Going out of town and re-energizing for the week

Last weekend, Charlie and I went with our friends to Tagaytay and did nothing but eat, drink some good wine and beer and alcohol, play The Resistance (which messed with our friendship so bad), and meet some work deadlines. The weather was so cold (Manila standard of measurement) and the place was so very beautiful. When we came back to Manila and Monday happened, I noticed that I was more focused with my work. Projects that were moving slow were getting done in the speed of light (kidding! But ideas were coming to me pretty quickly) and well, I feel motivated to design and code and finish projects in general.

I guess the city squeezes your creative juice out, and Charlie and I regretted not going out of time more often. Just for leisure, basically. Not the exhausting trips we have when we go abroad, but more like a few hour’s ride away from the city, sleeping overnight at some new place and just chilling and drinking good wine while eating good food.

Maundy Thursdate at Saint’s Alp, Katipunan

Honestly, I’m not the most religious person out there so my idea of a Holy Week holiday well-spent is getting some work done with Charlie (though 50% of the time we’re just playing Scramble and Words with Friends, haha).

Charlie and I at Saint's Alp

While most malls and establishments are expected to be closed during Holy Week, there are (thankfully) those heathen-run restaurants that are open (if not for all days during the Holy Week Holiday, a lot were open yesterday). Charlie and I first hung out at Burger King in Marcos Highway because they have plugs and free WIFI! They also have an impressive Holy Week schedule where they’re still open 24/7 for most days, and then for some days just half the day or closing at 9pm, but never closed all day.

That’s what you call business dedication. Haha.  Continue readingMaundy Thursdate at Saint’s Alp, Katipunan

Buying into the commercialized Valentine’s

I love getting flowers~

What do couples do on Valentine’s Day? How does it feel like to have a guy surprise you with things?

Yesterday was the first time I had a “date” for Valentine’s. Charlie made my first Valentine’s day with him (or, with any guy for that matter) special enough. Woke up to a touching letter/email Charlie wrote, was sent music he made, got roses and chocolates for lunch, and then had dinner at Chef Tatung’s. At lunch I didn’t really notice couples but during dinner I was sort-of fascinated on how, yeah, everyone does go out on a dinner date on Valentine’s! I have been a nitpicky and demanding girlfriend lately that, well, now Charlie got so much for me that I have to make up for it somehow!

The music he made is beautiful; you have to listen to it.

It was also the first time I really felt the whole commercialization of the day for couples. It’s easier to ignore the couple deals or the love sales when you’re single because you don’t really need it. But when you have to buy flowers for that special someone, or eat dinner in a restaurant, give a gift — well, how everything is so overpriced won’t go unnoticed. I received all these things and I know that Charlie still had to spend more than usual for me.

Not that you have to spend so much for Valentine’s because there’s so many ways to celebrate it but I just only noticed (how late, I know, haha) how everyone seems to try to milk more money from it (this thought lingers on my mind mostly because last night’s dinner was way overpriced than how much its value felt like). Continue readingBuying into the commercialized Valentine’s

Gym: quite the new, fun thing

Summer is near

I have learned to what!? Go to the gym? Hell yeah!

I’ve just recently started to understand how this whole business of trying to get slimmer (or a little more toned) is definitely more fun when you’re doing it with somebody: a gym-buddy, jog-buddy, whathaveyou.

The last time I tried to do anything remotely similar to exercising was back during the first semester of my senior year of college because I needed to lose the weight I gained during my 4-month JTA in Singapore. Back then I would just jog twice a week for less than an hour with James so it was only enough for me to go back to my pre-JTA weight. The next ten pounds I lost after that was all because of stress and drama shit. Continue readingGym: quite the new, fun thing

New Year Pig-Out

My long weekend had basically been a period of pigging out. Saturday we celebrated Jaime’s birthday with some food and drinks at Ang Pulo. It was also my brother’s birthday, which he celebrated with the family on Sunday. That meant a whole day at Greenbelt of eating (Kenji Tei), movies, and then more food (Starbucks, Cibo). At that point I forgot that I had a buffet lunch scheduled with Charlie and Cholo (Jaime and the others weren’t able to go) the next day — at Sambo Kojin. Charlie and I went to the gym after (a story that merits a separate blog post) but even after that I still pigged out a bit. Not to mention my dinner with James yesterday, and another meet-up tonight.

Let’s just say I’ve been celebrating Chinese New Year with the rest of the other Asians by keeping my belly full these days. Which is probably not the best idea, but it makes my tummy happy.  Continue readingNew Year Pig-Out

Dessert Blends at Raintree

Strawberry Cheesecake dessert blend from Raintree

As Raintree is now me and Charlie’s default go-to place on Saturdays, I just wanted to share about our love for their Dessert Blends!

Before Raintree, I wouldn’t have considered buying anything that isn’t milk tea or tea. But their dessert blends have completely changed me. When we drop by Raintree, I don’t order milk tea anymore; I just simply prefer their dessert blends now.

I’ve blogged about Charlie’s favorite in my last Raintree entry: Chocolate Truffle. But today, I want to share about how yummy the Strawberry Cheesecake and Banoffee Pie flavors are.

When I ordered Strawberry Cheesecake, I didn’t ask them to lessen the sugar and Charlie found it too sweet. I added coconut jelly to it because I wanted to chew on something, but even without it the blend was still very good.

Meanwhile, yesterday I ordered a Banoffee Pie blend. I think it’s now our new favorite. Even with only a quarter sugar it didn’t taste weird and was still very yummy. I liked the crumbs (graham crumbs, methinks) at the bottom of the mix. I love banana a lot, and after letting Charlie have a taste he said he’d start ordering Banoffee Pie instead of Chocolate Truffle next time.

I’ll have to try the other flavors too!

In which Charlie buys me gifts I don’t deserve

Some days I’m not the best person to love, and this week was one of those. Despite all the tiny fights and arguments we’ve had (mostly because I’ve been feeling, as I’ve mentioned, grumpy and discontent with other things in life), Charlie got me some gifts today!

Last month we went to MUJI at High Street and when I saw all the tights they sold, I wanted to buy them all! Well, I can’t have everything (yet)  but Charlie got me three colors tonight.

Grey (heat control), Brown (mix good fit), Dark Red (mix good fit)

I LOVE warmth. In fact, I really need it. I get so cold easily I’d probably die in either of the poles. Just holding halo-halo makes my fingers red and puffy. That’s how much I can’t adapt easily to the cold. But I also hate wearing pants, so with these I’ll NEVER have to wear pants ever again! (Just kidding. Although my old skinny jeans from four years ago are kinda…not so skinny on my legs anymore. Either I got thinner a bit or the jeans widened a little with age.) Continue readingIn which Charlie buys me gifts I don’t deserve

Salad and soup at Uncle Cheffy

Just to break the semi-serious and semi-delirious posts on my personal life, I come with two of my favorite dishes from Uncle Cheffy. I’m lucky that they’re basically just a street away from where I work so when I’m not in saving mode, Charlie and I can choose to have lunch there. Which is how we started this year (yes, this is a back-log post that until today was waiting to happen)! Some diet-friendly soup and salad from Uncle Cheffy.  Continue readingSalad and soup at Uncle Cheffy

2011 Gifts Post

Here are some of my more notable gifts from 2011. Mostly gifts exchanged between me and Charlie because I don’t really see other people to get (and receive) gifts much from except for Charlie, haha. :P

Again, things aren’t listed in any particular order.

Also, I’d like to say that all the gifts I get from everyone, especially Charlie, are great, but these are just my favorites. Continue reading2011 Gifts Post

End-of-the-year Tagaytay Datetrip

I’ve been wanting to get out of the city for a long time now, and I’ve honestly been feeling sick getting cooped up in the middle of all these buildings and of everything familiar. I confessed to Charlie that I wanted to just get a ticket to somewhere and then fly out spontaneously, without plans and with no warnings. After all, despite my tendency to plan every little thing, from the length of time to get from one place to another to a list of things I could possibly do in a place, I still haven’t lost my moments of impulsiveness. It gets worse when I get antsy or restless or I’m sad or angry or depressed over some things (like a friendship issue I argued with Charlie the other day).

Charlie knows how I feel about these things (and how to cheer me up, I guess), so he said that maybe I should take a day off and we can have that day-trip (date-trip!) to Tagaytay (or Manila, but I said Manila is still too much of a “city” for me). Tagaytay isn’t a beach or a plane ride to somewhere, but it’s not like we could go abroad (maybe next time, because I’m also the type of person who’d just love to get at ticket for a trip that’s a few days away without anything much planned except for a specific destination or two I’d try to figure my way to. I’m thinking it wouldn’t be so bad to impulsively book a flight to Thailand (Bangkok) or HK or Singapore a few days or a week before, since I did that when I went to Phuket! No reservations and everything. And I got conned, but that’s a story for a different day and a lesson never to be repeated again!).

So we took off on a small “adventure”. We said we’d have lunch at Sonya’s Garden (whose website needs some major revamping IMHO),  without reservations (and at this time of the year, when everyone’s going on vacations and trips! Basically we’re in a “come what may” mode), and then just chill in Tagaytay, wherever we end up going.

You know it’s when you can spend 12+ hours together with one other person, mostly stuck in the car, but you still enjoy talking and making jokes and listening to a podcast and getting lost but still end up feeling like you just had the best trip ever that you realize, well, you probably make a good couple.  Continue readingEnd-of-the-year Tagaytay Datetrip