Tuesday, January 31, 2012


A collection of the books I've read for the month of January.

Haruki Murakami
Read: Nov. 22, 2011 - Jan. 29, 2012
Rating: A

The Fault in Our Stars
John Green
Read: Jan 29, 2012 - Feb. 01, 2010
Rating: A+

Tuesday, January 17, 2012


I saw this in one of the posts in Pinterest. This is such a great reference most especially when there are times I am totally lost on what activities to do with Hael.

Credits to: http://counting-on-me.blogspot.com/2011/05/101-things-to-do-with-your-toddler.html

  1. Color
  2. Blow Bubbles
  3. Play Hide-and-Seek
  4. Peek-a-Boo
  5. Play Chase
  6. Do Finger-plays
  7. Sing a song
  8. Collect rocks in a basket
  9. Make an obstacle course out of cushions and/or furniture
  10. Make a fort out of cushions and sheets
  11. Go for a Walk
  12. Make a Car out of a Box
  13. Read a book
  14. Go to the park
  15. Finger-paint
  16. Play with Play-Dough
  17. Toss Bean bags into a Bucket
  18. Play the shell and pea game
  19. Dance to music
  20. Download games for toddlers from the Internet
  21. Practice putting things in and taking things out of boxes and bags
  22. Make a temporary slide out of a table leaf and your couch
  23. Roll a ball back and forth on the floor
  24. Scoop dirt or sand into a child's bucket (or use a serving spoon and bowl)
  25. Practice climbing by stacking boxes on top of each other (only with adult supervision)
  26. Put on a puppet show
  27. Go fishing with a yard stick and yarn
  28. Make a Horseshoe game
  29. Make a Shape Puzzle
  30. Play paper basketball
  31. Run through a Sprinkler
  32. Play with a bucket of water and a sponge (PLEASE WATCH CHILD AT ALL TIMES!)
  33. Make a Drum out of an oatmeal box
  34. Play with a kazoo
  35. Wash windows together
  36. Bang on Pots and Pans with a spoon
  37. Brush each other's teeth
  38. Play dress-up with stuffed animals and your child's clothes
  39. Stack canned or boxed food on top of each other
  40. Let child stack mixing bowls inside each other
  41. Make a playhouse out of a large box
  42. Let child play with a sticker sheet (make sure your child doesn't eat them!)
  43. Put stickers on fingers for finger puppets
  44. Play a musical instrument together- i.e.recorder, piano, etc.
  45. Go on a Smelling Hunt
  46. Frost Cookies
  47. Plant a flower or vegetable plant together
  48. Roll a tennis ball into an empty trash can or bucket
  49. Draw on a mirror with dry-erase markers
  50. Play hide and seek together- trying to find a stuffed animal or other object
  51. Have a splash party together in the bathtub
  52. Put a leash on a stuffed animal and walk around the house
  53. Record each other on a tape recorder (great for scrapbooks or journals!)
  54. Make and try on paper hats
  55. Give a piggy-back ride
  56. Play "Horsey"
  57. Talk into an electric fan (it distorts your voice)
  58. Play tug-of-war with a blanket
  59. Collect flowers (felt, artificial, real...)
  60. Make a camera and go on a Safari
  61. Play games with frozen juice lids
  62. Disconnect your phone and pretend to make phone calls to relatives
  63. Leave your phone connected and really make phone calls to relatives- let your child talk too
  64. String large beads onto or along a shoelace
  65. Squirt each other with squirt bottles
  66. Glue shapes onto paper
  67. Make sock puppets
  68. Make paper puppets
  69. Fill an old purse with toys
  70. Use a paper towel tube as a megaphone
  71. Make binoculars and go "Bird Watching" or "Stuffed Animal Watching"
  72. Put snacks in different fun containers (paper sacks, empty canisters, etc.)
  73. Act out a story from a book
  74. Walk on a balance beam- use a 2x4 placed on the ground
  75. Draw with chalk on the sidewalk
  76. Sketch an outline of your child on the sidewalk or paper with chalk
  77. Paint child's palms with tempura paint and blot on paper. Makes a great card for loved ones!
  78. Put lipstick on child and kiss a mirror
  79. Make a puddle on cement and splash barefoot in it
  80. Let child decorate and eat an open peanut butter sandwich
  81. Make a toilet paper barricade for child to go under, over, or through
  82. Do the Hokey Pokey
  83. Make a super-hero costume out of household items
  84. Do Knee-Bouncing Rhymes
  85. Play "Red Light, Green Light" saying "Go" and "Stop"
  86. Make a shoe-box train for stuffed animals
  87. Make a pillow pile to jump on (keep it clear from any hard surfaces, including walls!)
  88. Make an easy puzzle with felt and Velcro
  89. Make bracelets or collars for stuffed animals out of pipe cleaners and jingle bells
  90. Learn numbers from a deck of cards
  91. Play the matching game with a deck of cards
  92. Make a domino chain
  93. Have a picnic in the park, backyard, or living room!
  94. Play dress up in Mommy or Daddy's clothes
  95. Make a tin cup telephone and talk to each other in it
  96. Make a nature collage
  97. Mirror each other
  98. Make a "Mummy Mommy" with toilet paper
  99. Make a tape recording of short music selections and instructions to move in different ways
  100. Make and walk along a toilet paper trail
  101. TAKE A NAP!


If there's one thing I love most about Manila Hotel is that the Filipino hospitality and warm welcome can be easily felt and seen upon entering their doors.

A welcome fruit basket for their guests...

Upon our arrival in Manila Hotel last Dec. 30, 2011, we were welcomed immediately by a valet service which they surprisingly offer for free. 

The room was lovely...

View of the Intramuros

King Size bed

I love how they spoil their guests with lots of pillows. Most hotels would only equip you with a maximum of four. Pillow fights can be really fun in this room. :D

The room was spacious, comfortable and the amenities were impressive.

Ipod Dock

Waterproof LCD TV in the bathroom

The bathroom was also spacious. They have a separate walk-in for the shower and bathtub. Just like Sofitel, they also use L'Occitane for their toiletries, which is a favorite brand of mine. ;)

I love how comfortable the place is. Since you can't keep my kids off their laptops and iPods, the free wifi connection was a plus factor for our 3-day stay.

They don't have a pool as huge as Sofitel but this didn't hinder us to try it out. Too bad, the water's icy cold.  :(

It literally took minutes before they dived in. It was really that cold!!!!

Nonetheless, this was truly one of the best stays we ever had as a family and we truly can't wait til we go back to Manila hotel.

Saturday, January 7, 2012


We were all surprised when Yab asked me to book at any hotel for our New Year's Eve. I initially went to Sofitel's website but unfortunately, they were already fully booked on that day. After some discussion, we decided to have our reservations at Manila Hotel and figured we could watch the New Year's Eve countdown at the Mall of Asia. 

We arrived at the hotel on Friday, Dec. 30. Hael was sick a day before that and I was concerned that he might not enjoy our stay throughout the weekend. I was wrong.

We officially broke our tradition of spending New Year's Eve at home and it was a good thing. I could definitely see the kids having a grand time. 

It was a perfect weekend for me, too.  A weekend free from the worries of meal planning. :D

My Getup: Ladybug print sleeveless dress from Zara, Braided Belt from H & M

On the night of Dec. 31st, we headed to the Mall of Asia for dinner and spent the New Year's Eve there as well.

My New Year's Getup: Light Gray Sleeveless Top Tank from Forever21, Long Knitted Cardigan from Forever21, Neckpiece from Love Diva, White Eyelet Shorts from PICC Bazaar

We headed to TGI Friday's for dinner...

Seafood Platter

Baby Back Ribs

Chicken Tenders

Right after dinner, we decided to head out to the parking lot as opposed to the restos and the park across since it was packed with lots of people. 

And by 12am....


Just like every year, we spent our Christmas Eve and Christmas day at home. This time around, we decided to make the our Noche Buena food prepartion simpler. I decided to bake a Lasagna (Anin's favorite), bought some garlic toast from French Baker, placed the Ham in the oven and bought a classic moist chocolate cake from Conti's.

It was quiet a sober Christmas Eve but we managed to keep it lively even if there were only five of us at home. 

Ate Anin obviously wants to have a taste of that Lasagna

Hael speaking to Mommy Astwing, wishing her a Merry Christmas.

Facetime with my sister, Auie on Christmas Eve

Facetime with the girls too. :D

Sorry, we can't help it.

There, much better.

My everything.

And of course, my Yab.

Christmas Getup: Top by Forever21, Denim Shorts by No Boundaries, Neckpiece from PICC Bazaar