Pretty little things



We received a package filled with pretty little things for Lily.


It was a box full of lovely grosgrain ribbon bows from Ethel Bernales of Celestina & Co.


My girls have been wearing Celestina & Co for a while now. Her pieces are so well made and fairly priced.


They have headbands, clips, bows and other pretty accessories for little girls.


In addition to the classic bows, they have characters and other garden symbols like these. That butterfly bow is just P115.


Check out Celestina & Co. here.



Gluten-free vanilla cupcakes



I really love my new kitchen. Since it started operating, I think I have improved my cooking skills. I should say, at least I have increased my interest in cooking and baking. I’m not yet brave enough to show you photos or share recipes. Perhaps one day…

Yesterday the kids and I baked cupcakes. Now I won’t pretend to be Martha Stewart. I’ve used boxed bake mixes. Hey, I like to keep our lives simple. But lately I haven’t been seeing Betty Crocker, Duncan Hines and other brands on the shelves. I haven’t seen any of those canned frosting either.  Then I saw Stonewall Kitchen‘s gluten-free Vanilla Cupcakes (mix) in Rustan’s and decided to give it a try.


Baking gluten free vanilla cupcakes with Lily.
Lily and I waited 20 minutes for the cupcakes to rise. The mix instructions are easy. Just add butter and egg. So if you are allergic to dairy, this isn’t for you. Please look for substitutes.


Waiting for our vanila cupcakes to cool. Then we frost. #vanillacupcakes
Lily chose from our pretty cupcake liners. We have a huge collection (because I love to acquire them). These are from my sister Johanna in Toronto. Here they are waiting to cool. Note, the vanilla part smells so good! The entire house was salivating…


Finished product by Soph, Lily & Stella. Food colouring freaks me out. But boy, did we have fun mixing them.
The frosting mix comes in powder form. You have to add milk and butter then blend. It’s all white. My kids have been watching a lot of Nerdy Nummies (she is awesome!) and told me that it’s easy to turn the frosting into different colours. Lo and behold I just happened to have food colouring in my pantry (have no idea why). And we came up with purple and pink! The sprinkles were purchased in Toronto but they’re all over baking stores here in Manila.


The verdict? YUMMY! All three kids loved it. My brother in law who is trying to have a gluten-free diet loved it! Patrick and I loved it. I’m buying more!

Lily’s party



Lilys Logo


Lily turns 7 soon. Since Stella was born, she had to share her birthday parties with Stella. Their birthdays are two days apart! For this seventh birthday bash, we promised her her own party. We are celebrating it a week before her actual birthdate. Since last summer was all about Littlest Pet Shop for all three sisters, she said she wanted LPS everything. It’ll be called “Lily’s Pet Shop”.

I don’t think I was able to write a birthday story last year for Lily. As always, organizing parties for two girls at the same time leaves me with little time to reflect. So for this year, Lily gets her own day and own party, I’m writing about her before things get too busy.


Me and my Lily
I think it was Lily’s birth that taught me how to really be a mom. I loved Sophia from the moment she was in my womb. And when Lily was born, I was confused about loving two equally. She’s proof that the heart simply just grows and loves automatically.


Lily knows how to look at the camera's lens
She was born with a smile and a dimple.


The Lily Wears Prada
She had a very big personality. This was a shot I couldn’t resist – The Lily Wears Prada.


Me and Lily
Days before her baby sister was born and she became an Ate.


Lily and her cake
On her 3rd birthday, I was already having contractions. Stella was born two days later. I still wanted to give her a celebration so I organized a McDonalds birthday party for Lily a few days later, even though I couldn’t be there with the newborn. Oh my heart was so broken then. I so wanted to be with her.


Little Einsteins cake by Gel Colet
Lily was so happy with the cake, made by Gel Colet. She’s like that. She loves beautiful details.


Lily and William on an old school desk
With her best friend cousin William at Balzac’s, Distillery District, Toronto in 2010. She’s a very good big cousin.


Me and my babies
Our funny girl who also loves her quiet time.


Me and Lily
We created this “thing” between us. It’s something she claimed belongs to her. Our forehead kiss.


Lily’s life is full of pink and glitters. She can burst out in to song and dance in the middle of no where. She draws and paints with a passion from her gut. I like to keep her talent raw and untrained as long as possible. She has her own style.


Minutes before her party last year (joint with Stella). She ran to me from across the room and did our forehead kiss. She said, “This day started out not so good but now it’s the best day of my life. Thank you for this party mommy.” It is such a joy to do things for her.


Peterborough Lift Lock
I’m scared of middle child issues. I was somewhat a middle child too, being 2nd of four. Lily has found her comfortable and secure place within our family. Sometimes I think she grew up too fast. But then I remember that up to today she still wears glitter and feathers just like when she was 2.


She’s that easy going child. Like a magnet that draws in many “fans”. Lily lost her two front teeth in Canada over the spring. No drama. Just excitement.


She’s not fearless like her Ate. She carefully calculates every move. Already she knows she hates speed and heights — so much like me. After weighing things for a couple of hours, she decided to ride this baby roller coaster in Marineland last spring. Then she loved it and even gathered enough guts to raise her hand! It’s not something I could have told her to do. She likes figuring it out by herself.


She loves to dance. Unfortunately she’s only had a few baby ballet lessons. She wanted dance as an extra-curricular activity this year. I tried. But her academic schedule is just… insane. I hope to find her a dance school with a workable schedule.


This kid feels music run through her veins. Since she was a toddler Dancing Queen was her favourite. Up to now, it's still her song. Oh Lily...
Lily, our Dancing Queen.


Don’t grow up too fast, Little Miss Lily. Love you forever.



Patrick in Esquire



This month in Esquire read about President Aquino’s personal State of the Nation address. Exerpts here.


Bragstagram. Patrick is in @esquireph issue of How To Be A Man with no less than the President in the cover. He's featured w Bamboo, @erwanjheussaf, Rudy Farinas etc. Totally astig @trikoy. So proud of my man!
And one of those “few great men” is Patrick. Wow (proud wifey). He is featured in the story, “How to be a man” together with men like Erwan Heussaff, Bamboo, Atom Henares, Congressman Rudy Farinas, Nonoy Froilan and no less than the President of the Philippines.


Esquire July 2013
Now available in all magazine stands and bookstores. Also on Zinio.






Watsons invited me and a few bloggers to experience the revamp of their new shopping experience and brand revamp. We shopped with the new refreshed brand “look and feel” — modified Watsons logo, store interiors, brand visuals and new store front. There are new staff and manager uniforms featuring a smart tailored look, together with enhanced pharmacy, health and beauty counseling for customers, delivering a new level of personalized shopping.


Looking sharp! New staff and manager uniforms.


There is a wide selection of health and beauty products personal care, skincare, hair care, cosmetics. Filled my basket with pocket tissues and wet wipes (always practical in this world of bring-your-own-tissues). I’m also trying BYS nail polishes for the first time – one is matte and the other one is scented.


I decided to stock up on these boxes of tissues. They were on sale and were already very cheap to begin with. Oh my shoes – if you’ve been following my Instagram during my travels, you’d remember these one of the pairs of Swedish Hasbeens I bought in Imelda shoe store in Toronto. Dress is from J.Crew.


“The new brand ‘look and feel’ is designed to reflect Watsons’ dynamism, immediacy and personal touch that today’s customers in Asia expect from a leading retailer,” said Viki Encarnacion, Watsons Philippines Marketing Director. “We are enhancing the overall Watsons’ shopping experience, whilst continuing to ensure our pioneering products.”


“Watsons, as a brand, stands for contemporary living,” Robert U. Sun, Watsons Philippines General Manager. “We conducted extensive research with our customers and, based on their feedback, are evolving the Watsons brand to a more contemporary, attractive and engaging retail experience.”


I tried this deep heat massager. Because I have a neck situation, I bought it. I’m using it sparingly though until I get the go signal from a physical therapist.


Bumped into Frances Sales of Topaz Horizon there with her cute boys Inigo and Vito. I miss this baby/toddler stage. Sigh.


By August Watsons will launch its Android and iOS app. It will have health and beauty tips, new product updates and exclusive discount coupons. Check out the App Store and Google Play in August.


For more information, log on to Watsons website or Facebook.