Saturday, September 21


I saw this online article about Calidad Humana which was started our by Chilean ambassador to Manila Roberto Mayorga and his wife Paulina.

They have been inspired by our smiles, the Filipino smile and have decided to use this element or characteristic of ours to promote our country and our people.

(video grabbed from youtube, Smiles for the World AVP)

This does mean a lot. 

Weird as it may sound but we, Filipinos, do know how to make the most of what we have. OFWs here in Dubai will always have a sad story to tell about how they got here but still they do not lose hope that there is still something in store for them... for their future and their families. 

No need to dwell on the past 
This is usually what Filipinos would say. Since Dubai is a melting pot of different nationalities, a lot of them are amazed with how the Filipinos cope with almost everything - from their core family up to their extended families and sometimes, make-up families (like friends, friends of friends, etc).

I guess, it is because we always have the "never give up" attitude. Always knowing deep in our hearts that all of the hardships will bring fruit... we just don't know it yet.

So for you, my reader(s), SMILE... :)

To read more about Calidad Humana (click on this link).


Saturday, September 14


is something that can never be associated with me... at all!

When I was a kid, my mom will always encourage me to cook or spend time with her in the kitchen and learn the basics (like cooking a sunny side egg!).

I always decline.

Of course, I do want to spend time with my mom so in turn, I devote my nights with her - chatting about her work, her friends and more.

If she is very insistent that I participate in the kitchen (according to her, being a girl, I or we, including my youngest sister, need to know how to use the kitchen because when we get married, we should be experts in this part of the house), I will help in preparing the dish, like chopping the garlic or onions, peel whatever needs to be peeled, chop whatever needs to be chopped.

Fast forward, living here in Dubai with R made me realise that I should have listened to my mom.

Being a newbie in this country about 10 years ago, we only have enough, i.e. we need to stay home more because we were not earning enough for us to go to dates and eat out - all the time.

It was a bit difficult I have to say. I had to really make an effort on learning the basics. At times, I can see some of my girl friends roll their eyes at me because I can't cook. They had this impression in their minds that I am a rich girl trying to be independent.

I am  not.

I did not come from a wealthy family. We are part of the middle class family who can afford to have help once in a while. When we don't have help, my mom always made sure there is food on the table or  prepared dishes stored in the fridge for us to re-heat (I know, I'm lucky!).

I was determined to learn more about cooking (oh by the way, I can bake! However who wants to eat cake or cookies for dinner right?). Good thing now, Google has been very friendly and I was able to search for recipes online.

My version of my grandmother's Kiampung (without the nuts)

I started on the easy stuff and voila, I was successful! I had my ups and downs to be honest. There were times when I had a lot of failures when it comes to whipping up a dish, I tend to stop (so that I can shrug off the bad luck! :P).

Cordon Bleu covered with Oatmeal (recipe grabbed from my friend, Caren) 
Being a wife to a very supportive husband, I always want to make sure that I experiment and re-create dishes. Some are still what we are used to (it's because R can only take about 2-3 experiment dishes at a time) like the sinigang or adobo however at times, I try to do some of it with a twist!

Lemon Garlic Shrimp Pasta (recipe from my cousin, Sheryll) 
Usually, inspiration to cook comes from various ways like recipes I see online and fortunately for us, we have Food Network on cable!!

We have been following Ina and Guy on their shows!!!
I hope that you get inspired too! :) The only problem that I have is being familiar with some of the ingredients and for the first time, I got acquainted with the spices available here in Dubai. I had a close encounter with the dill, parsley, fennel seeds and more. I still need to learn more but at least I have made the first step! :) 

Now, I really hope my love affair with cooking this does not catch up with my waist! :(

Sunday, September 1

Best and Worst Cities to Live 2013

(link and story can be found here

I was browsing through my emails and saw the link about the Best and Worst Cities to Live for 2013.  What I have noticed is most of them are places in Canada and Australia. 

Initially, hooray because my brother is living on the city that holds the 3rd spot (Vancouver, Canada). My brother and his entire family landed in Canada a couple of months ago. They are still on the "adjusting period" and I am glad that they are able to connect with some relatives and friends way back in high school (God really has His ways doesn't he?). 

I just noticed that there was no explanation on what were the criteria for recognising them as the best and worst cities to live in. 

Looking at the worst cities, it seems the criteria was based on the current situations the cities have right now. 

Now, I wonder when will the cities of the Philippines take one of the Top 10 spot? =)