Sunday, June 26, 2016

Neo at Bert Lozada Swim School

Ever since Neo was 2 years old, we wanted to enroll him to a swim school.   For the hubby and me, swimming is a survival skill that one has to learn.  La Traviesa Hotel and Resort, a small hotel-resort near our home is an affiliate of Bert Lozada Swim School or BLSS.  We’ve planned to enroll Neo as early as 2014.  Though BLSS offers swim school for babies, the affiliate resort near us only offers swim school for toddlers and above.  So we waited for 2 years for Neo to start learning the art of swimming.

Early this summer, we already enrolled Neo for summer classes in his school.  We don’t want to get him out of the habit of reading and learning new things academically.  But we also don’t want him to be stressed so we waited for his summer classes to finish first before enrolling him at BLSS.  He started swimming classes last May 10.

One swimming session takes up 10 days with an hour of lesson each day.   The cost of BLSS in La Traviesa is Php2750 for one session plus Php500 annual fee.   This includes insurance during the whole duration of the swimming lessons.

The kulit little boy learning how to swim. 

Neo was listed under 7-8AM class.  He is under Snapper 1 and was taught the basic swimming lessons.   After 10 sessions, Neo can hold his breath under water with a maximum of 10 seconds.  He was promoted to Snapper 2. 

There are 7 stages of swimming lessons for BLSS: Snapper 1 -> Snapper 2 -> Jammer 1 -> Jammer 2 -> Jammer 3 -> Swim Squad -> High Performance Training (Swim Team).

No ID picture for the 2nd session na. 

After Neo’s first session, the hubby and I thought that one session would not be enough for Neo to learn the basics of swimming.  So we enlist him again for another batch (good thing, school classes started mid of June already). 

Neo with his swimming coaches.

We saw a lot of improvement with Neo’s swimming skills after 2 sessions.  Neo can swim with the help of his kick board.  He is a pro in Angel Float (when not everyone can do it).  He can do simple dog paddles as well.  I thank his coaches for being very patient in teaching him.  All we need to do now is make sure he continues learning how to swim – maybe Saturday lessons with Papa will help him. J

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Press Release: BUBI Trampolines Bring Happiness with Every Bounce

Established in the Philippines last 2011, Bubi Trampolines began operation under Sia & Mark Amsement Inc. (SMAI).  With more than 12 years of experience in creating quality products and distribution of trampolines over Europe, SMAI is also experienced in aftersales follow-up and high quality products.

Bubi Trampolines offers not only fun but also has medical benefits for kids.   It helps kids improve their self-esteem and behavior, develop their motor skills, and teach persistence.  It also reduces restlessness and alleviates stress, strengthens the immune system, and stimulates the internal organs.  It can also help weigh loss and maintenance as well.

Bubi Trampolines are located at the following malls:
SM Malls
Cebu - Seaside
San Lazaro
Cebu - Consolacion
San Pablo
Cebu - Mabolo
Cebu - Seaside

Robinsons Malls:     

Metro East

Other Malls:

Starmall SJDM
Starmall Taguig
Farmer's Plaza

Bubi Blocks and Bubi Sand Castles are also part of the Bubi Family!

Monday, June 20, 2016

Revisiting UPLB

I am proud Iskolar ng Bayan or Iska for short.  Both the hubby and I graduated from UP Los Banos.  After graduation, we can only count in one hand the number of times we went back to UPLB because of 1) time issues and 2) traffic.  But we have always wanted to visit the place and bring Neo with us.

The weekend after Election 2016, Leo and I decided to go and visit UPLB na nga.  It was just timely because Neo’s Mamita (my grandmother) need to visit her doctor at Calamba Doctor’s Hospital – so we sent her to Laguna too.

I am not too sure, but I think there is only one way going to Los Banos, Laguna from Cavite.  It’s SLEX -> Calamba -> Los Banos.  Please correct me if I’m wrong so we can use a different way that’s not too traffic. 

Along the way, we told Neo that we will be going to Papa and Mama’s old school.  It was a long drive and we passed by Mt. Makiling.  Neo was mumbling something about our school being so far and his school being just near.  Ha! Wait ‘til you go to college, little boy.

We arrived at UPLB an hour before lunch time.  It was too hot.  Since it was a Saturday and there were no classes, we had a hard time looking for shade since the buildings are closed.  We just did a quick tour of our old campus and reminisced what fond memories we had when we were still in college.

My old building with a banner of my former professor naming him a Scientist. Wow!
Pahinga saglit while enjoying the field’s view.

There are a lot of new establishments outside of UPLB na.  I can no longer locate Papus (our favorite siomai vendor).  Vega is no longer a popular area, though Mcdo still is.  The photocopying center near SU is already demolished.  There are new establishments too beside UPF’s precinct.  YMCA is now a nice-looking dormitory compared to its old stage.  I think they had it renovated.  And a lot more.

Carabao Park with Kwekkwek tower. 

Mama and Papa’s selfie at Carabao Park.

Visiting FOREHA.

After touring we went to IRRI (International Rice Research Institute) to have lunch.  Just a trivia: Scholars from different Asian countries go IRRI to study rice research.  The Philippines is a pioneer of whatever rice research and developments we had decades ago.  And now, we import rice from these countries.  Sad no?  I wish we could have sustain our independence on rice production, but sadly we can’t.  L

We also went to our old dormitory at Foresty, FOREHA.  After that, we went back home.  We didn’t stay long since it was hot, but we definitely shared a lot of memories with our little boy while roaming the campus.

Selfie with Oble

Friday, June 17, 2016

Stoops Bagnet Ilocos

Bagnet is one of the famous delicacies of Ilocos province.  It was only 2 years ago that I was able to taste my first Bagnet.  It was a pasalubong from an officemate who went to Ilocos for work.  It was delicious!  But then, I won’t be able to taste this food always since Ilocos is not really near.  Luckily for me, and for all Bagnet lovers, Stoops Bagnet Ilocos has opened in the Metro.

Just a bit of a background, Stoops Bagnet Ilocos started when two friends, Jay Seneres and Galen Cid, were inspired to open a restaurant serving authentic Ilocano dishes.  It was 2008 that the first Stoops Bagnet Ilocos branch opened in Vito Cruz, Manila.  Now, after 8 years, Stoops Bagnet has reached several branches already and is also available at Cavite. 

Stoops Bagnet Ilocos Lancaster Square Imus.

Now, enough talking and let these photos show you the different dishes served by Stoops Bagnet Ilocos.

Special Bagnet Meal served with Kamatis Bagoong Lasuna at Php105.

Special Bagnet Meal served with Kamatis Talbos ng Kamote Bagoong at Php105.
Empanada at Php45.

Pancit with Bagnet toppings. 

Sinanglaw, almost similar to Papaitan, at Php65.

Stoops Bagnet Ilocos also serves different meals other their specialty, Bagnet.  They also offer Chicken Bagnet, Boneless Bangus Belly, and Ilokano veggie dishes.  This is to create a variety for all their customers. 

Ilokanos are known to serve very tasty food and Stoops Bagnet Ilocos lived in the standard.  Food at Stoops Bagnet Ilocos are not only delicious, they are very affordable.  They also give big servings.  This gives a very family friendly ambience to Stoops Bagnet Ilocos. 

You may visit any branches of Stoops Bagnet Ilocos and try their delicious Bagnet meals.  For Cavite residents, Stoops Bagnet Ilocos has two branches: Lancaster Square Imus and Robinsons Place General Trias. 

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Century Park Hotel

2016 Elections has brought so much busyness for me, workwise.  One busy weekend of April, our small family sans Papa Leo, found ourselves billeted at Century Park Hotel.  It was not a planned stay, since we only book the said hotel because it was close to my office and quite cheaper than the other hotels nearby.

I booked an overnight accommodation in a Superior Room with breakfast for two less than a week prior to our date of stay, through  It cost me Php4500.  This is so much cheaper than booking at the hotel website or any other websites, or walking-in.  A superior room at Century Park Hotel costs Php6900.  

It was a very busy day at the office and we arrived at Century Park Hotel past 11PM to check-in.  We had a surprise because their superior rooms are all fully booked so they decided to upgrade us into the Junior Suite. J 

Our stay at Century Park was a quick one, but it didn’t hinder us to have luxurious stay.  We slept, we rested, we recreated by swimming at the pool, Here’s why:

Room – 4.5 out of 5.  Since we were upgrade to a Junior Suite, I couldn’t say anything bad about the room.  It’s a very spacious room with a total area of 67sqm.  It has a queen size bed, a very big sitting area, a walk in closet area, a spacious bathroom with a bathtub.  It has an LED TV, refrigerator, safety deposit box, and complete set of toiletries in the bathroom.  The only sad thing about the room is that the refrigerator doesn’t have anything inside it when it should have a mini bar. L  But then again, it’s a small issue, and not really a problem.

Beautiful partition holding the LED television.  I’d like to have something like this at home.

Amenities – 4.5 out of 5.  Century Park Hotel is an old hotel, but it has a lot of amenities that can complete a staycation.  There are two swimming pools, restaurants, function rooms, and a gym.  Also, the hotel entrance has an x-ray scanner for luggage and bags.  They have roving civilian guards too in the lobby and reception area.  Talk about good security.  I took out a 0.5 for amenities because you can borrow towels in the swimming pool area but cannot bring it in your room.  I think as hotel guests, you should be able to just log your room number and borrow the towel – but that’s their policy, we should respect it.  

Staff – 4 out of 5.  The staffs at Century Park Hotel are nice.  They are courteous, they smile when they greet you, they will push the elevator button for you, they will answer your questions nicely, they even gave us free drinks, they will help you in any concern you may have (constant request for cold water for example hehe), but I honestly feel that there’s something lacking.  I cannot pinpoint the exact reason, but I think there is something missing lang.

Food – 4.5 out of 5.  This is one of the best buffet breakfast I have every tried.  It has a lot of choices and the foods do taste delicious.  You can get as many servings as you want with the various selections.  The only issue I have is that I wasn’t able to see where they put the bacon, so when I get a hold of the bacon, I was expecting it to be delicious, but sadly, it’s not. L However, overall, I find the buffet breakfast included in our room to be very satisfactory.

Lobby area where we had our breakfast buffet.

Location – 5 out of 5.  Century Park Hotel is located at Pasay City, in front of Harrison Mall.  It has a very strategic location in the city near malls and amusement parks.

Value for Money – 4 out of 5.  I always believe that hotels in Metro Manila are so much expensive.  But I think, with the location, the room, and amenities that Century Park has gave a good value for our money.

We had a very quick stay at Century Park Hotel but it didn’t hinder us to have a luxurious one.  J

Saturday, June 11, 2016


Goldilocks, one of the country’s favorite bakeshop, has turned 50 years old this year.  Yes, Goldilocks has given us five decade of sweetness overload.  What better way to celebrate its 50 years than a birthday party. 

Goldilocks invited their employees, media, and a charity for its 50th birthday party celebrated at Enchanted Kingdom.  There were games, entertainment, and of course, a big birthday cake – because no birthday is complete without a cake. J

After the program, guests were given a chance to enjoy Enchanted Kingdom. 

It was a rainy afternoon, but that didn’t stop Goldilocks in celebrating its 50 years of giving Filipino families delicious cakes and goodies J

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Bohol 2016: Marcelina’s Guest House

Our Bohol itinerary was really polished except for the fact that we have to be out of Tagbilaran by 8AM on our 4th day.  This means, we have to stay one more night (our 3rd night) in Bohol and that equates to additional expenses on accommodation.  We don’t want to spend so much; therefore we searched online on cheap hotels/inn near Tagbilaran airport.   

We found Marcelina’s Guest House.  It is located just a few meters away from Tagbilaran airport.  It is one of the cheapest and most modest of the inns I found online.  We booked our room when we arrived on our first day at Bohol and reserved at Triple Room costing PHp1200 overnight, with no breakfast.

Room – 4 out of 5.  Other than the small area, the room is equipped with everything a traveler would need in a hotel room.  Clean beds, air-conditioning unit, small LED TV, hot and cold shower, and basic toiletries. 

Amenities – n/a.  Since Marcelina’s Guest House is like a normal house with rooms for rent, there really is no available amenity just like any hotel would offer. 

Staff – 3 out of 5.  This is a guesthouse; therefore no roaming staff can be seen.  The only staff we saw was the receptionist who wasn’t so friendly and wasn’t so snob either.  When we checked-in, someone helped us bring our luggage on our room, but when we checked out, it was all us.

Food – n/a.  No food was offered in the accommodation.

Location – 5 out of 5.  Since this guesthouse is just 50 meters away from Tagbilaran Airport, we didn’t have to (1) get up to early to prepare for an early flight and (2) spend so much for commute to the airport as we only walked.

Value for Money – 4 out of 5.  Marcelina’s Guest House served its purpose for us – an affordable accommodation we can spend the night before an early travel.  We just need a clean room to stay and no frills whatsoever.

If you’re looking for an affordable overnight stay near Tagbilaran, try Marcelina’s Guest House.  It’s a practical choice we made and I can highly suggest.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Neo at Nickelodeon’s Slime Cup Run 2016

The hubby and I love joining fun runs.  We find this a good bonding time and of course a way of getting fit and healthy.  It has been our dream to involve Neo in this activity once he is big enough to endure a run.   

Last Sunday, we were invited to by Que of to participate in Nickelodeon’s Slime Cup Run 2016.  We were so excited to this fun run since 1) this will be Neo’s first fun run and 2) Neo gets to enjoy being slimed after the run.

There are three categories for the Nickelodeon’s Slime Cup Run: 3K Obstacle Run, 1K Run with your Canine Buddy, and the 200m dash for kids.  Neo and I were registered in the 200m dash.  I failed to check the time for the category we were in so we were at SM Mall of Asia before 6AM.  Apparently, our run will start at 730AM.  Luckily, Nickelodeon made the area a fun one for kids.  There are different activities kids can try – and Neo did most of the activities.

Neo played in the giant inflatable, did The Great Snail Race, participated in the Huge Donut Toss, and tried most the activities by the sponsors.  By the time of our race, I think Neo was tired already but this didn’t hinder the fun he had when it was his time to run.

The 200m dash was divided into 3 parts: the girls run, the boys run, and the parent-child run.  Neo participated in the boys run.  I was a little bit worried because at the start of the race, a lot of little boys stumbled.  I was torn between helping the kids who got hurt and running after my child who might get hurt.    

Look! Spongebob and Patrick leading the warm up exercise.

My little boy is a fast runner.  I was actually panting while running after him at a 200m dash – this is me talking, who finished a 21K run last year.  Kaloka.  Most of the boys got hurt.  Little boys are harot when they are part of a game, and I think it was a good decision on the organizer’s part not to combine boys with girls.

Our little runner. 

But when it was time to get slimed, hurt or not, everyone had fun.  Neo even went back a couple of times in the slime area.  He actually enjoyed being slimed! J

He got slimed!

Thanks, and Nickelodeon for the fun event.  My little runner enjoyed every part of it! J

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Bohol 2016: Tourist Spots ~ Part 2

Here’s the continuation of the city tourist attractions we went to at Bohol:

Loboc River Tour and Lunch – Buffet Lunch with tour: Php450.  Loboc River Cruise includes lunch.  Ric-ric, our driver, went inside the office to get our tickets.  After 10 minutes wait, he gave us our tickets for the cruise and lunch.  We were so lucky because we didn’t have to wait in line (since there’s a long line for waiting tourists).  The lunch was just okay, nothing extra-ordinary.  What really is amazing was our seat in front of the boat where we get the view of Loboc River.  In the middle of the cruise, some locals entertained us by dancing and singing in a platform by the river.

Tarsier Conservatory – Entrance Fee:  Php60.  Tarsiers are cute creatures.  Tiny nocturnal mammals with big round eyes captured our little boy’s heart.  Since tarsiers are known to be suicidal when disturbed, only few tarsiers were sent out for tourists to see.  Neo had so much fun looking for them.  J

Habitat Bohol – Entrance Fee: Php45.  Habitat Bohol is a conservatory for butterflies.  Here I learned that there are 3 genders of butterflies: male, female, and beki-fly (half-male, half-female).   Only few butterflies can be seen in this place.  If you want to see more butterflies, I suggest you go to Paradizoo at Tagaytay.

Chocolate Hills – Entrance Fee: Php50.  Hundreds of hills form the famous Chocolate hills of Bohol.  Once you’re up in the viewing deck, you will really marvel and be in awe of God’s perfect creation.  You can try the ATV that will bring you the foot of the hills, we didn't though because Neo won't be able to try it, and waiting for us might not be his idea of fun. 

The Shiphaus – No entrance fee.  This is a house that was designed to look like a ship because the owner is a ship captain.  We just took a picture of this “attraction”, because I don’t consider it as one since here in Cavite you can see houses, schools, and even water refilling stations designed as a ship.  Nothing extraordinary.

Bilar Manmade Forest – No entrance fee since this is a highway.  The attraction here is to take your picture while trying to avoid the incoming vehicles from a blind curve.  Really a buwis-buhay experience.

Our buwis-buhay shot.

Bamboo Hanging Bridge – Entrance fee:  Php20.  This is a bridge made of bamboo.  It sways every time someone moves/walks.  Papa and Neo weren’t really so pleased or scared since it was just a bridge.  I think it’s a nice experience because you don’t get to cross a bamboo bridge a lot of times in your life (only metal bridges hehe).

We toured all this Bohol attractions in 10 hours, 8AM to 6PM.  Kuya Tatsky’s vehicle-for-hire in Bohol is really efficient.  Aside from saving a lot of time, there is no need to hire for tour guide because your driver is your tour guide (except for tour guides inside the attractions which you will have to tip) who will help you acquire tickets, take your photos, and even suggests where to buy affordable pasalubongs J

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