The Month of the Heart of Winter

the new leaf of January is my Month!

Tag Archives: coffee lover

so, where were we here?

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Oh the sista’s 30 something birthday. Uhm, during her birthday weekend we went to Divi Market to rally around like the throng of Pinoy shoppers who loves bargains, huge discounts and what else the happiness of shopping spree without selling your kidneys. 😀 But because it was a Saturday, almost always a market day for everyone, the crowd was like a nightmare, there were people everywhere and you can’t even get something out of your bag readily. You’re pushed to walk and walk giving you not much time to lurk over pieces of those P20 items or those 3 for P100 items which in a way can pass as a nice Christmas present with the right paper wrapper and ribbon. We didn’t really stay long at Juan Luna even if Nanay felt like spending more time, after haggling for fruits and veggies we headed right away at the comfort of the air-conditioned Lucky Chinatown Mall nearby, besides it rained that day so we had no choice but to cover and feed ourselves because we’re famished with all the sweats and stinky smell of the surrounds, don’t get me wrong I love Divi by all means but not during this season.

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So, the supposed Chinese-y lunch was discarded and we went to Max’s for some comfort food –spring chicken, lumpiang ubod, sizzling tofu, macaroni salad and tocino, yes, SAM and I didn’t let the chance go by without sampling the breakfast fare, our favorite breakfast chow to be exact.

Going home that day was the next challenge, Leoncio was supposed to pick us up but seeing the horrible traffic I panicked (ok, a bit only), it would be a waste of time and energy and gas. So, I thought that GrabTaxi was the only savior that day, thank God for zero booking fees. Wee! 🙂 It wasn’t too hard to grab one because it didn’t took long for me to get a unit, however, it took us like forever waiting for him when in fact he’s already at Jones Bridge and we already walked like halfway of Quintin Paredes St. so we could meet halfway. Traffic was that horrible and annoying. Don’t mind to ask how much it cost from Divi to Mandaluyong, it was like more than double because it was clogged everywhere, even the side streets. I somehow pity the cab driver especially that he remained calm the entire trip despite the bottleneck. Arriving home, we felt drained so instead of getting ready for our next activity we slept the entire afternoon. Good thing that the weather was colder now because they didn’t complain much about the humid Manila weather.

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Next, by 6pm we’re heading to Ayala Center, we stopped at Rustan’s Supermarket first to have a quick snack but ended eating a lot of sushi, sandwich, salad and fresh fruits. Rustan’s Gourmet-To-Go is Love!  ♥

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I needed to buy the kid’s Chuck Taylor because I’m running out of time. The next few weeks will be even busier with commitments here and there. And because I felt a bit generous or I maybe I just thought it’s always nicer to give than to receive , I bought 4 pairs of that old-school Chuck Taylor for SAM, Pao, Ysa and Che. I almost fainted seeing the bill because it means I have to cut some of my personal luxuries for the coming weeks. Hay! Kayo na ang naka-terno ng shoes this Christmas…we didn’t skipped the recently opened H&M in SM Makati, the 3rd branch to open this year and most likely would be my most frequent branch amongst. I was supposed to buy Ysa’s dress but the styles were so-so, we ended up with that denim blue overall which was too perfect for our little girl. I got her a hooded jacket too. And Nanay a knit-sweater to appease her gloomy mood because she had no size of that studded sandals. And some few pieces of gift item for my goddaughters. I’m almost penniless that day after exiting the mall, it was like I was robbed but what money can’t buy was the happiness of those people close to my heart. They’re happy I know. 🙂

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And as if we’re contended of just spending the next day at home, we drove to Paseo de Santa Rosa in the afternoon to beat another traffic jam and to shop whatever was lacking –shoes for Leoncio, dress for Ysa, pants for Pao and to delight my eyes with all that gorgeous looking tops from the favorite outlet shop. Found It! But was too hesitant to take home that Christmas-white top because it was way my budget but I really love it and I’m hoping someone could get it for me, please, my size is 16. We didn’t have too much time and we have to skip the Christmas bazaar near Nuvali, after a quick dinner at Kenny Rogers we drove home. All I was able to take out was the corn muffins and Japanese corn, I feel so deprived and kawawa! 😦

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Even our “special pup” at home is looking forward to Christmas Day! 😛

The following work week was gruesome and will be more gruesome especially that year end and Q4 is nearing, there were also issues hanging around but hey, no one is stopping Christmas and the rush and all the preparations, and parties and get-togethers, and more expenses. Christmas would always be that one time of the year when I feel so energized despite of all the chaos (counting here the ominous atmosphere at the work place) that may pop in.

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By the way, we were home again last weekend, we had coffee on Saturday night, Tagaytay was so cold already. The following day, Leoncio and I went on some we-time as we hit Tagaytay by ourselves alone, no rush Sunday –coffee, Mahogany market, cheap gas.

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Also, I went to SGAAA (alumni association) on Saturday to see my groupie and to plan more for our very own batch Christmas party. It was nice to be back at the alma matter only that the alumni activity was quite sickening for me because I find it disorganized, I hope they’ll be able to pull out a good team soon because the grand alumni should be seamless and all.

Oh and before I forgot, someone came at the parental house last Saturday morning, swear to God that I didn’t recognize him, I thought he’s someone from the barangay who’s asking for financial support or whatever, you know my Nanay is becoming the savior of these pesky people who’s thinking is we have this money tree of sort that anytime they need to they can easily run to her. When all but my sister and I assumed he’s just one of them, we were very wrong! I know I haven’t written any of him here because he was part of my past, naks! 25 years ago? Let’s go back a bit of high school, he was my one and only crush because he was cool and stylish, talk about new wave and he’s everything it! 😀 I even remember attending Sunday mass regularly because he’s there. And because he knew I crushed him he even sent me a letter way, way back, ok not the love letter I expected, it was sort of a friendly letter only, which I kept for years. Though for sometime it kept me wondering also that maybe some of my friends forced him to do it.  Even after finishing high school, I still find him cute? I still crush him until I found some cute college boys at the university. And by the time I landed a decent job in Makati I’m completely over him because I was crazy infatuated with Ely B. But what puzzle me now, what happened to him? What happened to the boy I crushed for a long time? Of course, he became a man, he became a husband and a father, only that life wasn’t too friendly for him, maybe because he too has his own time lag, he let go of the good opportunities, if ever there were. Maybe he made none-sense of his life during the early years and wasted too much on something, maybe he didn’t treasure people around him that’s why he’s left alone now. Really, I have no idea of what had happen to him and I’m no longer interested to know as well but it bothers me a bit because he looks so old and grimy, no trace of his being in good shape before. I somehow pity the guy this time but I leave everything to God now, may he find his soul back on track. Well, on a side note, I wonder now if he feel a bit of regret after seeing me, bakit naman kase naka-pajama pa ako when he saw me eh, he should had seen me in my boyfriend jeans and my newly ironed-curls later that day, I bet he’d feel more sorry of himself. Ikaw kase eh! Oh well, life is roller coaster and the world is very small so the chance of bumping with people in the past is very probable. He left soon after Nanay handed him a little cash, what a shame? 😦

So what do you know, this forthcoming weekend is very special, Leoncio and I will be marking our 9th wedding anniversary. There is one solid plan to date and I hope it would push without any holdup. And just in case I won’t be able do the anniversary post because I’m busy and drained by then, here’s something for you my dear husband.

Our 9th year came too fast, I was like doodling and dawdling and before I knew it another 365 days of our married life went by. I have many things to thank God this year, foremost, because He gave you a new job at the start of the year and He continued to bless me everyday at work despite the challenges, despite the frustration everytime I’ll receive my paycheck. But despite that little earnings this year, we never felt deprived, we were able to shop to our heart’s content, we were able to dine at our favorite restaurants and we were able to make short distance travels by and by. I thank God that we remained hale and hearty except to some flu and gastric disorders. I thank God that we survived the journey, even childless at this point, we never felt incomplete and miserable.

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‘Ney, I know in my heart we have a long way to go, we have too many more battle to win and we have too many roads to travel. And let me take this chance to say sorry for the many times I yelled at you for no big reasons at all, for the many times I ignored you, for the many times I acted egotistic, for the many times I excused myself doing the laundry and the dishes and for the many times you felt I put you down. You just don’t know how much I love you and how I value us, that waking up with YOU everyday is my only bliss. Happy Anniversary ‘Ney and may God continue to shower our marriage with trust, faith, loyalty and constancy. 

 

saturday the 13th

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After a not-so happy lunch at Uncle Cheffy we drove to S & R to check the Early Bird Sale, we spent a good two hours or more and ended up with only one fourth cart filled with chips, spread, laundry detergents and ring cakes which were sold buy one take one. I wanted to bring home bacons and cheese but Dadi wasn’t really on it because he finds it pricey compared to our new staple at home –Pampanga’s Best BBQ ribs and that we still had a good stack of cheese so he thought. I was drooling to bring home a Kirkland chocolate almond jar or a big pack of acai berries but it was too much for a splurge on a normal weekend. Anyhow, that Jules Destrooper Speculoos and Dulce de Leche spread was love. ♥

I love S & R but only second to Rustan’s Marketplace. On our way out we were held back of the heavy downpour, it was a bit unexpected. The rain was extended, when we got the chance we drove away from S & R and went ahead to BHS Central to get our coffee fix. We love Starbucks by all means but we’re always open to trying out other coffee players in town, the new ones especially.

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At the new building of Boni Central is Marks & Spencer Food, yes a food shop with all their best-tasting cookies and chocolates, apart from it was a coffee counter and its wide selection of pastries and breads. I had latte and Dadi had his Americano, we got a chocolate cookie and a decent looking bread of my choice, I forgot its name. The coffee was good but not that something you’ll go back again and again. It was fine. This is another out of topic segway, while waiting for Dadi outside of the café there’s this familiar handsome face that emerged from somewhere, I was holding my breath and waiting for his ka-HHWW to appear in limelight. I figured. It was none other than the fiancée, the Aussie Dyosa of all –si Anne Curtis! I was literally starstrucked for the first time. I felt I wanted to move but couldn’t, I want to say hi but I was blank, it took me some few seconds to finally recover and feel overly happy and excited. I never thought I was a real fan of Anne until then; she was so pretty and looks so nice in person. She was like a kolehiyala who was so kilig with her handsome date that night. 🙂 Even those passersby were stunned for a while before they finally reckoned and blurted out their excitement –sabi na eh si Erwan un! There were some who can’t just hide away their kilig and ran to catch the two, I wonder if they succeed.

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While we remained still and sipped our coffee to kill time, the rain outside was heavier and stronger this time. The looming typhoon was moving erratically and it feared us somehow, you know how the recent typhoons had hit the city badly, that even a rammasun can be so powerful and destructive. But because Dadi had work again the following day, we head home by 10pm. A bit weary except that we remained wary on the road.

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Killing time is pretending we’re on a different continent and video calling is our way to alleviate the homesickness 😀

The drive from Taguig to Mandaluyong was dripping wet; I was suspecting that some road maybe flooded by now including the paved parking space Winnie will be left overnight. I worried for our 14-year old wagon. By the time we arrived in Mandaluyong some part of the street was already ankle deep but we still found a rather safer ground for Winnie. I was a bit relieved. A few minutes more after settling down at home I heard voices calling Dadi, I was alarmed and even before I could mutter any, “ney binangga daw si Winnie” –that was it! My worries all came back and I had to calm myself after seeing our trusty car, wrecked and all. I felt sad, I felt sorry and I felt annoyed at the same time. I was yelling at the driver and even to the barangay tanods who initially responded. As if the story ended there, we all trooped to the barangay hall and for the first time in many years we got ourselves into this mess, an accident that we were not really involved. It’s been three weeks now and we’re still talking to the insurance agency, to these perpetrators for Winnie’s damages, I know it’s a long run and heaps of patience is needed.

As this happen, I feel helpless, hopeless and worthless for reckless drivers, they’re these societies killer on the road. I hope there’s a stronger law suit for reckless driving so every driver will be cautious enough.

 

the coffee bean & tea leaf

Jun 7.  Because we’ve been partial to Starbucks coffee and dessert we had this tendency to revisit and revisit thus the idea of dining at a different coffee shop was always somewhere off the topic. But since our current fixations are pasta and salads we keep our options open this time. 🙂

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We keep on passing by Coffee Bea and Tea Leaf in Salcedo Village for the longest time, and everytime we do I can’t help but adore its peaceful ambiance, well on weekends perhaps and I can’t attest if it’s the same scenery during the week days. I love it even from afar because the place doesn’t get too overly crowded, there’s always an empty seat for diners.

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Well, I’m slowly morphing back to becoming a coffee addict despite the acid attacks and palpitation but there’s no need to worry, I know my limits and there’s always this alternative to coffee and tea –the fruity flavored drink? But once at the coffee shop I can’t hold back myself not to order a coffee blended drink, I think it’s a bit odd not to order coffee at all. During our visit at CBTL, we had dinner first, a lighter one (I guess), we had our usual favorite combination –a classic Caesar salad and sardine pasta. Yep, we can survive eating that combi everyday –fresh and tasty and warm?

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Coffee Bean’s Classic Caesar Salad® Everybody’s favorite! You can also opt to enjoy this traditional salad made of romaine lettuce, croutons, eggs & Caesar dressing with chicken. We got ours less the chicken.

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Sardine & Garlic Linguine. An olive oil-based pasta with Spanish-style sardines and roasted garlic. Garnished with parmesan cheese and parsley. I super, super love this because the garlic is crunchy and the sardine is super tasty. And because the serving is big it’s good for sharing, value for your money here. I’d probably go back for this pasta dish!

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CBTL cakes and pastries are very hard to resist, I can’t passed over to that Chicago Cheesecake. It’s not the usual cheesecakes you’d find around, that’s too foamy and soft or sweet, CBTL’s cheesecake had that perfect texture.  From now on, I’m declaring it as one of my must-try cheesecakes in town. ♥

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Chicago Cheesecake. Velvety cream cheese with a hint of lemony tartness, on a subtle almond cookie crust – best with Espresso.

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The cookie monster husband would always get a small or big piece of cookie to pair his coffee. He had the Café Americano –one of his usual requests. While I had the ice blended one, Mocha if I remember it right. Hehehe. I love my drink only that it’s too filling, probably because of its heavy cream.

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Ice Blended Mocha. Mocha lovers, you’ll be in heaven… Our delectable Special Dutch™ Chocolate and Coffee Extract blended with ice and non-fat milk.

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The next time we’ll visit I’ll try the All Day Breakfast –Eggs Ben, Bagel, Salmon Scramble, I can’t wait! 😀

 

 

The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf
Ground Floor, Four Seasons Salcedo (at Tordesillas St & Toledo St) 
Makati City     
T. +63 2 8172873
 

sundate no.27 + moki’s 25th

If I can find the same opportunity back in my hometown I’ll probably think twice this time and consider living in the south, for good. Maybe it’s the added consequence of being old; you want to spend more time with the family and with people that matters most including the unfriendly neighborhood. Hehehe. Seriously, I always look forward to driving home on weekends other than the husband’s work schedule is not permitting us this time. He works 6-days a week and holidays are not spared, so every time we’re home we make the most out of it no matter what.

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Apr 13. The kids love it when I’m home because Sunday means going out, and eating out, and coffee dates and if there’s extra budget our little big boy can laze at Timezone or Sky Ranch and play. During Palm Sunday, we brought the kids at McDonald’s for a nice change from the usual Starbucks routine. Tho they’re more accustomed to Jollibee, because Jollibee’s store is nearby, our love affair with McDonald’s remains big even if we have to drive a little far off more. McDonald’s has always been a good stop, my family loves McDonald’s including my two B’s.

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Timely to our visit was McDonald’s newest offer, the BFF Bundles which was basically designed for sharing. If you have seen the commercial, you’d probably raving and loving it by now. It’s one of those McDonald’s commercials that’s worth seeing and hearing over and over again. The #BetterTogether campaign was a nice move from McDonald’s and Coca-Cola because it promotes happiness, friendship and shared moments in the real world, meaning minus the gadgets and everything digital that makes us busy during meals.

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We got the BFF Burger Bundle because we all heart burgers ♥, and our personal choices were the Big Mac (for Kuya P & Leoncio), McChiken for Ate SAM and McDouble Deluxe for me. I don’t know with you but the two huge serving of BFF fries were too much, I think. We ended finishing one only.

Its P599 price (bundle for 4) is value for your money ONLY if you’re all getting Big Mac under the BFF Burger Bundle, apart from it I don’t find its worth to stuff yourself with fries. Nakakalunod ang fries, promise! 😀

The day before this sundate with the kids, I had a busy day off.  But despite the many errands and activity that day I enjoyed every minute of it because I was home and around.sundate no.27_5

I was able to spend time with my adorable B, I had the chance to do her bathe again after missing it many times. The househelps had been doing the odd job ever since B started living with the parentals, tho occasionally the husband would take turns doing this when we’re home. B loves the water but hated being bathed and that explains her unhappy face when these photos were taken. My big baby is going to be mommy again, oh my!

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My cousin Moki was celebrating his 25th also that day so we went at their house to celebrate in the afternoon.

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I love occasions with the maternals because it gives me that sense of belonging. Tho we have issues and small rifts at times it never put any scar to the close knit we have. Blood remains to be thicker than water for us and I wish it would stay that way forever and ever. 😛

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It’s a habit also that when there’s an occasion we’ll squeeze a little after party of our own. The birthday boy wasn’t able to join us because he still had visitors at home and we ploy them also that we’re going Las Pinas, that far that’s why even my cousin Irish didn’t bother to join up. 😀 Little did they know we’ll just laze around Tagaytay and have coffee and a little fun?

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My dearest cousin JB went with us. JB is one of my closest cousins in our pack because we’re just of the same age (ehem) and we grew up together and he’s ever comical persona makes a perfect company at all times. Seriously, he’s presence will be missed once they totally migrated to the land of milk and honey. Aw!

 

seattle’s best coffee

Before the long break, the Holy Week that was, I’ve been on a busier sched, I was juggling between work and my household (as if I have a dozen of kids at home), so whenever we have the luxe of time to go out even if it was a weekday we’ll give it a go, besides the red-hot temperature was a good excuse for me not to cook, I hate sweating in the first place. Take me to Arendelle Castle so I can meet Elsa and froze, the cold never bothered me anyway! 🙂

One of our unplanned dinner date happened on Holy Monday, I was running after to use my discount voucher at Old Navy so we drove to BGC. The remaining voucher I had was nearly expiring I suspect esp that it’s almost a month since its opening day and that it’s a promotion thing only, so I’m not letting it perished just like that, it must be utilized. 😛 After a really quick peeped around Old Navy and shopping for new flip flops I heard my tummy growled. It’s like telling me I’m hungry sarcastically, just like that Lenovo guy whom I hate for his very disdainful remarks and comments. Hahaha. Anyhow, because it’s a week day most stores and restaurants closes early in Boni High so our choices were trimmed to coffee shops that normally stays open until past midnight.

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Not that I’m tired of eating sandwiches at Starbucks other than I wanted a slight change that night and Seattle’s Best was the best option, me thinks. 🙂 Because they have more than pastries and dessert, they have light meals and even breakfast plate to proffer, that’s a weakness and I’m all in.

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We opted for the light meals, which in my judgment wasn’t really light because the serving was quite huge and filling, coming from a big eater like me you should trust me here. Seattle’s Best light meals are pasta, sandwiches, salad and paninis. We got ourselves the pasta dishes because we feel like eating it that time, if you’d been following this blog and my IG account we’ve been eating pasta more than the regular meal these days because we feel its lighter than the usual combo of rice and meat or chicken, we feel it’s a little healthier tho it’s not really recommended esp on late nights, note to self: the calories from pasta is highly prone to settle around your waist. Now that explains the husband’s Pooh-belly, and that makes me Piglet. Hehehe.

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I got the Amatriciana. Linguine pasta tossed with a tomato-based sauce and sautéed bacon slices, topped with parmesan cheese. Served with two slices of wheat bread. It tasted fresh tho a little salty probably because of the generous portion of bacon slices which makes this a traditional Italian pasta.

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It’s Pesto for the husband. Inspired by fresh basil, this pesto pleaser is sprinkled with parmesan cheese, chopped walnut and fresh parsley. Served with two slices of wheat bread. I love that it’s not too oily and too strong for my taste, it’s just right.

I’m not really a frap person, I’d always go for the hot variety but you see the sweltering Manila climate is killing me and my baby fats 😀 so I paired my pasta with something cold and rich.

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Mocha Javakula.Our deliciously rich classic mocha blended with ice and generously covered with whipped cream. I’ll be hypocrite if I won’t say that I love it better than Starbucks fraps, it’s smooth and not too sweet at all. While the husband enjoyed his Americano, the classic brew that is bold and traditional.

This to self and to people who have been inquest of a justifiable reason: I love the fact that we can date even on week days, I love the fact that we have nothing to worry at home, we’re childless and yes we have a myriad reasons and selfishness isn’t one of them so please excuse us. At times it’s almost irritating when everyone we knew would peppered us with the kid question, and I would simply smile and turn my back. I wish I could just exactly say “I don’t want a kid” to end their inquiry. It’s a personal choice and we don’t live in a vacuum for all ye know. 🙂

 

 

Seattle’s Best Coffee
Bonifacio High Street
City Center Quadrant 3
9th Avenue, Global City
Taguig City
T. 632 856-4527 / 856-4528