Sunday, December 30, 2012

Christmas Eve Dinner 2012

For the last several years, we have been out of the country during Christmas.  But since we stayed home this year, I was able to personally prepare our Christmas eve dinner.  

I remember a few years back we had a Christmas eve buffet dinner in Hong Kong, I didn't fully appreciate the food spread because of the limited time available.  Add to the fact the two younger ones were so much younger then, and needed more assistance.  Eating at home is so much more relaxed.  It is made more enjoyable if, like me, you also enjoy cooking and trying new recipes.

Since I decided that ALL the food are going to be home-made, I started prep work in the kitchen mid-afternoon to make sure that I won't be hurried.  I wanted to enjoy the process since I was going to make it for my family for Christmas Eve. after all.  

Pardon the photos since they were all just taken with my daughter's iPhone cam.  As you know, my hands are tied in the kitchen.... So anyway, here's what we had for our simple celebration:

Caprese Salad on Skewers.  Grape tomatoes, basil leaves, truffle noir cheese, drizzled with extra virgin olive oil, generous sprinkle of freshly ground peppercorns and sea salt.  This is a family staple, even on ordinary days as this is so easy to prepare, and the flavors just pop in one mouthful.


Baked Brie with Truffle Mushroom, topped with Roasted Honey Almonds. You cannot see it here but underneath those roasted almonds is a layer of crusted brown sugar.  This is hands down the favorite dish of the night.  So easy to prepare, but it made my family think the world of me.
Baked pears with caramelized balamic vinegar topped with crumbled stilton cheese and pistachios.  The kids usually refuse to eat any kind of blue cheese, but somehow this one was tolerated somewhat... or they were just being cooperative and grateful.


Roasted chicken with garlic and lemons.  This roasted chicken is another family favorite, and on the few occasions that there are leftovers, I find that they taste even better the next day.

And I just love the roasted garlic... I simply press at the ends and all the garlicky goodness slides out easily.  Mash and eat with the chicken.

Grilled rib-eye steak on a bed of arugula and strawberry salad, drizzled with balsamic vinegar dressing.  My carniverous family could not let a meal pass us without red meat, so I grilled a few slabs of rib-eye and placed them on top of the saladHate to admit, but I prepared the salad to find a way to limit their consumption of red meat.

Linguinie with mushrooms and garilic with truffle cream sauce.  This is a special request from C, and I made sure to make the sauce generously cover the pasta as everyone loves the cream sauce... no fighting over food because it's Christmas Eve.:)

You might notice that I was very generous with using truffle oil, using it even in several dishes; and that is because I bought it at Bacchus Epicerie over at PowerPlant Mall the day before Christmas for 20% off.  I bought a small bottle of black truffle oil (about 25ml if I am not mistaken) from them about six months ago for P1,200.  And for this recent purchase, I just paid less than a thousand only.  

I did not prepare desserts anymore, but I want to share with you that the red velvet cake from Karen's Kitchen is such a stand out that it will soon be a staple on every celebration!  It's so good, so moist and just the right amount of sweet.  

That's about it.  Leaving you all as I celebrate the New Year with a staycation.  See you all 2013!

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Thursday, December 13, 2012

Iloilo: Batang Pinoy National Champs 2012

Just came back a week ago from accompanying a daughter to Iloilo for the Batang Pinoy National Championship. It's J's first time to travel for a swim meet, and she was naturally excited for it. The 5-day sojourn practically seemed like a mini-vacation for her. Imagine, not having to go to school, and being in the company of her good friends. What more can a girl ask for?

In a way, it was also a vacation for me... 4 days of not having to drive/tutor/cook. Could pass for a bakasyon grande... hahaha!
grabbed from my daughter's instagram photos 

On the scheduled day of the opening of the Batang Pinoy games, Typhoon Sendong was also expected to make landfall in the Visayas, causing not a few athletes to be stranded in their hometown. Hence, the games had to be moved a day later, leaving us all with a free day!

Inspite of the typhoon warning and the storm signal that was raised all over the Visayas, the sun dominated the sky in our part of the province.

Instagram photos from the daughter's phone.
Photo-op with Akiko Thompson after the awarding.

And before you now it, we are on our way home. Just as well, since I was starting to miss the husband and two younger ones already.:)
Next post: Where to stay and eat in Iloilo

Monday, December 3, 2012

Kipling: A Brighter Christmas for a Brighter Tomorrow

December is already upon us.  Are you done with your Christmas shopping already?  Gifts to the inaanaks are already wrapped and waiting to be delivered next week; but there are still a few names on my shopping list.

For those of you who are still looking for what to buy, Kipling offers sporty and glam bags that are perfect adventure companions for your daughter, sister, best friend, or even as a gift to yourself.  I love the vibrant red color of the Holiday collection.  Your recipient won't be the only one thanking you for this fashionable gift, the children sponsored by World Vision will be thanking you for your generosity as well.  For every Kipling bag or luggage purchased from December 1 to 31, 2012, Kipling will donate Php 500 to World Vision.  What a fun and generous way to be fashionable!

Press-kit :
             This season of giving, Belgian bag brand Kipling joins forces with World Vision to bring “A Brighter Christmas For A Brighter Tomorrow,” a program that aims to provide additional funds for the education of children under the care of the world renowned Christian development and advocacy organization.

            According to the Benjamin Go, President of Greyhound Marketing Corporation, exclusive distributor of Kipling in the Philippines, the partnership is a timely effort to spread the fun and happiness that’s instilled in every Kipling bag. “There is no greater joy this Christmas than knowing we have brought smiles to others, especially children. Through “A Brighter Christmas For A Brighter Tomorrow” program, we can make not only the holidays, but also the future, brighter for the children of World Vision.”
            “We are very delighted to have this partnership with Kipling, which is known globally for bringing fun and joy through its fashionable bags. We're happy that this time, Kipling has decided to reach out and bring the same kind of goodwill to ensure the education of children sponsored by World Vision,” says National Resource Development Associate Director Jun Godornes.

            Joining Kipling and World Vision in celebrating the launch of this meaningful endeavor are some of the country’s biggest celebrities who are also extending their support to the program. These include Miriam Quiambao, Jasmine Curtis-Smith, Kylie Padilla and Jessica Connelly.

            Fashionable ladies on-the-go can also share in giving children a brighter tomorrow by shopping for a cause.  For every Kipling bag or luggage purchased from December 1 to 31, 2012, Kipling will donate Php 500 to World Vision.

With Kipling Philippines distributors, Benjamin and Polly Go; event host, Miriam Quiambao; and myself
Kipling is available online at and at SM Mall of Asia, SM North EDSA The Block, SM Megamall, SM Bacolod, SM Iloilo, SM Davao, SM Cebu, SM Lanang Premier, Robinsons Place Ermita, Rustan’s Alabang Town Center, Rustan’s Shangri-La, Rustan’s Gateway, Rustan’s Makati, Landmark Makati, Landmark TriNoma and soon-to-open Centrio Mall in Cagayan De Oro. 

To know more, visit Kipling Philippines on Facebook and get to find out more exciting news and promos from the lovable monkey.

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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Wishful Thinking: {Wardrobe} Swim Mom Uniform

Sports has always been a part of my kids lives, especially for my eldest, JAlthough the level of intensity was not so heavy back then when she was younger.  We initially started with soccer camp during summer, and then moved to once a week soccer lessons, and this increased to twice a week of soccer training when she played for her school team.  This was long before the Azkals were formed and the Younghusbands entered the local football scene.  While playing for the school soccer team, she decided she also wanted to swim, so she mixed swimming training on alternate days when she doesn't train for soccer.  

Those days are long gone, as she has already made up her mind that swimming is THE sport for her.  She has gone a long way since she started 3 years ago, competing at the D-League (developmental) level, moving up to class A category, and finally, qualifying for the Batang Pinoy National Championship this December. 

She has always made me proud of her simple achievements in the pool, each hard-earned medal made more significant because she was able to successfully combine academic excellence while being a student leader and a competitive swimmer.  Although she has a million more laps to swim as far as swimming internationally is concerned, I am hoping she gets there... eventually. 

... Otherwise, how can I channel my inner Victoria Beckham while cheering for her during competitions? Hahaha!

Being a swim-parent means being in charge of logistics, food provisions, motivation, etc.  I am always there with my kids every training, 6 days a week. Oftentimes I am multi-tasking as I wait by the pool deck, trying to meet the needs of each of my three kids.  And because of that, I thought to myself that I deserve a new wardrobe... even if it's just wishful thinking. :) 

I love Breton shirts, and pairing them with Converse all-stars low-cut is a great way to being a chic sporty mom.
Don't fancy red? Blue and green is a great sporty fashion combi, too.

And this fashion template shows us all that pink doesn't have to be always prim and proper.

Gray and white looks crisp and clean.  Perfect for those all-day swim meets.  Just ditch the hoop earrings.

And if you want to stand out in the crowd, making it easier for your kids to spot you in the hundreds of spectators, wear something bright like this yellow tank.

What about you?  What is your daily uniform like?

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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Lemon Water

One of the recent things I have added to my family’s routine is to make lemon-infused water available during breakfast and dinner.  Now that my kids are all older, I have stopped giving them milk in the morning, and have instead alternated mornings between honey-infused warm water and lemon-infused warm water.  They still get their daily calcium fix from yogurt and chocolate milk taken after their swim training.
Lemon-infused water is super simple to do and the benefits are just too good to ignore. Water and lemon, that’s it.!Since I am making a batch for my entire family, I simply just fill up a pitcher with warm water and squeeze one lemon.  This makes enough for my family to drink in the morning, before we eat our breakfast.  

Three times a week, I make warm lemon water in the morning, which we all drink before we take in anything else.  Come dinner, I also serve an icy, cold lemon drink that is infused with ginger, tarragon, and cucumber.  Lemons by themselves are acidic and they only have an alkalizing effect once they are digested by our bodies.  I want to be cautious and not serve this everyday/too much to protect their teeth from the natural acids of the citrus.
According to my sister-in-law (who told my husband, and who in turn told me), mixing lemon with water that is warm will provide the most health benefits.  On the contrary, mixing lemon with cold water reduces the digestive benefits of lemon.  I have searched it up on the net, and it does say that warm water allows for the release of the full enzymatic properties of the lemon.  But, drinking fresh lemon juice at any temperature is better than not drinking any at all.

What Are the Lemon Water Benefits?
  • Boosts immune system Lemons are high in Vitamin C and potassium.  A great combination for my kids as Vitamin C makes sure that their bodies are well-equipped to fight infections/colds; and potassium stimulates nerve function to avoid muscle cramps during swim training.  Potassium also helps C control his blood pressure. 
  • Balances body’s pH level. Lemons are an incredibly alkaline food. It is true that they are acidic on their own, but once it is metabolized inside our bodies they start to have an alkalizing effect. 
  • Good for stomach. Lemon water has excellent digestive properties because it helps loosen toxins from the digestive tract.  It eases constipation, heartburn, bloating and other digestion problems, especially when mixed with warm water.   Lemon juice acts as a liver tonic and helps you digest your food by helping your liver produce more bile. It decreases the amount of phlegm produced by your body. In large doses, it is also thought to help dissolve gallstones.
  • Cures Throat Infections Lemon is an excellent fruit that aids in fighting problems related to throat infections, sore throat and tonsillitis as it has an antibacterial property. Warm lemon water  offers relief from cold and flu symptoms while providing some much needed Vitamin C.
Icy Lemon Water infused with ginger, cucumber and tarragon

1/2 cucumber, washed thoroughly and sliced thinly
1 inch ginger, peeled and sliced thinly
a handful of fresh tarragon leaves ( you can also use mint. I just use tarragon because I have a wild bush of them in my herb garden that needs to be tamed )
1 whole lemon, washed and brushed thoroughly, sliced thinly
1 pitcher water
1. Peel and slice ginger. Clean tarragon leaves. Brush the outside of the lemon and clean thoroughly. Wash cucumber thoroughly.
2. Pour hot water over the ginger and let steep for 5 minutes, depends on how you like the flavor of the ginger to come through.
3. Add tarragon to the ginger water and let it steep addition 5 minutes.
4. Add slices of cucumber and lemon. Add enough water to the brim of the pitcher.
5. Let it sit inside the refrigerator, to allow flavors to meld.
6. Serve icy cold.
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Monday, November 19, 2012

Kitchen Project: DIY Cream of Anything Soup Mix

Most days, it's a lonely lunch time for me.  I do not enjoy cooking for one, and I'd be just as content eating a sandwich instead.  I am only eager to cook if it's for the entire family, so the big cooking production always happen come dinner time. There are days, like when it's rainy, when I want a cup of soup to go with that plate of food.   But I am not willing to go slave in the kitchen just for a cup of soup.  Thankfully, I have now found a quick fix solution for anytime the soup craving sets in.

It is so easy to make, and so tasty that I do feel like patting myself on the back.:)  It is a DIY dry mix that you just add with water every time you need cream soup (think Campbells cream of mushroom and the like). 

Incidentally, when I first came across this on the net, I had just made a fresh batch of my home-made celery salt.  So instead of suing the bouillon specified on the original recipe, I just substituted with 2 tablespoonful of my homemade celery salt.  The DIY celery salt is another kitchen project that has turned into a routine already whenever there are celery leaves available.   I have used it to make baked eggs, minestrone and a whole lot more .

DIY Cream of Anything Soup Mix
Recipe found via Pinterest, inspired by pinner: One Orange Giraffe

1 cup non-fat powdered milk
3/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup bouillon/seasoning granules (if you have cubes you have to smash them up, or you can also substitute this, like I did, with 2 tablespoons of celery salt)
2 tablespoons onion powder
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon pepper

To make mix:  Just dump in everything in a bowl, and mix them up properly.  Store in a tightly sealed container, and it will keep for several months.  I keep mine inside the refrigerator since the celery salt is homemade so I just want to extend shelf life.

To cook: combine 1/3-cup mix and 1-1/4 cups cool water in a small saucepan. Do not use hot water as it will cause the cornstarch to lump up.  Stir it well and bring it to a boil over medium heat. Boil and stir for a full minute. Remove from heat. It is now ready to use in any recipe calling for a can of Cream of Mushroom or Celery or Chicken Soup.

You can use the mix as is, or you can use it as a base for making cream of mushroom, just add fresh mushroom), or whatever you want to make a cream of.  I have also used it to flavor the white sauce of my lasagna and baked pastas.

I just love it that the Phenomenal Papa thinks the world of me whenever I serve this for breakfast.  He doesn't know the story behind is that I really ran out of breakfast ideas, and all I have in the kitchen are days old ciabatta.  The crusty bread is a perfect mix for this cream soup.I just make this mix as is, and top with freshly picked thyme, reheat the ciabatta in the oven... breakfast is served in less than 5 minutes!:)

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Monday, November 12, 2012

Of Birthdays and Beauty Marks

Getting very near that "supposedly" wonderful age of forty (yikes!) must do wonders for my self-esteem, for I have finally learned to come to terms that my body will never be the same as it was before I had kids.

Yeah, I am that kind of woman who has dozens of "issues." You have heard me whine about my unpreparedness to be called someone else's tita. You've also seen how I was cornered to admit that I was (serial) lying about my age. You've also been a witness on how I (desperately) try to camouflage a less than perfect beach body. There are times when I'd get really conscious about the extra layer of skin and fat that has permanently wrapped itself around my belly; made more irritating by the fact that it seems to laugh at me as I put on that tight fitting pair of low-slung jeans... there it shows itself - giggling uncontrollaby at my attempt to pull my pants up all the way . :) You know what I mean.:)

After more than a decade of the Phenomenal Papa's assurances that when he looks at them he just sees beauty and sacrifice, I am finally beginning to believe him... yes, gullible me. The marks are quite ugly to look at and they make my stomach look like a mess, but my husband looks at them as "beautiful battle scars." The marks that showed I lovingly carried each one of his three precious children into the world.

As I inch myself closer and closer to that age of living fabulously, I have come to terms that the stretch marks, the c-section scar, the wider hips, and the mom-flabs that have taken over my entire body, they do make me look more beautiful - even if it's just in my husband's eyes.:)

Yes! this time of the year always work like a magic charm; blessings are always counted twice, and setbacks are intentionally overlooked. Just so grateful to be a part of my family. I look at my husband and see a loving man whose strong arms have, at all times, protected me; whose generous heart has always prioritized me; whose forgiving spirit has, time and again, deliberately ignored my shortcomings.

I see the kids and I am thankful that they are healthy and into sports, that they are doing well academically, that they have a close relationship with God. But, I am also thankful for having them, all three of them, when I need to wear a swimsuit... yes, most especially, when I need to wear a swim suit!!! Otherwise, what good excuse can I have for that belly. tee-hee-hee!

And as always, this verse just uplifts and inspires:

For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
-Jeremiah 29:11

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Phenomenal Tip: DIY Tarte Flambées

Tarte Flambee seems to be on every foodies' lips nowadays. What's up with all the buzz? Despite its fancy and sophisticated French name, it is just simply a thin crust pizza. I enjoy the occasional date-night with the Phenomenal Papa, but I am not overly eager to order this on the menu. BUT, I am fervently dying to re-create it at home - in my own kitchen, with the kids... not to mention that it is so much cheaper!:)

We regularly have pizza nights at home, with the toppings all lined up so everyone can just make their own pizza by liberally piling on whatever they wish on the dough. So, last weekend when it was the designated pizza night, I told everyone that I am putting all the glitz for our weekend dinner for the spectacular "Tarte Flambée Nuits." Little do they know that is just a fancy renaming. Haha!

Allow me to share with you my version of an easy to do tarte flambee using my favorite store bought "pizza dough." It is not actually a pizza dough, but a tortilla. I have never been inclined to make my own dough, so when it is pizza night in my house, I always use Village Gourmet's tortilla. It always gives the same results: pizza that is ultra thin and crispy.

For this particular night, I prepared thin slivers of smoked salmon and maple-smoked bacon.

Since the tortilla is very thin, there are a few things to keep in mind when you want to get a crisp texture:

1st, pre-bake the tortilla;
2nd, put care when piling on the toppings... definitely do not overload with toppings;
3rd, have a light hand when using tomato sauce and/or creme faiche, as too much liquid will make the crust soggy.

Tarte Flambee with smoked salmon, capers, fontina and 
gruyere cheese, creme fraiche  

tortilla bread
pre sliced smoked salmon
slices of fontina and gruyere
capers (you can also fry them to a crispy flower if desired)
creme fraiche, (I made my own, following the DIY recipe here)

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Brush surface of tortilla with a very light coating of olive oil and place on baking tray. Pre bake for about        3-5 minutes until warm and toasted, taking care not to leave it so long that it changes color.
3. Remove from oven and put desired toppings.
4. Return to oven and bake for another 4-5 minutes or until tortilla turns lightly golden.
5. Drizzle creme fraiche after final baking.
6. Slice with pizza slicer and serve with freshly cracked pepper and/or chili oil.

Tarte Flambee with maple-smoked bacon, balsamic caramelized onions, tomatoes, mozzarella, creme fraiche  

tortilla bread
Olive oil
caramelized onions (I used this well-loved, super-easy recipe right here)
chopped tomatoes: cut thinly and use just the meaty portion, and drain any juices
creme fraiche, (I made my own, following the DIY recipe here)
fresh herbs, you can use any. I used sage, basil and thyme because that's what was available from my potted herb garden.

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Brush surface of tortilla with a very light coating of olive oil and place on baking tray. Pre bake for about 3-5 minutes until warm and toasted, taking care not to leave it so long that it changes color.
2. Heat a medium pan over high heat. Chop the bacon into bite-size pieces, then add them to the hot pan. Cook until crisp, stirring occasionally. Remove them to a bowl or plate, keeping about a tablespoon of the bacon fat in the pan.
3. Make the caramelized onions, following this recipe here.
4. Spread the creme fraiche, making sure to go lightly–too heavy a hand will make it soggy. Top it with the chopped tomatoes, caramelized onions, crispy bits of bacon, mozzarella and herbs.
5. Return base to oven and bake for another 4-5 minutes or until tortilla turns lightly golden.
6. Slice with pizza slicer and serve with freshly cracked pepper and/or chili oil.

I assure you, there will be plenty of compliments from some very pleased little diners about how a good cook you are.:)

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Ganso-Shabuway: Japanese Style Hot-Pot

My kids love to eat shabu-shabu style; they find the DIY process so amusing.  Not too much for me, because once the novelty of cooking wears off, after the first 20 minutes, I am stuck with cooking the rest of the items on the platter.   Last Sunday when we were at Rockwell, we tried Ganso Shabuway.  While we've tried other chinese-style shabu-shabu restaurants in the past, this is our first time to have it Japanese style.

I learned that the main difference between the Chinese-style and the Japanese style shabu-shabu is simply the soup base.  Ganso Shabuway offers traditional sea-weed, original miso, and spicy miso.  We shared two pots between the five of us so we were able to try all three soup base.  The boys got the spicy miso and sea-weed broth. While us girls got the plain miso broth.

When we eat at any shabu-shabu restaurant, we always order a set menu; we find it to be the most economical way to order shabu-shabu.  We ordered the menu set D for four (P2,045.00), which came with 2 plates of Angus beef slices, 3 vegetable plates, 4 cups of rice, and 2 hot pots of our broth of choice.  We also ordered two bowls of udon, and an extra order of the deluxe plate of vegetable and mushrooms. 

The restaurant only serves Angus and Kobe beef... to ensure the beef remains tender, the slices should be cooked by dipping it in the boiling broth for 10 seconds or so only. 

Then we dip everything in either one of these 2 dipping bowls.  Similar to the chinese-style hot-pot, they also offer two kinds: ponzu sauce and sesame sauce.  There are other condiments like green onions, carrot paste, and garlic paste.  I prefer adding green onions to the ponzu sauce.  I did not really like the sesame sauce, but C said it went really well with garlic and the spicy miso soup base.

We all agreed that aside from the extra-tender slices of beef, the balls were something to come back for.  The kids just love that the balls came with filling, an extra burst of flavor with every bite.  And unlike other shabu-shabus, this one did not make us leave the restaurant smelling like food.  Not a hint of garlic on my dress that day, so I indulged the kids with some desserts from a nearby cafe.

We stopped at the Sugarhouse for some sweet fix...
New York cheesecake while reading her book of the moment, Divergent

Marjolaine, while playing her fave game on the ipad... something she can't do once the weekend is over.
Can't wait for another weekend.

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Friday, September 28, 2012

Surya Fitness & Yoga

I know I should carry my lazy self off to the gym while the kids are doing laps in the pool... but sitting poolside and chatting away is just so tempting.:)   The past few years, I have found that my body is less able to fight off the unwanted pounds.  I admit defeat; but what the mind desperately wants to do, the uncooperative body is (yet)  not willing to yield.:)

For those of you with more discipline than I do, I urge you to try out Surya Fitness & Yoga. Surya Fitness & Yoga is located on the 4th floor of the Medicard Lifestyle Center in Makati – a wellness center designed with health related concerns in mind and presented in a homey and inviting atmosphere.  The studio is a spacious and welcoming space with lots of beautiful natural light, pleasant breezes and relaxing views. They offer a variety of fitness classes for all levels of experience. Their qualified and nurturing teachers are committed to offering you guidance in the practice of yoga in order to help you achieve better health and well being.

 BASIC YOGA with Corey Wills, every Wednesday at 7am

Puja Fire offering
the locker and shower room
this is the lobby, with a Sugarleaf mini mart offering lavazza coffee
the spacious parking

*Surya offers several yoga classes:  Basic Yoga,Hatha, Vinyasa, Beginner's Ashtanga, and Yin Yang Yoga. 
*Moms looking for a way to nudge their children towards a life of health and fitness, will be delighted to know that the center also offers Stretch & Grow Stretch & Grow is a program designed by child development experts that promotes exercise and wellness for children. Helps develop good eating and fitness habits in order to give kids a healthy foundation to build their future habits, confidence and self esteem.

all photos are from Surya Fitness & Yoga

Surya Fitness & Yoga
Medicard Lifestyle Center
51 Senator Gil Puyat Avenue
Makati City, Philippines
Tel. 02 994 0744 /  878 5122
Mobile 0908 886 4793
Surya Fitness & Yoga on Facebook 

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Monday, September 17, 2012

Mother-Daughter Date at Manos Nail Lounge

I have a pre-teen who just loves having her toe nails done; so when there was a lot of long weekend breaks last August, I decided to take my two girls out on a date, just the three of us.  The boys had their own movie date.
Manos Nail Lounge had a promo at one of the group buying sites; and when I saw the serene-looking photos of the place, I knew it was a good deal for the price.   I bought the Mother-Daughter Pampering Package, (package inclusions:  spa pedicure for the mom, and a Las Manitas (for kids 13 years old and below) mani-pedi with specialty top coat upgrade for the daughters).  
Unlike other nail spas with feminine touches all over, Manos is decorated in a classy Filipino minimalist manner.  Taupe and coffee, with accents of mint decorate the place.   What sets Manos Nail Lounge apart from other nail spas is that it promotes locally sourced products while allowing customers to enjoy ultimate pampering.  There is a small nook near the entrance which displays various eco-friendly local enterprises. 

After J's birthday spa-celebration, this is just B's second time at a nail spa.  Here she is deciding on whether she'd rather have glossy, matte, shatter or glitter for her top-coat.  You have to love how she meticulously pored over her choices!:) seryosong-seryoso!
She finally settles for the glittery one.

this is the cozy seating arrangement directly in front of where we were seated

Our toe nails looking happy!
Manos Nail Lounge
Unit 2-I Crescent Park Residences, 30th St. corner 2nd Ave., Bonifacio Global City
(02) 4784057
Business Hours: M-F 11am to 8pm, Sat & Sun 10:30am to 7pm

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