Thursday, December 31, 2009

2010: Destination of Dreams

I wanted to declare in my life that 2010 is going to be my best year. With so many emotional struggles and bondages in life that I have to face, I’m not brave enough to say it. But I thought to myself, yeah right, in my dreams maybe, but then I thought again, why not? I deserve it, right?

We all have goals and dreams to achieve in life and sometimes some of them are impossible to achieve. Although I have a lot on my list, I’m not letting the public know what they are (yet). and while I do have an open mind about achieving your goals and how-life-is-limited-don’t-waste-it living-someone-else’s-life-advice, I’m not ready to share them with you because I need to preach to myself first and be a living example.

For this New Year, here’s a prayer that someone prayed for me that I believe that would open doors for me to become a greater blessing to other people. I think we had enough of destructive words said against us and let’s start supporting each other with uplifting and building words.

Heavenly Father, I pray for the boldness and the courage to make my own decisions for the abundant life that Jesus came to give me (John 10:10), that You will open a new door of great opportunity for me that no man or woman can shut (1 Corinthians 2:12; Revelation 3:8) and surround me with Your favor (Psalms 5:12) with the creative work I desire. And also employ for me that gifts and talents you have placed within me and lead me, by the power of the Holy Spirit, to that person who is seeking my unique abilities. Prosper me in the position you have for me, as I carry out your will and your purpose.
Father, help me to finish what You have called me to do, be all You want me to be and do all You want me to do and have all You want me to have.
And give me a steadfast spirit to step out of my comfort zone and into Your great plan for my life. You are a Father of restoration and I asked you boldly to restore the years that was stolen from me in every area of my life. In the name and blood of Jesus, Amen. And God, isn't it my time to shine? Just asking..

Have a blessed, joyful, peaceful, exciting, adventurous, abundant New Year to everyone.

Love and light,

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas

My family and I usually eat out during Christmas Eve most especially when dad was still alive. It has always been a tradition every year. As the years go by, we still do eat out but with less people. Some of my siblings have other activities at church and for this year's Christmas Eve dinner, it's only me, my mom, my brother Anthony and his wife Christine. We had a buffet dinner at Senju, a Japanese restaurant at the Edsa Shangri-La Plaza Hotel. This is actually the first time I brought my camera to take food photos at the restaurant. I was using flash at first but I noticed that some people were looking at me, so I decided not to use them. Here are some random photos of the food, but not all, that we had for tonight.

Cucumber Salad

Edamame - My favorite

My Teppanyaki Plate


Ingredients for the Sukiyaki

There's nothing green on this plate. :D Other dishes in random order: agedashi tofu, chicken karaage, grilled gindara, prawn tempura, chicken terriyaki, tofu and radish stew.

Chicken Teppanyaki

Agedashi Tofu


Japanese Sake Wine Jelly (it looks like black sesame seed jelly with red beans to me)

Green Tea Chocolate Fondue

Green Tea Mousse

Coffee Jelly

Banana Zen Zai

While Christmas is commonly associated with family and friends, food and gifts, Christmas trees and lights and other activities, the most important part of Christmas is the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Have a meaningful and hopeful Christmas to everyone.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Three Days and Two Nights in Boracay

Last December 8-10, my sister and I along with two of her friends went for a short vacation in the land of paradise. Three days and two nights in Boracay is not enough. It turned out that this short vacation lasted only one day as the other day was spent traveling to and from Boracay via Kalibo, Aklan. Aside from taking the plane from Metro Manila to Kalibo, you also have to take one and half hour bus ride, a 20 minute boat ride and another 10 minute car ride to reach your destination. Then, I realized later on that there is another way which only requires a boat ride. By the time I reached Boracay, my head was already spinning but it was all worth it as seeing the blue waters, cream sand and the vast sky slightly covered with clouds is a breath of fresh air.

Upon checking in, the first thing we did was to look for food. When you’re traveling, you may eat something that you’re not supposed to eat. And I did have a beef sausage on a bun at the airport and maintained my blood glucose by eating dried mangoes.

For this post, I want you to suspend all judgments about food. Stop thinking whether this food is healthy or not for awhile. Just think of them as food. Pardon the food photos (as well as my over- and underexposed photos) as some of them are quite blurry.

We stayed at the Waling Waling Beach Hotel (Waling Waling is a flower which is described as "Queen of the Philippine Orchids") which serves Filipino food. We took a hotel package that consists of breakfast and dinner. When choosing a hotel, make sure to reserve only for breakfast. That way, there would be a chance for you to try other restaurants. There are so many great hotels to choose from and lots of food to try. There were not much people on the beach at this time of the year. It was actually cloudy when we arrived. The sun actually showed up on the last day but it was still a great place to unwind and relax. If you feel like pumping up your adrenaline, there are also other water activities you can do. But 3 days and 2 nights is definitely not enough. On my next visit, I would stay longer on a different hotel and do other beach and water activities aside from the island hopping, snorkeling and the banana boat ride.

Here are some random photos of the beach at different times of the day and some food photos.

Buko Juice (Coconut Water)

Pinakbet (Stir-fried vegetables cooked with fermented fish called bagoong)

Crab with Garlic and Soy sauce

Beef Caldereta (A rich tomato-based stew traditionally cooked with goat meat). Should I call this a vegetable caldereta?

Chop Suey (A melange of stir-fried vegetables cooked with pieces of meat, usually pork)

Pan-fried Tanigue Fish Steaks

Grilled Chicken, Filipino Style

One of the common breakfasts in the Philippines: Deep-fried Bangus (Milkfish) and Eggs for breakfast. What happened to my fish? Bangus is an unofficial symbol of the Philippines.

Chicken Adobo with Coconut Milk and Young Ginger

Another version of Pinakbet

Lechon Kawali (Crispy Roasted Pork Belly) - good thing this photo is blurry or else you will salivate.

Grilled Ham and Cheese Sandwich (@ Two Seasons)

Pinoy (Filipino-Style) Puttanesca (with olives, sun-dried tomatoes, local dried fish called tuyo, chorizo, button mushrooms and tomato sauce) (@ Two Seasons)

A salad of romaine lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers and deep-fried banana chips; balsamic vinaigrette (@ Two Seasons)

Love the sound and the movement of the waves

West Cove - popularly known as Pacquiao’s Resort, is not Manny’s but is owned by businessman Crisostomo Aquino, who is a big fan and friend of the Pacquiaos. To the island folk, the West Cove is Pacquio's Resort. Manny Pacquiao is the famous Filipino professional boxer.

Someone's getting married.

Most of the food are really good. You might have noticed there are no dessert photos. I noticed that too when I arrived back here. It only means I’m going back again soon.

Hope you enjoyed it.