2017 Week 1: Holiday Break Part 3

Part 1 | Part 2

December 26, 2016 – January 1, 2016

December 30, 2016

We had a jam-packed schedule this day.

We went to Manila Ocean Park in the morning. Lucky for us, our company partnered with Manila Ocean Park for a promo of several of their packages. While they have their own promo, the one offered to our company was still cheaper at Php 450.00 for 6 attractions. Original price for this was Php 2,800.00. I didn’t know that Manila Ocean Park is this expensive already.

Anyway, our package includes the Sea Lion show, Shark and Rays Dry Encounter, Jellies Exhibit, Oceanarium, Trails to Antarctica (Penguin Exhibit, Snow Village) and the Symphony Evening show. We were not able to watch the evening show though because we left after lunch.

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First in line for the Sea Lion Show

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At the Shark and Rays Dry Encounter. We were allowed to touch the back of a ray. The little girl is hungry, hence can’t smile :p

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Entrance to the Jellies Exhibit. The little girl is still not in the mood hehehehe.

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Groufie by the mirror with the jellies hehehe.

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Hello jelly!

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Oceanarium…Hello fishies!

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Entrance to the Trails to Antarctica. The little girl is now smiling because we’re having lunch after this stop hahaha!

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Nanny to these kids..They were watching the penguins.

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Hello penguins! You can enter this enclosed area but you have to pay Php 500/3 pax and Php 100 for each additional pax. Medyo expensive so next time na lang.

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Resting

Next was Manila Zoo. Entrance for non-Manila residents – Php 100.00 for adults, Php 60.00 for children below 4 feet.

While it was nice to see all the animals in the zoo, we can’t help but feel pity for them because most of these animals should be in the wide open spaces. Plus, we think that they are not really taken cared of based on their looks.

Also, while it was nice to see an elephant in the flesh, I feel sad for Mali because he’s alone in his cage and he’s been like that for decades! I wish that they find a better place for him or that they improve his living space. It’s all concrete!

But despite these, it was still an educational trip especially for the kids.

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Our only picture at the zoo that’s in my phone hehehe.

We went home after Manila Zoo to rest a bit and complete our packing. But we went out again at around 6:30 PM to visit MERALCO’s Christmas lights display since it was just 20 minutes walk from the apartment.

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MERALCO’s setup is more sophisticated now as compared to when I visited it 2 or 3 years ago.

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The Holy Family

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Gaya-gaya :p

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Thank you, MERALCO!

By 10PM, we are already on our way to Victory Liner Cubao terminal in time for our 11:30 PM trip back to Baguio.

End of Manila – Tagaytay trip.

Special thanks to Uber and technology which allowed us to conveniently reach our destinations and without me having to worry whether the other group reached our destination as expected. We were 10 in the group, 11 at some point so I had to always book 2 cars. Expensive but nevertheless, this setup gave me peace of mind.

Part 4

2017 Week 1: Holiday Break Part 2

Part 1

December 26, 2016 – January 1, 2017

Manila – Tagaytay Trip (December 27-30, 2016)

Last year, I, together with nieces, cousins, an aunt and uncle visited my brother in Tagaytay. It was a short trip but we really had a blast. Last November, I was contemplating on doing a repeat but was still undecided until mid-December because while it will be a blast, it will also be tiring and all I wanted to do during the break was to hibernate and do some errands for the house hehehe. But my other brother was also contemplating on bringing his family to Tagaytay and maybe visit Manila Ocean Park and Manila Zoo so we just did it.

The final cast: me, my 2 nieces, my brother, his wife, his 3 year old kid, my cousin’s 2 kids, my aunt, my aunt’s daughter.

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Pasyal Tagaytay 2016 edition.

We left Baguio on the night of December 27 and arrived in Manila at around 5 AM. We got down at Victory Liner Cubao so that I coud secure our tickets going back to Baguio for December 30.

December 28, 2016

We rested for a few hours at my apartment and then prepared again to go to Tagaytay. We reached Tagaytay before 1 PM and lunch was waiting for us hehehe.

We visited People’s Park in the Sky this time as most of the cast have not been there yet.

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View from the top

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They went ahead on their own to take pictures by this huge pineapple.

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Our turn

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My brother’s family. Yes, Gysher? Any problem?

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Sunset as we were leaving People’s Park. So happy I was able to catch this!

We dropped by Starbucks San Jose after for our annual dose of frappuccino.

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It’s hard to take a groufie at night. End result? Incomplete hehehe.

We went home for dinner. I asked my brother to just buy cow meat for bulalo which will serve as our viand for all meals at their home so that it would be cheaper. I was trying to cut as much cost as possible hehehe.

December 29, 2016

On December 29, we left Tagaytay at mid-morning. We had ube halaya with us courtesy of my brother and sister-in-law. Thank you!

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Thank you, brader and mga ate! Sa susunod uli hehe.

We were already waiting for a bus when my brother mentioned that he needs a printer. I have mine which I have not used for more than 3 years and he can borrow it. He went back home and we asked him to bring along her daughter so that she can join us in Manila.

We were supposed to go to Manila Ocean Park but it was already mid-afternoon and I’m afraid we won’t be able to maximize our stay there.

The adults then went to Baclaran to check out some goods. I therefore conclude that it’s better to go there in the morning when most shops are open so that you’ll have more options to choose from.

We went to S&R Shaw after. I just want to show them the place, buy chicken for dinner and chocolates for New Year.

We went home to a crying 3 year old hehehe.

To be continued.

Part 3

2017 Week 1: Holiday Break Part 1

December 26, 2016 – January 1, 2016

Happy New Year!!! Hello, 2017! You truly are here already hehehe.

Anyway, catching up on my blog posts. Here are all that happened over the holidays.

Trip to Buguias, Benguet

As mentioned in my previous post, our mom’s uncle (his dad’s brother) passed away last December 23 and so we had to postpone our Tagaytay trip and go to Buguias instead last December 26. Buguias is one of the municipalities in Benguet and it’s 4 hours away from Baguio via Halsema Highway. But I think it took us more than 4 hours because my uncle drives slower than most and it was also raining that time due to Typhoon Nina so the roads were slippery which makes driving harder. My brother, my sister and I went, together with some of my mom’s brothers and sisters.

I was dreading that trip because of the cold weather but I was also excited to see relatives who I’ve not seen for a long time. I’ve seen some of them during my parents’ wakes and it was good to see them again despite the circumstances.

What I admired the most in that community was that alcoholic drinks and gambling were not allowed in the house of the bereaved family. We did not see drunk men which is common in other areas. People just went there to really be with the family and mingle with other relatives and/or acquaintances.

They also have what they call presentation sessions wherein, they presented the family tree. It was my first time to experience that during a wake and I think it is a good practice so that people would have a better understanding of how they are related to each other.

An uncle hosted us for the night so that was a relief because we were able to sleep soundly in bed, complete with thick blankets hehehe. It was just a challenge going to their home because the pathway was really muddy. One wrong step and you’ll fall on the mud or slide and bring along with you the people behind you hahaha.

The burial was last December 27 but unfortunately, mass was not to start until 2 PM and it was already too late for some of us who were travelling to Manila that night so we just left earlier.

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My reward for going to Buguias. Lots of views such as this along the way.

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Garden views too.

Part 2

2016 Week 52 Recap: Merry Christmas!

December 19-25, 2016

Week 52…because next week is already 2017…say that again?! It really is already 2017 next Sunday. Ok.

Anyway…

Work

I only had to report for work on Tuesday and Friday, and was allowed to work from home. Thanks, boss. The rest of the days, I was on offset.

Monday, December 19

Last Monday, I went to Baclaran to buy some stuff. I went there straight, after attending the dawn mass. There were already a lot of people but some shops are still closed while most open shops were still unloading their items for sale. I went to Jollibee then for breakfast first. But when I was there, I saw many people already with big plastic bags filled with goods. How did they do that? Maybe, they already know where to get their stuff. As for me, I still need to canvas.

There was one new mall that sells everything wholesale. Good for reselling. It’s mostly infants’ and children’s clothes. There were also some stalls in the other malls selling factory overruns.

I was able to buy some of the items I was looking for. Not much but a good start.

From Baclaran, I went to Landmark Makati to buy some small containers as I don’t want to bring all the big bottles of my kikay kit all the way to Baguio but I don’t want to leave them either hehehe.

Thursday, December 22

On Thursday AM, I am already on my way to Baguio. I went straight to my brother’s place to drop off the stuff I bought in Baclaran.

I went to SM Baguio after for a much needed pedicure (was not able to do this in Manila anymore hehehe). I went to Baguio Cathedral after for the evening mass.

I went to Tea House in Session for dinner. No, not Vizco’s this time. It was because my friend recommended their ube delight. And true enough, it was yummy and ok for repeat orders.

Friday, December 23

Started work in the morning and went out in the afternoon. My niece joined me this time. First stop was the bank. Good thing they still have regular office hours last Friday. From the bank, we went straight to Baguio Cathedral for the evening mass, and also the last mass for the simbang gabi.

We first went to Victory to reserve our tickets. There was a line. And my niece was hungry hehehehe. She had to wait for a while, and then walk back to SM for dinner. When asked what she liked, she said burger and fries and drinks and chicken.

We were supposed to go home after dinner but the taxi line was long so we roamed around for a while. After an hour, when we checked the line again, it was still long. This time, she asked me that we go back to the department store. Something fishy. She wants something hahaha! I asked her straight what she needed. Her straight answer? Shoes. Lagot. Hahaha! I brought her to the less expensive ones. She wants some doll shoes but we can’t find one in her size and with a good design. But then I saw a pair of rubber shoes and when I showed it to her, she liked it. Very good.

Cabs were already scarce by the time we went in line so we had to wait a long time. At one point, my niece even suggested that we walk home. Ay. We are 9 KMs away from the city. Cannot be, and it was already close to midnight. We were able to get a ride and reached home around 12:30 AM already. My niece can’t still believe that it will be morning soon when she asked the time hehehe. I think it was her first time to stay out that late hehehehehe. BI tita here  😛  😛  😛 .

Saturday, December 24

I stayed home this day. I wanted to attend the evening mass but transportation is a challenge in our place.

I taught my nieces about online banking.

I also bought a selfie stick which I practiced using for a while and then it went to my niece’s possession for the rest of the day.

At 5 PM, I suddenly decided to host dinner for us siblings. Nothing fancy. Just chicken adobo and salad. And it’s because on the 25th, we all have different plans hehehe.

Sunday, December 25

I was able to attend the last mass in the morning in our parish. The BF was invited to a Christmas lunch by one of the parishioners, and he tagged me along. This parishioner happens to be my uncle’s former colleague. They are now both retired. Small world.

It’s a regular working day for the BF (which I don’t get really since it’s Christmas…) so we stayed in his office and I waited for him until he was done, only to part ways again hehehehe.

Change in plans

We are supposed to be on our way to Manila now. However, our mother’s uncle passed away last December 23 and us kids need to take over our mother’s clan responsibilities so we cancelled our Manila trip we are going to Bugias, Benguet instead tomorrow. I’m excited for this detour but I’m dreading the very cold weather. It’s even colder there than here in Baguio.

We will resume our Manila trip on the 27th. We’ll play it by ear as to what time will that be. It depends on what time we’ll be arriving in Baguio from Buguias. If it’s too late, my cousin will just bring the kids to the terminal and we’ll go straight to Manila. Wala nang uwi-uwi  for the adults who are coming with us hehe.

Thank you, dear Lord for your unending blessings even if I am undeserving. I am forever grateful.

Merry Christmas everyone!

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Divine Mercy Church Belen 2016

Christmas 2016. Pardon the other hand. Nasa harap namin ang pulutan hehehe.

Christmas 2016. Pardon the other hand. Nasa harap namin ang pulutan hehehe.

2016 Week 1 Recap: Holiday Break Part 3

December 22, 2015 – January 3, 2016

Part 1 | Part 2

Friend’s Bridal Shower

We were back in Baguio the morning of the 29th. Just rested for a while and went out again for some errands and attend a friend’s bridal shower. Her sister and cousins prepared a simple tea party for her. Very sweet of them. And she was surprised. Kudos to the organizers.

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Friends for life!

Our friendship spans 30 years, starting in Kinder. What a blessing to have friendships that long. The three of us grew up together because we were all classmates in elementary. I guess all the walking to and from school helped us form a bond of a lifetime. While we all lead different lives since high school and onwards, we did not fail to keep in touch and tried our best to meet up when all of us are in Baguio. Our other friend got married first in 2009, and now it’s her turn. I am just happy for her that she’s in this position now. Part of our conversations in the past were fears of growing old and not finding our partners in life. But now, she’s about to embark on another journey, just as we are starting with the new year. Praying for a happy and strong married life for her and her partner, with God in the center of their relationship.
Side story: we were all born in the same year but in different months and I’m the eldest among the three. When our other friend, who was our bunso, got married in 2009, I jokingly said she’ll be next and as the eldest, I’ll be the last to get married in the group. Now it’s happening haha!

Time out with all the social events

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Show the yard some loving 🙂

I purposefully did not go out on December 30 so that I could tackle the pending task of weeding out the grasses in our backyard. I just want a clean looking backyard come year end. And while there are still spaces to clean, at least I was able to complete the area where the kids could play.

On December 31, we went out for some groceries in the morning and immediately went home for the fear of having to wait longer for taxi cabs if we stayed longer in town. Baguio is now very crowded. It’s hard to roam around freely especially on holidays.

We attended the New Year’s Eve mass to cap 2015 and welcome 2016. Thanks to my uncle and auntie for staying with us, so there’s transportation to use. The priest’s message was timely for me. He said that this new year, let us trust God’s divine providence while we continue to strive harder to be better.

Happy New Year!

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2016 bonfire

For several years now, my mother’s siblings usually gather at our place for New Year lunch. But now that Mama’s gone, I did not have solid plans for the new year. However, during my cousin’s wedding, an uncle asked if there will still be lunch at home, hence I said of course, we can still have one, with me now hosting. We’ll see again next year.

Break Almost Over

I was supposed to go back to Manila on the 2nd but the friend who’s getting married texted that the entourage dresses were already available for fitting so I just decided to go back on the 3rd, after the fitting. Turns out, the dress has not yet been adjusted and I’d have to go back next week for the fitting. Oh well. No sweat.

The bonus? I was able to have lunch with the BF. Sundays are one of his busiest days so I was just expecting a hi and goodbye kind of thing but he was available after the last morning mass. Bitin pero better than nothing.

I did not have ticket reservations so I was prepared to wait in line for hours so keri lang. Parang last year din lang. No sweat. But I really need to start exploring other options since Victory Liner is always full now. My friend’s sister rode Joy Bus. Will try that this weekend.

Finally at 1 AM on the 4th, back in your arms, Manila.

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