7 Things Every Wife Should Know – Book Review

7 things

This book came very timely… this year we’ll be celebrating our 7th year wedding anniversary and as you all know, there such a term called the seven-year itch – suggesting that happiness in a relationship declines after around year seven of a marriage. Well, I do not believe that but it’s better to be proactive you know. So, I really thank the author of this book (Ms. Viviene) for a wonderful reading time and triumphant perspective to marriage.

Sorry, I’m not going to share the tips and tricks I learned because I want you to read the book and/or have your own copy so you have something to refer to when you’re tired of doing your routine house chores or when you feel like your husband is being so insensitive or when you’re having those “losyang moments” and everything in between. This book will remind us and keep us company on our journey to wifery. 😉

By the way, you can get a copy of this book with a 15% discount, from P395 to P335, free shipping nationwide. 🙂 Just email the author at teacher_viviene@yahoo.com with the subject line 15%OFF. You can place your order until the end of February to enjoy the discount and free shipping. Happy Reading! 🙂


Efforts of a Minimalist: Gift Certificates

If there’s one thing that I will truly miss honey… it will be this, only this. 🙂

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That’s my favorite incentive from hubby, not only because he gives it all to me (well he practically gives me everything he earns – yes! I’m a very lucky girl) but because it is not taxed and I don’t get the guilty feeling spending it – what else can I do with those GCs right? 😉

Well, we all know that GCs are meant to be spent but since I’m a minimalist… I don’t splurge, it’s not my thing. I only buy staples – food, groceries and sometimes clothes, in tranches using those stubs. I divide them equally, so we can spend it monthly for the entire year.

Where do I usually spend our GCs?

1. Food – the fast-food chain that serves my son’s favorite breakfast and my husband’s favorite chicken combo gladly accepts GCs… Yehey! We always get a double treat!

2. Groceries – our monthly groceries are usually charged to our GCs. Either we buy at SM, Robinsons or Shopwise, it doesn’t matter – I always pay less than 200 pesos.

3. Clothes – on rare occasion, I buy clothes in stores that accepts GCs. I’m not only talking about department stores, but stand alone shops like Uniqlo. Sweet isn’t it?

Our Brain Fit Experience

One benefit of homeschooling is having the time to pursue activities that the child likes or what the parents like their kids to try. 😉 My husband and I also consider those carefully chosen activities as investment for our son.

So when I encountered Brain Fit at Blogapalooza 2014, my heart skipped a bit and I got really interested… a sort of fitness program for the brain… how cool is that? So I immediately signed up for a FREE trial.



They have five Smart Programs for individuals ages 4 to 18, yup mommies, I didn’t make it to the cut-off. Hehe! 🙂 Martie was able to try three of them. He’s too young for the fourth program so I was the one who tried it (just for the sake of trying) and the fifth program is meant for groups – hence we cannot try it.

The first is the SMART VISION



Actually, I thought this would be so easy for him, he did more elaborate puzzle than that one before and also I’m his mom, his first and number one fan – what do you expect? But he wasn’t able to do the required task in a given time… he wasn’t fast enough. Honestly we haven’t worked on any timed activity at home, everything is based on our own pace… so I guess, we have to take note of that.




Again I thought Martie would ace this one, because I believe that he’s an auditory learner. But then again, it wasn’t too easy for him… though he was able to follow the instructions as he listen to the recording, he missed quite a number of questions. Maybe it is because he has curved ear canal… just trying to rationalize you know. 🙂

The third and last for him was SMART MOVES



This is one is kinda fun to look at… but when it comes to the last part, he gets a bit challenged. He cannot perform the task using just one hand, honestly, I didn’t realize that it matters that much because he can write perfectly fine.


The fourth, the one that I tried was SMART FOCUS



It is easy to stay focused on something engaging, but if it is “boring”, it is a very different story. Good thing my son was there, I was able to force myself to sit, focus and finish the task required – I need to be a good example. Right?! But I’m telling you it wasn’t easy.

After trying all those programs, we (my husband and I) think that this is a very systematized way of giving your brain some form of exercise. Also, the assessment would almost always be very objective, either timed or computer generated scores will define your performance. And of course, you will have your previous time or scores to beat – a very healthy way to teach self improvement. So, do we like Brain Fit? YES! Definitely.

Don’t worry mommies, I asked what you would like to know… How much does each program cost? Each program ranges from 850 to 1,000 Php per session. I don’t want to make a comment on the price right now, I need a full immersion into the program to say if they are charging too much or just right… so I’ll just leave it at that, but I do encourage you to call them (telephone numbers below) for a free trial, and experience it for yourself. 🙂

Greenhills Branch – 725-8500 / 668-2719 / (0917)599-1992

Manila Downtown Branch – 554-0381 / (0917)776-1689

Makati Branch – (0906)450-4416

A Timely Press Release – Smart and Easy Travel Tips You Have to Know

Since we’re kicking off the year 2015 by a family getaway and load ourselves with Vitamin Sea (term taken from Chyng Reyes), this is the best reminder for us… and for all of you this season. Happy Holidays! 😉

The most seasoned travelers can attest–it’s really the little things that make the biggest difference when you’re exploring new territory. A few upgrades here and there and the necessary nuisance of going through airport security or going for a long-haul journey becomes a breeze; you might even get a couple of perks along the way.

From coach to business class

If you want to get upgraded from your cramped coach seats up to roomier business class, then you have to dress the part. Sure a t-shirt and flip-flops might be comfortable for your flight, but the airline will be less likely to put you with their top paying clientele if you don’t look the part.

From deluxe rooms to suites

The only time tardiness might actually be worth something. Checking in later in the afternoon or even evening gives hotel front desks a better idea of their occupancy; which means asking for an upgrade at this point might be more feasible. Remember to be polite (you are boldly asking for an upgrade, after all) and do so when there are no other guests around.

From casual to cosmopolitan

It’s hard to be fashionable when you’re essentially trying to fit a week’s worth of outfits into a single suitcase while making sure they’re comfortable, but it is possible. For instance, bring flat shoes that run a half size bigger (feet swell while on air and you’ll need the respite from all that walking), bring clothes that you can layer depending on the weather, try to keep your color palette strictly basic—blacks, whites, navys and nudes are easy to mix and match.

From falling into tourist traps to taking the road less travelled

Smart travellers know that most popular tourist destinations are expensive and sometimes, not even all that interesting; so try going for the road less travelled. If you absolutely have to or want to go to a popular tourist destination, go on a weekday and at a weird hour to minimize lines.

From holding up security lines to breezing through

Here’s a quick tip on how to make sure you don’t bumble through the security checks—place your shoes (and coat) on the first bin, your laptop and liquids in the second bin, and your purse or carry on in the third. As you wait for your things on the other side, your shoes and coat come out first giving you time to grab your bag and place your laptop back inside. Also, it pays to not wear belts and thigh high lace up boots to the airport.

From being unprepared to staying healthy

Travellers who have to share cabin space with 100 other humans who could possibly have cough and colds have to arrive at their destination healthy. It’s no fun exploring a new city when you’re running a flu, nursing a cold and dealing with a cough.

Before you go on a Vitamin C binge though, you have to know that it’s not advisable to double-up on your vitamin C dose. Our bodies our only capable of absorbing up to 400g, so anything more than that, will do nothing to boost protection for your immune system.


Instead, pop one capsule of Conzace to stave off germs and viruses from fellow passengers. Conzace multivitamins is proven to activate more immunity cells than plain Vitamin C.  And when your immunity is in top shape, you can better manage illnesses – allowing your body to prevent catching common viruses or recover faster if you do fall ill.

It’s available per piece and only for P12.40 per capsule, but when you’re trying to keep yourself healthy for a cross-Atlantic journey, you might as well keep a generous stock. Conzace is also easily available from all major drugstores and supermarkets over the counter.

Finally, here’s an added plus, the zinc and vitamins A, C and E, which all contain anti-oxidants, also help in maintaining great skin.

White sand, new bag and cancelled flight

We’re supposed to visit the wonderful island of Boracay last week… an all-expense-paid trip by our generous boss. 🙂 We’re very excited and my bag is so ready to go.



My perfect bag for this island getaway was a gift from a friend. These bags are made by retrenched sewers in their community (how noble is that?). I don’t know how much it is (well, it is a gift), but I can ask her in case someone out there is interested to buy. Let’s support a nice product for a great cause. 😉

But since typhoon Ruby went island hopping here in the Philippines last week, our flight was cancelled due to bad weather condition (force majeure). Well, it’s better to be safe, so I really thank Cebu Pacific for being pro-active in cancelling flights (though it seems that weather is fine here in Manila).

Of course, we re-booked our hotel accommodation and our flights… well that’s a whole different story, a tiring and stressful story to tell… so let’s just skip that one and go straight to the things that I’m looking forward to our coming vacation… an awesome way to start the year 2015. 🙂

Puka Beach



We really love this beach (yes, including my boys)… less crowd, less noise, just pure lovely beach… I can’t wait to be back here.

Tilapia and Chips



I told you already that I am no-food-blogger-material (here), so please pardon my photo here… but I think this would clearly show how much we enjoyed the food at Tilapia and Chips. Their deep-fried-butterfly-cut tilapia is the best…yummmy. 🙂

Tangled all the way

Since, I’ve deprived myself from haircut for quite a long time (I’m preparing for a BIG hair make-over), I would love to have an elaborate braided hair at the island and be Mrs. Dreadie. Right honey? 😉



My first encounter – Washoku De Azabu

I envy the temperament of food bloggers… they have the patience to wait and take pictures of the sumptuous food before finally digging in… well, I don’t have that. As soon as the food is in front of me, I just say grace and I devour. Haha!

But last month, my husband invited me to try this newly opened restaurant near his workplace. He said that the restaurant serves great Japanese food and it is the first here in Manila and they have a Japanese chef and most importantly, it’s his treat (it was his birthday weekend). So, I immediately said yes. 🙂

A few minutes drive from our place, Washoku De Azabu is at the 2nd Floor of BMW Showroom in Greenhills (along Ortigas Ave, cor Roosevelt). They have basement pay parking and is open even on weekends. The place is quiet, cozy and minimally designed (very Japanese) – i like it. Since they just opened last October (first week if I remember it right – blame it on the vegetable tempura), the wait staff are still learning the menu, but I appreciate their honesty and help in giving the details of the ingredients behind the menu.

OK, let me show you what we had, and I’m telling you, I had the hardest time. My husband had to call my attention several times to take a picture first before sampling the food. 😉

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Spicy Tuna Roll, a nice way to start the meal.

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Ramen (I forgot the exact name), but this is the QUEEN for me – better than the king! 😉

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Vegetable Tempura with a missing lady finger. Munch! Munch! And may I say that this is the BEST vegetable tempura I had so far. Though serving is quite small for me. Haha! 🙂

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Flat Fish, my son said this is so yummy. Let’s take it from him, he finished this dish with a bowl of steamed rice and soy sauce with lemon. 🙂

Not included in the picture are three cups of Japanese rice, an order of asparagus with bacon (I have my own version here), an order of bacon with quail eggs plus their complimentary tea, all of that for one thousand seven hundred pesos (1,700). Not bad for a great and authentic Japanese meal for the family.

See you again Washoku de Azabu. 🙂

Efforts of a Minimalist – Board game

Since my husband started wearing lenses, I started collecting the covers of his lens container.

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Because I have a project in mind…. and I’m so happy that I was able to finally collect enough covers and find time to make this board (Dama Board). Now the there are more “quiet” moments and less idle things at home. 😉


Martie is seriously thinking of his next move. 🙂

By the way, this board game is now the official game of my boys. Yey! My first upcycling project is such a winner! 🙂