Friday, October 28, 2011

La Raclette

It's been a week that I've been here now and everything has been going quite well. I am staying for the meantime at my half-sister's house. You see, my dad was married to his first wife when he was in his twenties and had a daughter. His first wife and him divorced after a couple of years and then years later, he married my mother and had me. My sister is in her fifties now and we have a good 20+ plus years age difference, but we've always got quite along well together. Now, she has a teenage daughter and son and both are good kids. Her husband is a good man as well. The past week has been about reminiscing past memories, memories I didn't even remember! We got misty-eyed thinking about the years that have gone by, but nothing really changes - we're still family. 

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Pistachio Ice Cream

I finally got to talk to my 3 year old daughter this morning. It was the first time we had a lengthy talk since I left for France. Strangely, I haven't been missing them much since I got here. I guess that's because my days are filled with things to do to get ready so my husband and daughter can follow after the winter season. I talk to my husband regularly but usually SM is asleep during those times. I was hesitant when she asked to talk to me this morning. Maybe I haven't been crying or missing them all that much because I haven't had long contact. I am still waiting for that huge wave of tears and blues to come and I don't think I am ready for that. But we had a great talk. I showed her around the house I am staying at and she was fascinated with the new environment in my life. Honestly, I don't know where I get my strength from or maybe I am still in denial.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Paintball Memories

Every year my husband’s eldest sister (he has 3 sisters) comes home for her yearly one month vacation back in Cebu. Two years ago, she came back home to get married to her fiance before migrating to the United States. There are not usually a lot of new changes in Cebu every year and if there are we finish them on the first week. So there we were on our second week trying to find out what else we could do new. The prospects looked weak but I told my husband that there are things we definitely haven’t tried ; we just had to look around and ask.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Bonjour de France!

Bonjour! I am finally here in France after 2 days of travelling! The voyage was fun, albeit tiring and challenging. I am now here at my half sister's house in the East area of France and it is freezing cold. A far cry from the heat i used to experience back home in Cebu. The heater is my new best friend - good bye to airconditioning! LOL

The travel was super long and I have lots of little stories I can't wait to share with you. For now let me tell you the highlights. From Cebu, I took a 9 hour flight (Qatar Airways) to Doha, Qatar. My transit in Doha was also about 9 hours but because I have a sister-in-law and brother-in-law there I decided to go out of the airport. I applied and was given a visa upon arrival at the airport (good for 30 days). My brother and sister were already waiting for me and took me out around the city. I managed to sleep a little bit before going back to the airport early morning. I then took my 7 hour fight to Paris, France. In Paris, I took the free airport shuttle to the train station and took the TGV to Lorraine, where my sister and niece were waiting for me. I left Cebu on October 20, 2011 at 6pm and arrived at my final destination on October 21, 2011 at 9pm, but the total travel time took longer than that considering the jet lag.

It felt good to sleep on a bed the whole night through last night - (my sister-in-law let me sleep on her bed in Doha, but we only slept an hour or two). I haven't felt the jet-lag.

My sister is in the process of making a delicious pork roast, so excuse me while I go help her. I'll come back later for more stories of my voyage and the photos.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Qatar Airways: Doha, Qatar - Paris, France

So after barely 2 hours of sleep, my in-laws and I took a ride to Doha airport. Our stay together was indeed too short, but nevertheless I am glad I was able to go out of the airport and see them. I most probably won't be able to see them when they come to Cebu in January so I was happy for the opportunity to see them now. My flight leaving Doha was at 8:30AM and I was sitting down comfortably preparing myself for the rest of the trip - 7 hours.

A Night in Doha, Qatar

First off, let me apologize for the crappy photos. I left my camera in the Philippines with my husband. In the meantime, I am using my iPad to take photos and it takes really crappy photos, especially at night. Seeing that I am in Qatar for one night only, you are in a ride of crappy photos. LOL. Hopefully as soon as I am settled down in France, I can buy myself a nice camera. It's a shame though that I have crappy photos of my stay in Qatar as the place was gorgeous at night. That image I shall keep in my memory. 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Qatar Airways: Cebu, Philippines - Doha, Qatar

I decided to fly to France via Qatar Airways for 3 reasons: it was the cheapest flight rates I could find, my sister and brother-in-law both work in Qatar and I was planning on seeing them if I could, and because they are a widely-known and reputable airline. Despite hearing a lot of good reviews, this was my first time flying with them so I was ready for anything.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Ichiriki Chaya, Cebu

When Dad said that I could pick any restaurant I wanted for my last night in Cebu (as long as the place accepts American Express), all I could think of was "Ichiriki Chaya". A few months ago, my friends and I were supposed to eat dinner there but as we were going to sit down comfortably, I was called to go home because of a family emergency. My friends ate dinner and raved about it - particularly this one dish - and I've been wanting to go back and try it myself.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Oyster Bay @ Bridges Town Square, Mandaue Cebu

So tonight did not exactly go as planned. But that's okay - as long as MR and I are together, we are bound to have a good time.  So the first part was a bust, but we went ahead with the second part and I was in for another surprise. A wonderfully delicious surprise to the eyes and stomach.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Surprise Dinner @ Kaona Grill, Cebu

I thought I was having dinner with my friend KR tonight. She sent me a text message the other day asking me if we could meet up at Kaona Grill (she manages it) and have dinner together before I leave Cebu. So imagine my surprise when I walked in the restaurant looking for KR and saw my 2 close friends (RY and LA), their husband/fiance (DI and WI), my husband (MR), and the kids (SM and EA). I realized that this was a set-up for a surprise goodbye dinner care of my husband. ☺

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Coffee and Coffee Grinders

Recently, I’ve learned to appreciate coffee more. I do frequent coffee shops in Cebu, some known internationally others not. But what really makes a good coffee? This is what I’ve got to learn. And how does one become a coffee connoisseur?  And how do they enjoy their coffee? 

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Capriccio, Lahug Cebu

My friend RY's younger brother just graduated from College and she invited LA and I to the dinner celebration. The dinner took place at Capriccio, the Coffee Resto located in front of Marco Polo Hotel Cebu. I've never been there, so I was interested, but was even more looking forward to spending a little more time with my close friends.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Zubuchon, Escario Cebu

My friend, LI, and I made plans to have lunch together today. I suggested we eat at Zubuchon since I've haven't been there since they opened their 2 branches and I was determined to visit before I left. Thankfully, LI was all for it.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Boiled Shrimps

One of my high school friends (DA) who lives in the States now likes to post photos of the delicious food she cooks at home. I can't help but comment on how good they look and sometimes ask how she makes it. And then one day, I received a personal message from her with her own original recipe for Boiled Shrimps. I always get a kilo of shrimps every time I go grocery shopping so it was only a matter of time before I try her masterpiece.

Dimsum Break's Beef Rice @ BTC, Cebu

The weather in Cebu has been ridiculous. It's sunny one minute and then the next it's raining really hard. Today - for example. When I brought SM to school, it was sunny and super hot and then when we had our lunch, it started raining really hard. So hard that we couldn't make it to the car and had to wait for a while. Thankfully, we weren't in a hurry as we were still busy having our lunch. The first part of lunch was a Ciabatta Sandwich from Yellow Cab and the second part of lunch was Dimsum Break's Beef Rice.

Yellow Cab's Early Breads - Ciabatta: Ham, Salami, Cheese, and Scrambled Egg @ BTC, Cebu

Because I'm leaving in a couple of days, I am taking great pleasure bringing and picking up SM to school every day. Since she started school, it's always been me, my husband, or the both of us who brought her to school. But these days, there's a deeper feeling. I don't know how it's going to feel breaking my routine of bringing and picking her from school, but I don't want to think about that. For now, I just want to think about the lunch we had today.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Tower Burger @ KFC, Parkmall Cebu

Don't judge me, but I ate way tooooo much tonight! I knew we would be full with the chicken, but I begged MR to get a Tower Burger too so I could feature it here. He reluctantly agreed as long as we shared the burger. This is the second time we've had this burger, but unfortunately I wasn't able to take photos before. We loved it and I've been itching to it feature here so I took this opportunity to do just that before I leave.

Delivery: KFC, Parkmall Cebu

Whenever a special holiday or event comes up, you are guaranteed that the fast food chains will pick up its theme to incorporate in their promos. So what happens at the end of October? Halloween!!! A celebration which was already quite enjoyable when I was growing up (thanks to the CIS Halloween Fair), but is growing to be quite popular. The only day of the year where you can wear whatever costume fancies you and ask for free sweets - why wouldn't this be popular, right? ☺

Sister's Best Cafeteria @ Perpetual Succour Hospital, Cebu

When October comes it means that it's time for me to have a mammogram done. My late mother was diagnosed with breast cancer at a very young age, so the moment I turned 18 years old, her oncologist (a family friend) recommended that I have an annual mammogram done. Like they say, early detection is the key. 

I'm leaving soon....

It's final. I bought my plane ticket. I am leaving on the 20th of this month. A lot of people have objected on this move, especially since I am going alone first, but I can do it. I CAN DO IT!!!                        

So the countdown beings.....10 days!!!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Buffet-Style: Mikado @ Mahogany Court, Cebu

When I came home and bragged about my cooking class and making Ebi and Ika Fry, MR and Dad decided they were in the mood for some Tempura.  I was still full from the food I had earlier at Ramen Kamekichi, but I told them I'd go with them. So where do we go to eat unlimited Ebi Tempura? Mikado, that's where! ☺

Cooking Class at Ramen Kamekichi, Cebu

About a month and a half ago, I stumbled on this Facebook page offering Japanese cooking class here in Cebu and a mutual friend asked me if I would be interested. I thought to myself, "what a neat idea", but I was still a little hesitant. And then I looked at the name of the establishment who was doing this, Ramen Kamekichi. Personally, I find that Ramen Kamekichi has the best Ramen in town. Because of that, I was sold and honestly quite excited!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Yellow Cab Pizza, BTC Cebu

When LA and her fiance, WI, offered to buy us pizza for dinner tonight, we all agreed it was a good idea. LOL. I would NEVER pass on free food. hehehe. ☺ Although I am in BTC on a weekly basis, we rarely ever eat at Yellow Cab Pizza so it was a nice change. And it was a nice way to end the day which included cooking, eating, gossiping, making sales at the garage sale, bringing SM to school, waiting for her, having plain fun, and playing cards with friends. It honestly doesn't get much better than that for me. ☺

Friday, October 7, 2011

Ham and Cheese Sandwich

My close friend, RY, and her son spent the day and night in our house. Her son, EA, is my Godson and of same age as my daughter, SM. It is a joy to see the two of them playing together and running around the house. It is even better with RY here as we can have non-stop chatting moments. We tried to man the garage sale and sell our items, but ultimately we concluded my husband, MR, is the man! LOL So we usually just ended up talking or eating. LOL.

Garage Sale - Day 2 & 3

The garage sale has been doing quite good. I had no idea that so many people would find our stuff that interesting. Even things I put up for the sake of putting up got picked up right away. I've also invited two of my friends to sell their stuff too and it's been fun bonding with them. ☺

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Garage Sale - Day 1

Today marks the FIRST DAY of our garage sale. We have a lot of used and new things for sale. Stuff you might be interested in. ☺

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Delivery: Yellow Cab Pizza, BTC Cebu

We might as well have picked up dinner when we were at Banilad Town Center earlier, but I had no idea that MR wanted to eat a pizza tonight. We ordered from Yellow Cab Pizza in BTC. Based from previous experience, I asked the woman on the phone if they had a delivery motorcycle available tonight because the last time we ordered for delivery the delivery man came by foot and I felt really bad. But I was assured that he would use a delivery motorcycle tonight and I was relieved.

Yo-Go Boy, BTC Cebu

I picked up SM from her class this afternoon. Naturally, she asked me for her afternoon snacks and we decided on a cup of frozen yogurt from Yo-Go Boy. I'm glad they have regular buyer card as I'm close to claiming my free cup of Yo-Go Boy soon. ☺

Monday, October 3, 2011

Chicken Adobo with Eggs

The pressure is on! I finally made the events page for the Garage Sale we're having in Facebook and I've already been getting personal and text messages. It's not as much as I'd hoped for but I remain positive. But most of all, I just really want to bond with my family and friends. As I'm typing this right here, MR is in the process of gathering everything we're gonna sell and take photos so I can post them online as a preview/teaser. Tomorrow we will start setting up the tables in the yard!  aahhhhhhh 2 more days to go! Can you spell E-X-C-I-T-E-D?!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Shabu-Way, Parkmall Cebu

Two reasons why we left the Philippine Fire Festival  was that it was already 9:00PM (which was the time it was supposed to end, but the show started really late!) and we were very hungry! SM had a cup of fries to munch on but we had nothing and our stomachs were getting impatient.

1st Philippine Fire Festival @ Parkmall, Cebu

The 1st Philippine Fire Festival was supposed to start at 7:00PM, but at 7:00PM nothing was happening. The organizers were still getting everything prepared to start the show. So we sat down to have sure seats and waited and waited. The event was held at the Piazza of Parkmall Cebu and the place was slowly packing up. The music was super loud and honestly made waiting even harder. But minutes past 8:00PM, the show was finally ready to start.

Food Stall: Potato Corner, Parkmall Cebu

I dragged my husband, daughter, and dad to watch the First Philippine Fire Festival in Parkmall with me. On the way there, we agreed we would also buy a gift for a neighbor's son and eat dinner after the show. When we arrived, the preparations for the festival was underway and most seats were empty. But I knew they would quickly get occupied, so Dad offered to sit and save us seats while we went inside and bought the gift.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Ssshhh I've got a secret to tell you.

Hi Everyone! ☺

There's something I've been secretly keeping from you for a couple of months now. Something I am finally ready to share with you. Here it goes.

Jazz Night at the Lobby of Radisson Blu, Cebu

When SM had her studio photoshoot  a couple of weeks ago, there was a free Cebu magazine on the counter and I asked if I could keep a copy for myself. I went through it at home and read that there is Jazz Night every Friday and Saturday night at the lobby of the Radisson Blu Cebu. I was excited to bring Dad as he loves Jazz Music, but I forgot about it because of our busy schedule. And then about a week or two later, I read the same ad at a local newspaper and I knew we had to go asap.

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