my feud with math has started all over again. I rounded up this list that some of you may be able to relate to:

1. When you understand the word problems, but you don’t know how to compute for the answer.

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Or not.

“I know what is being asked for, but how do you compute for it?” Then you have classmates who are accounting majors–they KNOW all the formulas, but they don’t understand the context of the problem. Can we be groupmates please?

Continue reading “7 problems communication majors have when it comes to math”

Infusion Gourmet Cafe & Deli: for the health conscious foodies

Infusion Gourmet Cafe & Deli: for the health conscious foodies

Infusion Gourmet Cafe & Deli is located at Dancel’s Dormitory, F.O. Santos Street, Umali Subdivision, Los Baños, Laguna. It’s a small, intimate, and cozy restaurant that serves healthy and delicious food. The ambience of the place is really something–it will make you feel relaxed and comfortable while waiting for your order. It makes for a nice escape from the usual fast food restaurants.

Here are some of the dishes we have already tried. All are tasty, healthy, and just the right amount. Rice meals come with your choice of red rice or white rice.

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Grilled turmeric chicken (PhP 130.00)

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Getting a US Visa: Bloopers and Tips

Getting a US Visa: Bloopers and Tips

My sister and I just got approved last Monday–and we received our visas Wednesday (just two days after the interview)!

I decided to share with you what we went through so that we could be of help because the journey wasn’t that smooth. To guide you in applying for a US visa, everything you need is in this link. I read that everyday to ensure that I didn’t make any mistake.

But I still made some bloopers. So don’t fret. It’s best to be ready, to double check everything. The lesson I learned is this: that no matter how ready I sometimes think I am, I still get hit in the face by something I never thought of.
Continue reading “Getting a US Visa: Bloopers and Tips”

Holy Week 2017 & the Supremo 4K

Holy Week 2017 & the Supremo 4K

Similar to last Holy Week, I spent this year again with Mark’s family in Bukidnon. Last year, we had a Bukidnon-Davao roadtrip then we stayed in Samal Island for three days. This year, we spent two and a half days in their farm in Lantapan, Bukidnon, then we went back to Cagayan de Oro for a staycation.

The trip was also a good opportunity to use my newly bought Supremo 4K action camera. I bought the Supremo 4K while I was renewing my Globe postpaid plan. I had been contemplating since last year about buying a GoPro but I was hesitant to spend a lot given that I don’t really spend a lot of time doing thrilling hobbies such as cliff diving, sky diving, etc. Basically, I just wanted to make videos again and not have to carry around a DSLR or a video camera. So I thought the Supremo 4K was a good deal at PhP 4,390 (which can be deferred up to 3 months).

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GIF from Globe.com.ph

Continue reading “Holy Week 2017 & the Supremo 4K”

Life outside a crate

Life outside a crate

As many of you know, I am a mom to a wonderful beagle named Snoopy, who is now 1 1/2 year old. Life with Snoopy didn’t start out easy–potty training, chewing stuff up, and the infamous beagle bolts and the energy! But now, we have reached harmony. We have a routine we have been following since the day he arrived and dogs, as you know, live for routine.

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Snoopy

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Compilation #foodporn post: Burgers

Compilation #foodporn post: Burgers

Sometimes when I eat out, I’m not able to take a photo of each item we order. Other times, I’m alone. As a result, I tend to have only a few photos of each resto. Browsing through my album, I notice a common food item that has remained timeless over the years. Friends, let’s all welcome one of the best food creations ever–the Burger.

Here are some of the amazing burgers I’ve had during the past year.

Continue reading “Compilation #foodporn post: Burgers”

Exploring Marikina: Dirty Harry’s Diner

Exploring Marikina: Dirty Harry’s Diner

As Marikina is continuously becoming more and more popular because of the many food havens, it is my family’s duty to explore the city we live in. Lilac Street is the most famous as a street for foodies, but we recently tried a restaurant in a lesser known street in Marikina.

Dirty Harry’s was discovered by my father via their Facebook page, so we immediately made plans for the weekend. Our whole family, sans Jayjay, went to Dirty Harry’s for a Saturday dinner.

Located at the 2nd floor of the Village Lifestyle building along Panorama street corner Vision street, Dirty Harry’s looks simple and inconspicuous.

Continue reading “Exploring Marikina: Dirty Harry’s Diner”