Hope you guys are having an awesome new year so far! I’m in Singapore right now celebrating with the Bacarros. It’s Jim’s and my first year as a married couple and we geared up for the “Jim & Saab Rockin’ Family Tour” way ahead of time as you can read from my previous post. Haha! I love family trips!! It’s always a riot.
My favorite family trip has to be when Jim proposed to me in front of my mom and siblings in Ueno Park, Tokyo. We’re going back to Tokyo in February with the Magalonas and the Bunagans (a.k.a. Michael V’s family – he and tita Carol are my parents’ BFFs. Can you say #squadgoals??) and I’m sure it’s gonna be epic. Epic? That term’s so 2012. What’s a hipper term for epic? It’s gonna be as-monumental-as-star-wars-the-force-awakens-opening-day. Okay, maybe not quite but close enough.
You guys know what going to Japan equates to: I AM GONNA PIG OUT ON JAPANESE FOOD. As if I don’t do that enough locally hahaha but hey, iba pa rin sa Japan. I can’t wait. And for that exact reason, I am SUPER excited for #NationalTempuraDay!! Yep. It’s a thing!! Every January 7th, people from different parts of the world feast on this deep-fried seafood as they satisfy their cravings for prawn tempura.
I know Thanksgiving has long passed but THANK YOU, Tokyo Tokyo, as they will be bringing #NationalTempuraDay to the Philippines!
“We wanted to start the year right especially for our loyal fans. Our own take on the National Tempura Day is our way of extending our gratitude to them for loving our signature quality prawn tempura,” said Harvie Sering, Tokyo Tokyo Product Manager. “On this day, they can enjoy and fill their appetites with their favorite Prawn Tempura for only P25 per piece. That’s 50% off on our prawn tempura add-ons!”
The National Tempura Day 50% off promo applies on prawn tempura add-on and is valid for dine-in only. It’s #TempuraTime!!
One of the trickiest things about getting married is having to split up the holidays with your in-laws. Jim and I have been saying over and over again how thankful we are to love each other’s families. Can you imagine having to spend the holidays with people you don’t like?! That would be the worst!!! I’m writing this from the living room of ate Mia, Jim’s older sister who is based in Singapore. The Bacarros flew in to celebrate the new year with her and after the last crazy few weeks of December, I’m welcoming 2016 with open arms.
Christmas season in Manila means sitting in your car for hours. That’s exactly what happened to me on the 16th when I decided to go to Megamall. Worst decision ever. Where I live is literally a maximum of 10 minutes away from SM Megamall by car. It took me 2 hours — Two. Hours. — to get to the mall. KALURKS.
Going back to splitting the holidays between our families: after enduring so many hours on the road because of the Christmas rush, we decided to plan it all out in advance and call it “The Jim & Saab Rockin’ Family Tour 2015.” We packed our bags on the 23rd.
Because I offered to make macaroni salad for my family get together even if I had never made it before and I don’t cook, I spent about 5 hours making it. I went to the grocery store at 9, started making the salad at 10:30 and ended at around 3pm. SUCH A NOOB. Pero okay lang, it tasted GREAT and I’m so happy my family loved it as well.
DISCLAIMER: SORRY FOR THE PHOTOS. MY CAMERA’S BEING REPAIRED AT THE MOMENT :( So these are just pictures taken from different phones.
We drove to Antipolo at 5:30pm, and we did my family tradition: Christmas Eve mass at 7pm, dinner with mom’s side of the family at our home, opened gifts, etc.
At around 1:30am, we said goodnight and drove to Ayala Heights in QC to join Jim’s family. We opened gifts before his parents went to bed. Jim, Chelo, ate Mia and I stayed up until 5am.
It was my first time to sleep over in his old bedroom! Yay!
Jim and I woke up at 11:30am, drove to my dad’s sister’s house in New Manila for Christmas day lunch.
It’s been my family’s tradition to have lunch with my dad’s side of the family every Christmas day. Tita Maricar and tito Neil are great hosts and the food is always superb.
We left their home at 3:30pm and drove to Rockwell, Makati to check in at Aruga. It was our gift to mom to hold an overnight staycation on the 25th.
As mom was making dinner (I know, right, she still wanted to make dinner even if we wanted her to rest!!), we started playing some Pinoy novelty songs just to troll her. We played Otso Otso, some other songs I can’t remember right now and then we played Spaghetti by Joey de Leon and the Sexbomb Dancers. ISPAGETI PATAAS PATAAS NANG PATAAS. We were all laughing so loud but I could tell mom was getting annoyed already so I stopped the music. Exactly when I clicked stop, there was a loud boom from the kitchen. The stove kind of short-circuited and had a mini-explosion. Okay, exagge, hindi naman explosion. Pero yung sound sumabog talaga, thankfully no one got hurt. Frank pointed out that mom was making spaghetti and we were playing that Spaghetti song that Eat Bulaga made famous. We’ve got a lot of stories to back this up, but we do believe that was papa’s way of saying hello on Christmas day. Because of the incident, the hotel upgraded us to a bigger room free of charge. Thanks, pop.
We played some board games and drank some wine before going to sleep.
Okay, this is taking too long, I’m so sleepy na but I promised myself a blog post at least once a day for the new year. I’m just gonna do this with bullet points:
Got my nails done with Maxx in the morning
Checked out and had lunch with the family at CPK in Rockwell
Went home for like a split second before heading out for band practice
Did our Secret Santa with Cheats
Went to Saguijo for our Christmas gig
Got home at 3am
Woke up at 6am
Left for Tagaytay to celebrate Jim’s parents’ 35th wedding anniversary
Had breakfast at Antonio’s
Went to their newly-built house at his parents’ farm. It’s GORGEOUS, I’ll show you pictures another time.
We left Tagaytay at 3pm, got home at 7pm. NAKAKALOKA.
Had our carpenter Mang Danny come over to do some mini home projects. He came over with our family helper Yaya Gleza and our soon-to-be stay-at-home helper Vanessa. We’ve never had a stay-at-home kasambahay before so Gleza trained Vanessa the whole day while Mang Danny hung up some frames and installed some new furniture. Vanessa’s moving in some time in January. Wala pa siyang bed eh. Haha!
It was kind of an impromptu mini-home renovation from 9am-6pm. YAY.
Took Joey to the vet at around 11:30am for a check up because Jim and I suspected she had bladder stones again because of a very faint reddish brown color in her pee.
After 4 hours of tests and screenings, I decided to have her confined because she does have bladder stones again and she needed some meds. I wanted to have peace of mind while I’m away so I knew the best thing to do was to have doctors take care of her while I’m away :(
Jim cheered me up by buying Star Wars Battlefront on PS4 and we played it a bit before going to bed
Woke up at 3am for our 6am flight to Singapore!
So now we’ve got 1 more day before we fly home to Manila on the 3rd. The tour’s almost over and although it’s been tiring, I’m a happy kind of tired. I’m also VERY happy because the vet sent me updates of Joey thru Viber and sent me photos of her looking happy and active. Can’t wait to hug my baby love. K, gotta get some sleep!! Hoping to keep up this new year’s resolution of writing everyday.
I know I haven’t updated in the longest time but y’know… Christmas? In hindsight, I should have pre-written some Holiday posts or something. SORRY, I’M NOT PERFECT. Lelz. Good planning is essential for success so I’ve decided, together with the kind folks at Paper & Co., to give away a few planners to help you organize your 2016!
The JOURNEY 2016 is a travel themed planner and adult coloring book rolled into one. You can sneak in some color and fun into your hectic schedule so it doesn’t have to be all work and no play!
All my life, I’ve suffered from Error of Refraction. I have nearsightedness with terrible astigmatism and I finally decided to do something about it! I got LASIK surgery last month for my birthday!
Since I saved you all from the horrors of a visual step-by-step of the process, here are the steps in LASIK surgery:
A corneal flap has to be cut and lifted to expose the inner layers of the cornea
Laser energy will be applied to ablate or vaporize tissue to reshape the cornea
The flap is then returned to its original position to cover the lasered area
Aren’t you glad I edited out the whole process?? You’re welcome!!
Asian Eye Institute has been using the Bausch and Lomb XP microkeratome in cutting corneal flaps for the past ten years. The microkeratome is a mechanical device where a stainless steel blade is attached to cut the flap. Although there’s less than 1% chance of any complication with the device, it’s still scary to think of a blade touching your eye, right? Well, thanks to advanced technology, Asian Eye Institute is now offering BLADELESS LASIK with the help of their new machine, the state-of-the-art Technolas VICTUS femtosecond bladeless laser. There’s an even lesser chance for complication with the new machine (less than 0.2% chance). Since there’s a difference in price, you can choose which machine you’d like to use.
My procedure went as smooth as I anticipated, thanks to my mom’s raves. The doctor who performed surgery on me was the same one who did mom’s surgery ten years ago! Dr. Ang put anesthesia drops on my eyes and I didn’t feel a thing! Although, there was a time when I felt a bit of pressure on my eyeballs at the beginning. You know when you don’t feel anything but you still kind of feel something? Does that make sense? No? GET OUTTA HERE.
Just kidding. Anyway, it was like something was pushing down on my eyeballs and my vision went dark for a millisecond. Pretty crazy because my eyes were stuck open the whole time. I’m guessing that was the suction to cut the flap open? I could barely see any of the tools used — all I did was to look at the blinking red light. It was there to help me focus and Dr. Ang was very gentle and he talked me through the process the whole time. He even let one of his staff hold my hand during the first part when I was obviously nervous. I have no idea who you are, but if you’re reading this: thank you, stranger.
The actual laser ablation sounded really scary — like a cop was using a taser gun on my eyeball. It smelled like burning hair, too. But I didn’t feel a thing so it was definitely a strange experience. Except, I actually like the smell of burning hair, so… I guess I enjoyed that part. Haha.
Since recovery time varies from patient to patient, unfortunately I’m not like my mom who told me she could see clearly the very next day. My eyes are unusually dry and this is causing blurriness of vision. It’s been a few weeks and I’ve been using 3 different types of eye drops and gels 3 times a day. It’s definitely not as blurry as my previous 400-375 grade and I’m hoping I will make a full recovery in about a month. Thankfully, Dr. Ang and the rest of the AEI staff are very accommodating. They take post-operation check ups very seriously because it’s a huge part of a patient’s recovery. I am scheduled for my 3rd post-op check up on the 22nd!
Here are some Frequently Asked Questions in case you’re curious:
Q: My eye doctor said that my left eye is nearsighted while my right eye is farsighted. I am considering LASIK to correct these disorders. What do I need to do to prepare myself for LASIK? Does it ensure perfect vision after the surgery?
A: Before the surgery, you will have to undergo a screening test to determine if you are a good candidate for LASIK. It should also reveal whether you have other eye conditions that need attention. Discontinue wearing contact lenses for a week prior to the scheduled screening to minimize the effect of the lenses on the results. There is no guarantee of perfect vision after LASIK; the American Association of Professional Eyecare Specialists (AAPECS) reported that 55.3 percent of LASIK patients obtained 20/20 or better vision after LASIK surgery. However, you can minimize risk by choosing your LASIK provider carefully. Check the thoroughness of the screening process, the doctor’s training and expertise, the eye center’s track record, the cleanliness and sterility of the laser environment and the type of technology used in the surgery. You can also ask your friends and relatives for their referrals, or visit several eye centers first to get a feel for what the available options are.
Q: My dad had Laser vision correction years ago, and it took him two weeks to recover. Is that how long it takes to heal for LASIK?
A: Visual recovery varies from patient to patient, but with today’s technology, it generally takes one to two days. A patient should be able to drive or go back to work two days after the procedure. For steady and faster recovery, make sure to follow post-operative instructions from the doctor. Although LASIK is a popular and quick procedure, it is still a surgery, and the risks are similar to those of other eye surgeries.
Q: How will I know if I qualify for LASIK? What if I don’t qualify? What are my options?
A: A refractive screening test will determine if you are qualified for LASIK surgery. If you are not qualified, the test will also indicate what alternative procedure might be more suitable for you. If your cornea is too thin for LASIK, you may undergo PRK surgery. PRK is similar to LASIK, but instead of creating a corneal flap, the surface layer of the cornea is just removed. If your cornea is too thin even for PRK, then implantation of a Phakic intraocular lens is an option. Phakic intraocular lenses are also used for patients who have very high grade beyond the acceptable range for laser treatment.
Q: I had my LASIK last year. Now I’m 33 years old and truly enjoying my improved vision. Is the laser correction permanent?
A: LASIK is permanent. However, your body will undergo changes as you age, and this includes the condition or grade of your eyes. If your eyes regressed after LASIK, you may opt to have a touch up laser procedure to improve your vision. You may also have presbyopia or loss of near vision. Presbyopia is an age-related condition that makes it difficult for people in their 40s, 50s or 60s to focus on near objects and necessitates the use reading glasses. Asian Eye offers various treatment options, such as intraocular implants, multifocal contact lenses and Supracor laser procedure, to reduce or eliminate dependence on reading glasses. Asian Eye Institute is the only eye center in the Philippines with the Supracor technology. Patients who have had cataract surgery and wear reading eyeglasses for near vision can also benefit from this technology.
Whenever December comes around, people start making these cheesy round-up posts about the year. Well this post is exactly that — one of many, I’m predicting.
What a year 2015 has been. I can’t explain how so many things came together and how one thing just snowballed into the other. A lot of different projects came my way and well, I’ve been busier than ever. The curious thing is that most of it didn’t feel like work at all.
Here’s what I found out: it’s all about sticking to what makes you happy, and to keep doing it so that the joy stays constant. I started with my attitude, of being optimistic the way that my family taught me to be. Be the change you want to see in the world nga, diba? I’m just happy to be doing the things I love, and that’s one thing that keeps me going.
Another thing is the company I keep. I can’t stress how important it is to surround yourself with the right people. Personally, I feel very lucky and (hashtag) blessed that a good number of people helped me find my way and supported me through each step I took towards happiness.
So tonight, I’m raising a glass to these wonderful souls that shaped what’s been one of the best years of my life.
To mom, ate Unna, Nic, Maxx, Frank, Elmo, Arkin, Clara, mommy Bing, papa Gerry, ate Mia, Chelo, and Nunki (whew ang dami)—you guys will always be a constant source of strength for me. Thank you for never saying that there was something I couldn’t do. I also thank papa for his guidance, I know he’ll always look out for me.
Cheats, you guys are all amazing. Our music has become my favorite way of expressing myself. More than the music, what we’ve got is our awesome friendship. Let’s keep this show on the road. 🎶Calling out the animal, the animaaaal 🎶
My best friends
To my beshies and the No Filter crew, I will always be grateful for having such an awesome support group. Know that I’m always rooting for you guys as well. Millennials for life!! As if we had a choice. Haha.
Jim, you’re a game changer. Thanks to you, everything that used to be a cause for complaint is now a source of inspiration. You’re such a genius that I want to Magic-School-Bus myself to watch your brain at work. Is that creepy? #SorryNotSorry. I’m looking forward to all the beautiful music we’ll keep making together. I LOVE YOU.
So here’s a toast to all my loves—the people that lit up my path. You are all worth celebrating a hundred times over.
I feel like we all deserve an award for making it through another wonderful year — I guess this is my acceptance speech. Haha! Now the question is, who’s included in yours? Why not throw a little party for them? Don’t forget to bring the Johnnie and #LightItUpWithRedLabel😉
When I moved in with Jim after we got married, we had a lot of duplicate items like blenders, microwave ovens, and other household appliances. While it was admittedly tempting to keep everything because “sayang naman,” I am not a fan of impracticality.
I learned so much from the book, including the fact that lack of storage is not the reason for my clutter problem. Check out these passages:
“Why does my room still feel cluttered when I’ve worked so hard to organize and store things away?” I wondered. Filled with despair, I looked at the contents of each storage unit and had a flash of revelation. I didn’t need most of the things that were in them!
Putting things away creates the illusion that the clutter problem has been solved. But sooner or later, all the storage units are full, the room once again overflows with things, and some new and “easy” storage method becomes necessary, creating a negative spiral.
This is why I strongly advise everyone to just purge and get rid of everything you know you will never use. Instead of just disposing of these items, why not make money out of them to be able to buy the things that you actually do want and need? This is exactly what Jim and I did thru OLX!
The simple process of downloading the app on our phones, snapping a photo of the item and putting it on sale was definitely a NAKSperience! Smaller items like shoes and clothes were shipped directly to the buyers but I figured bigger items like appliances and gadgets might have to be double checked by the buyers. This is when I would arrange a meet-up with them at a nearby coffee shop! The money we made from selling on OLX was used for anything we wanted. We call it our fun money. Naks naman!
If you want to get in on it, check out the video below!
Always remember that something you’ve outgrown might make another person very happy. On the other side of the spectrum, buying previously loved items is a steal because you get what you want for a fraction of its original price! Another thing I like about OLX is that I can find unique and limited edition items that are no longer being sold in stores. This makes both the buyer and seller happy!
Naks naman! Download the OLX app (available on both Android and iOS) to start buying and selling. Enjoy!
I was putting off having to choose only 20 people to come over for my blog’s 12th anniversary meet up kasi HELLO ang hirap kaya pumili. This was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do, guyth!!
I chose 30 people instead of 20 but because sobrang last minute naman itong decision ko, I only have 20 loot bags so I’ll give that to the first 20 who arrive!! Those who don’t get a loot bag can still get a chance to win the raffle items via games. I don’t even know what games we’ll play. I have no program prepared, okay?? Basta there will be good food and lots of prizes :)
SO PLEASE CHECK YOUR E-MAILS!! I’m SO excited huhuhu.
I finished season 10 of Grey’s Anatomy, putting season 11 on hold because too much feels… Maybe next week. Haha. For months, my mom had been bugging me to watch Narcos. Finally, Jim and I watched it in a span of 3 days (we could have seen it in a day if life didn’t keep getting in the way lol) and I’ve got to say it might be the best TV series I’ve seen all year.
Narcos is about the notorious Medellin drug cartel ran by the notorious Pablo Escobar. Because it’s based on a true story, the story is presented like a docu-drama with inserts of real life footage. You’ll see actor Wagner Moura doing a brilliant portrayal of Pablo Escobar, cut to footage of the actual kingpin responsible for over 4,000 deaths in a span of 2 decades.
It doesn’t hurt that my crush, Pedro Pascal is in the show as DEA agent Javier Peña.
I first saw him as Oberyn Martell on Game Of Thrones. What a hottie.
Since Narcos is based on real events, King Joffrey doesn’t seem as cruel beside Escobar. Season 2 will come our early fall next year.
Trivia: Narrator/DEA agent Steve Murphy, played by Boyd Holbrook, appeared in Gone Girl as the guy who scammed Amy when she went in hiding.
So my blog is turning 12 this month. I’ve never done a meet up before because I’m shy like that (hehehe) but I would really like to have lunch and meet some of my loyal blog readers this Saturday, December 12. YAY!
I can only accommodate 20 people, because I’m socially awkward. And I actually want to talk to you guys! Maybe next year we can do a bigger celebration. I have no idea how to choose the twenty so I hope you guys can just leave a note below and I will randomly select 20 people by tomorrow :) Please only post once and please do so ONLY if you can actually go!!
We’re going to eat, play games, play with Joey Bear, take home loot bags and get to win a lot of cool items including phones, books, backpacks, etc!