Friday, June 19, 2020

PILI beauty box unboxing

Women of a certain age really need to keep a beauty regimen. Maintainance is really key to keeping your skin healthy.

I am by no means a beauty blogger... but yeah, why not review a beauty set? There is always a first time.

I have a great friend who sent me her PILI ANI beauty box. Yes, this is a sponsored review. Hahaha

First off, the box was really great, with magnet closure like the ones I get from Kiehls.

I got really excited to see it came with a jade roller. To tell you the truth, I haven’t tried using a jade roller even though it was so popular last year. So it was quite exciting to get one to try.

So first off, I did the initial cleansing (using my current facial wash- innis free green tea)

The cream was really cute and it came with a acrylic spoon to scoop out the product. The consistency was creamy and not watery. The one in the set  is the youthful glow anti aging cream
You can get it HERE.   I applied a dollop on each cheek and spread it.

Next, I opened the facial oil -(containing  pili oil and Elemis oil extract) - ageless concentrate

This actually reminds me of olive oil, maybe since it’s also plant based- I put a few drops on my hand and rubbed and then patted it over my face. - The I did the jade roller
It was cold to the face which was great (note to self: keep the jade roller chilled in the ref for next time) the oil absorbed well and did not fell sticky — ( I hate sticky products on my face)

Roll.. roll... roll...

And here is my face after 5 minutes.- the roller kind of gave me a red flush ( I guess it got the blood circulating)
Total effect on my skin will have to come after two weeks, but my initial thoughts on this is... NOT BAD at all. We have to support local products for our economy and I find this as a great alternative to the imported brands I am currently using. My face was massaged really good and it felt really soft from the moisturizer and oil.
So, as per the box hashtag... do I look #IAmAgeless?

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Street foodie adventure: bangkok

    I had some business in Bangkok. My husband (foodie like me) suggested we eat at some of the more popular Michelin starred street food while we are here. So, why not? I can find time.

First off, we tried looking into Jai fai. I was told the reservations would stretch till May (really?) At the time when people were scared to travel.. she was still busy. When we inquired, it was late afternoon and was told that the number was at 36 and the last number in line was 76. (More or less 2-3 hours wait). So the first shop we went to is MR. JO crispy pork.
It’s really easy to find using google maps and near where I was staying which was Chinatown. Their specialty was of course... crispy pork and then the soup which you had a choice of toppings. (Pork meat, pork liver, heart, tongue and various internal organs)

  The crispy pork reminded me of Bagnet and lechon kawali. It was ok. (Not like super fantastic)

The soup was very peppery.. very similar to bak kut teh of Singapore. I liked it.
After visiting this .. It makes you wonder what criteria Michelin does for the stars. LOL. It wasn’t mind blowingly fantastic. Just ok.

Now for the fun part... JAI  FAI.

It was genius of my friend to suggest we try to get a number at pre opening (10am) for the actual opening which was 1:30pm. She asked her staff to line up and get listed and we were #3 in line (woohoo). I got work done in the morning and we hurried off to the restaurant at 1pm (near to Chinatown also). We got there and saw Jai fai prepping for the start of her day. So as a thick skinned fan... I approached her for a picture which she obliged. (Jackpot!)

The restaurant was small... I guess maybe 7 tables at the most and all the cooking was done by Jai fai herself
The line outside... it was more after we came out after finishing our meal.

Jai fai has technique.... which was obvious after I bit into her crab omelette.

The large size (she had small-med-large) was priced at 1000 baht (about $35US) and full of crab meat and crab meat only. The egg part was very thin and CRISPY! Which amazed me. The crabmeat was very fresh and juicy inside... very very good.

Her shrimp were really jumbo sized and I really enjoyed this one. The shrimp with garlic ( I think 1000 baht also)

Traditional tomyum... warning...spicy!!! And the serving size good for 4 people. (It was ok. My thai friends said it was good)

Huge shrimp nearly the width of the bowl

Rad nar tally
 This was noodle with seafood (my friend said Hk style) and won an award with a local foodie body in Thailand as the “best” version in Thailand.
I found it ok. The seafood was huge but lacking the noodle part. 6/10 this is about 500baht ($17)

Phad kee mao talay

Thai style noodles (still lacking noodles for me.. it could have gotten more noodles).  6/10 about ($17)
Both the noodle dish were good for 2 person serving. But I highly recommend you order the crab omelette (order 2 if you are 4 people). It was really worth it. The stars of the meal was the shrimp and crab.
The waiting list for email reservations... which I think is allotted only 1 table... better take your chances with the early booking
The people outside waiting....

If you want the full menu... here are some pics

If you are ever in bangkok... and have friends who can book early for you. Try it!!

Sunday, February 2, 2020

The road to a better and fruitful 2020

It’s been a long while since I wrote something. I guess the last two years were a bit bleh for me. Trying to be creative was so hard if you were emotionally drained. Wasn’t updating the blog nor drawing anything or posting on instagram.

BUT... 2020 is a new century.... and yes. Everything is looking up. As I really believe. Family is everything. I am really thankful to God that He showed me the right path to take. (Guided me on what I have to do).

So... going back.

I committed myself to doing something creative. Like making time for my watercolor. I took time to attend a workshop of PLAYCRAFTS (they can be found on IG and FB). I highly recommend their workshops. I have a fair share of them after all. The teacher is very knowledgeable, the materials provided were really up to par (prime if I may say so) and the teaching was very hands on (limited students)

Here is a sample of my “practice”
Not bad eh? And that was just the practice!
the carnations you can see are a bit wonky... LOL

Another thing I have been working out... (literally) is doing a 21k sometime in the future.

I can’t really say I have worked up that part... still trying to build up my mileage (doing 3-5k and 7k)

So far, I have improved my time. From 9 minutes / km (at the start) to about 7:40- 8 mins

Although I haven’t lost weight (maybe 3lbs- 5lbs?) I felt a shift in my body... shorts have started fitting again. Which is good. This is my old time

And now this is my last run (a 7km run)

Which I can say is quite an achievement. It really takes a lot for me to start running. I really don’t like it. But my ever supportive hubby is pushing me to achieve things I may not imagine myself doing.

One thing I can say... a good playlist is key to the pushing. Like WHAM’S “wake me up before you go go”... hahaha

Wish me luck. Goal is 21k in march... haven’t registered yet... Can’t even wrap my head around the distance. But I guess you have to tackle everything one step at a time. One kilometer at a time.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Hotel Review: Via hotel taipei main station

It has been a long time since I visited Taiwan. I usually get centrally located hotels at cities where I stay, preferably near modes of transport. Via Hotel was just that.

Via Hotel was really a winner for me

 First off, they have a 24/7 lounge where you can drink coffee and have snacks (taiwanese snacks, soya milk, ice cream, instant noodles). I must say, their coffee was really good!
ice cream and soda all you can

unli juice and water plus yogurt and soy milk

taiwanese snacks

And to think I only paid about $90/ night. The savings from my coffee and water consumption was well worth it! did I mention they even have massage chairs you can use for free??? (sorry no picture)


The rooms was clean and modern and the bed was comfy. (And I am very particular about beds)
Although the room size was not very big... It was enough for the price I paid considering.

inside the room was also a back massager..... you can use to massage your lower back. First time for me to see one in a hotel room. ++++ points! hubby really made use of this one


The toilet also was "japanese" style with the buttons and bidet options. If you haven't been to japan and experienced their toilets... you are missing a lot!

The hotel itself is situated in the "book" street of Taipei.. all around if you walk, you can see several bookstores. There was also one daiso-like shop near the hotel (sorry forgot to take the name) that sold cute and cheap items.
the trip from the airport was very straight forward (one express train ride) and then a 900m/ 10 min  walk. I really dont mind walking so the 2 block walk was also a opportunity to look around.

The hotel is so centrally located, you can walk to the chiang kai shek memorial and the other surrounding city must sees. (president's house, the city wall etc)

In the morning, the lounge serves breakfast (although it was not written in the hotel booking).

It is open to all hotel guests, with bread, cheese, siao long pao (dumplings), pork bun and cereal. Loved lounging in that area after a long day and just drink coffee. (there is also a TV there).

Overall bothe me and my husband gave this hotel 4 stars for cleanliness and the amenities they provide for their guests.

BTW, around the hotel are a lot of beef noodle joints. You can try them one by one.

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Lumiang Cave (SAGADA).. buwis buhay adventure

A lot of people  has probably  gone to Sagada (Mt. province),  which has a reputation for being secluded and hard to reach. In a way, it is, if you count 5 hours driving from Manila. (through zig zag roads)

Sagada is enchanting for its raw beauty. the cool crisp air and the freshness of everything, very far from the noise of the city.

We did the usual,  of course like eating at Lemon Pie house (not the best I have eaten, honestly speaking). Yogurt house (superb! esp with the mountain honey)

What I would like to write on  is the Lumiang-Sumaging caving experience. I would consider myself fairly adventurous. I can hike several kilometers to go up mountains with no problems. So when we did Sagada, which I think is so raw that everything you do here is WITH EFFORT... I was open to anything.

Our guide (Apiit) told us we can really do the long course of the caves (lumiang-sumaging), which I though would mean a easy caving experience. Was I wrong!

It was a long way down to the entrance of the cave... at the mouth, you can see some hanging coffins that we cordoned off (maybe in case someone might try to steal them)

We were supposed to have a gas lamp, but somehow, our guide was having a hard time making it light. So we just made do with our cellphone lights.

deep recesses of the cave

The first part of the  hike, I was wondering how we could reach the bottom from where we were since it was a long long way down... with no sign of any path. When Apiit took us to a hole in the wall (Literally,     A      HOLE...... IN..... THE..... WALL.) my mind screamed..... whaaaaaaat?

the hole where you put your body

It was a good thing there were a couple of other people ahead of us (actually a big group) and their lamps were also helping us... basically, we tried to keep up with their group so we can have light.

There was one point (and here I don't have any pictures).. where Apiit said, "Mam, please move to the left when you pass through because at the right side is a crevasse. 😱". BUT WAIT.... there's more... ( you can see why I don't have picture since I have to hold on to the walls..). buhay muna bago picture   (life before picture taking)

When I crawled to the other side he then proceeded to tell me to cross a rock face wall using only my hands and feet while looking for hand holds (think Sly Stallone in cliffhanger).. Remember, we didn't have any lamps of our own... so basically, my husband had to shine a light on me while I try not to die! This is where hugging the wall and being/channeling spiderman works. I screamed at my guide.,.. why didn't you tell me it was like this inside?

So, you can tell I did make it out alive. (lol) I used my cellphone when I got to the other side to shine on my husband. whew!

We also had to navigate climbing up a wall. (rappelling/wall climbing)

swinging from one side to the next

and basically trying not to accidentally slip down anything sheer. like a 30 foot drop.

In the middle, there was a small pool and a huge stalactite . 

What kept running through my head was... good thing it was just us and I wasn't with the kids. I would have had a heart attack from worrying how they would get out.

We skipped going to the other pools in sumaging cave (there were bats there and everything was slippery...) and by that time, I was ready to come out.
the way out... climbing a rock wall

i see the light!

The last picture is the entrance to Sumaging cave.... for us, the exit... They do not charge entrance fee for visitors, but in my opinion, they should and the fees in turn would be used to improve the facilities of the cave for the safety of the visitors.

Honestly, we weren't even given helmets! My husband's shoes kept slipping from the rocks (very very dangerous I tell you)

I guess you could say, that will be the last time I will do Lumiang. (won't recommend it to others either)


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