Our Real Living Makeover

If you read this post last month, I hope I inspired you to join the makeover contest of Real Living. A lot of people tell me I am very lucky when it comes to contests. In a way, that may be true. What I want to think is that I win because I try. Hard. I don’t have many desires but when I want something, I commit. For this makeover contest, I read the stories of past winners.  I took photos of my house and had the pictures developed. I wrote and rewrote and rewrote my entry. And then, I commuted from Paranaque to Ortigas to handcarry my entry to Summit Media. When I learned that our house was shortlisted, I planned for the ocular inspection by rehearsing how to “sell” our house and by baking chocolate chip cookies in the morning (which RL team was not able to taste because they came early). Now, was I really just lucky? Continue reading

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I Won A Makeover from Real Living!

Just when I thought that this summer is so uneventful, I got an SMS that made my heart palpitate! Real Living, the number one home magazine in the country, was considering my house for their monthly makeover contest. Golly gee!

Everything happened so fast. I got that SMS May 11. May 13, they did an ocular. May 14, we learned that we were chosen. May 18, we had the the “before” shoot and meeting with the interior designer. Renovation started last May 21. May 29, last Friday, we had the “after” photoshoot.

Please grab a copy of the July issue as soon as it is out.

So why I am I posting this?

Because you too can win! Real Living is accepting entries until June 19.  You may handcarry your entry or send it via snail mail or courier.

Read the full mechanics here

May the odds be on your favor! Good luck!

…And We Ate Happily Ever After

That is the story of my life for the first quarter of the year.

I worked in the kitchen and enjoyed the fruits of my labor afterwards.I gained only 2 pounds because I ate healthy during weekdays and feasted on weekends.

Same thing on the work-front. I have worked on double shifts for at least 4 times last quarter. On some days, you win. On some days, you learn. I work hard on weekdays but make sure that weekends are for family.

Going back, some of my finished products. How I wish I have time to document how I tweaked the recipes and how easy/intimidating/frustrating/surprising/laborious the cooking process was. Since I don’t have the luxury of time, please refer to the links and modify as needed. Continue reading

Protect Your Family Said the Pope

Hello hello hello!

Is it just me or  is every 1 out 5 people that I know getting sick nowadays? That includes me. I have not been able to report to work for 2 days. The very moment that I sneezed, I knew immediately that I caught my officemate’s virus. As soon as I got home, I drank ginger tea and gargled warm water with salt. On the next day, I was semi okay. Wednesday was a different story. Today, Thursday, I decided to rest (yesterday I worked from home).  Thank you God for the gift of healing.

Moving on to another topic, what did you do during the long Papal weekend? Although we live close to Villamor, we chose to stay home. The pope said, “Protect your family.” If  protecting means praying, preparing for the future, nurturing, prioritizing health, and spending quality time with your family, we did just what the pope said.

First thing we did on the first day of the long weekend, was meet our financial advisor, Efren Cruz. Click here to read our past posts about insights that we gained from him. Financially, so many things have happened since we first met Efren in 2012. We paid off our Pag-ibig loan. I got promoted. Franco moved to an insurance company with great benefits. We just want to check if our finances are in order. Continue reading

2014 Christmas Decors

I am always amazed when I see houses fully decked inside and out with Christmas decors. The first question that comes to mind is “Where do they store all these after the holidays?!”. We live in a house that is just right size for our small family. Not big, not small but storage space is always a problem. In fact, our third room, the supposed guestroom, was converted into a dressing room slash bodega.

And so when the holiday season rolls in, I just choose which spaces needs to be decorated. I don’t have the time, storage space and budget to holida-fy  our whole little home. This year, I chose the corner under the stairs and bookshelves. I already shared the Christmas trees and books. Let me share how our shelves looked like. Continue reading

Before and After: Toilet Ring

 

 

One of the things that I wanted to tackle during my medical leave was the awful toilet ring that haunted me for months. Had I posted this months earlier, I would have remembered what exactly we did, the order, how long we let products sit. But in case it might help, here are the products that we used on the toilet bowl until we finally erased the ring

1. Coke. Let sit overnight. I think we did this twice.

2. Lemonade juice powder. I read somewhere that the acids of citrus drinks can loosen grime

3. Oxalyc crystals. If they can remove rust on our clothes, maybe they’d work on the toilet too

4. Baking soda. We all know that baking soda has magic cleaning powers. For a month now, I stopped using shampoo and started using baking soda to clean my hair and scalp. Girl scout promise, my hair fall problem vanished just after one washing.

I really wanted to use natural and non-conventional product but I later on surrendered and used commercial cleansers because we were still not achieving the whiteness that I wanted. Continue reading

Chinese-Style Steamed Fish Recipe

If you are looking for an effective diet, look no further. South Beach is the one for you. I swear by my index toe, it really works. From 129 pounds, I was down to 117 lbs with minimal to zero exercise. That is just one pound away from my pre-Aki weight. And it is not expensive as many of you think. If you prepare your own food, the cost is just the same.

Baked tomatoes with honey mustard dressing, oven-roasted squash,my go-to cookbooks, home-made mint pesto (yummmmm!) Continue reading

Almost Perfect Fridate

Happy Thursday!  Weekend is almost here.

Some days are good. Some days are bad. Some are almost perfect. The last Friday of July is one of those almost perfect days.

We started the day with a prayer. This was the week when we decided that we will pray the rosary on our way to work.  Instead of me mobile surfing and Franco getting hot-headed because of rude drivers on the road, we spend 15-minutes meditating on the life of Jesus and Mary.

Continue reading

Chicken Wings Partey for Daddey

Two weekends ago, I once again proved my undying love and devotion to my husband. I don’t eat chicken. Seeing raw chicken parts makes me want vomit. But because it was his special day, Ate Doring and I slaved in the kitchen the whole day, preparing 5 chicken wing dishes. In the morning, Aki and I made memories as we baked a chocolate birthday cake. Continue reading

Prayer for our Husbands’ Protection

Do you have a copy of the Power of the Praying Wife book? If you don’t, you should get one ASAP. I bought mine from National Bookstore for PhP550.  Small price for something that can do wonders in our lives. The book is divided into 30 easy-to-read chapters. Each chapter is dedicated to an aspect of our husbands’ lives that we ought to pray for e.g. finances, sexuality, fatherhood, emotions, faith etc.

 

Today, I want to share one of my favorite prayers from this book.  My dad died a day after his birthday. He was out with friends. It was raining and the roads were slippery. I also heard that the driver was quite drunk.  My dad, who always sat on the passenger seat, agreed to sit on the back for some reason. The driver and the friend who sat beside him, survived the car crash. My dad was not as lucky. I can’t imagine how my mom felt and reacted after hearing the news. I was only 2 and my sister was only 10 months old.  And this is why, I get semi-paranoid when Franco tells me he is going out with friends.  This prayer is for our husbands’ protection. We can shield them from danger 24/7 but God can. Continue reading