Saturday, January 31, 2009

Simple Indulgences

Last Thursday evening after work, hubby and I found ourselves having dinner at The Dome Cafe in the DIFC. Our stomachs were grumbling so loudly so we decided to indulge ourselves to our all-time favorite recipes: Grilled Garlic Prawns & Garlic Chicken plus a tall glass of Lemon Mint Juice (that hubby thoroughly enjoyed). Thereafter, we went to my favorite supermarket, Safestway, to buy some ingredients for his carrot cake and to stock up on some PX goods - Tostitos Restaurant Style Nachos, Tostitos Mild Cheese Salsa, Butterfinger, Reese's Peanut Buttercups with Caramel & Raisinets - that can't be easily found in other supermarkets in town.

But our favorite indulgence that night were these:

HIS - obviously (haha!)
HERS - i love bananas!

The moment the first spoonful touched my lips, it literally felt like heaven! I haven't had Chunky Monkey in a very long time. I always buy the Choco Chip Cookie Dough which is my all-time favorite but because it's too sweet, I decided to grab the Chunky Monkey tub instead.

How about you, what are your indulgences lately? 

Thursday, January 29, 2009

new nook

we’re moving flats next month! i am so happy! we’re finally getting a bigger 2-bedroom unit in anticipation of the little one. the building is brand new, nearer to our workplace & just right next to a shopping mall (scary for our pockets!). it’s accessible and more importantly, has a proper parking area. no need to worry about the car being parked at a barren lot. we chose the 2nd floor (which is technically the 6th floor) because we don’t want to go down many flights in case of an emergency.

i’m so excited to decorate the flat! i know it’s not advisable for pregnant women to move houses, but heck, we are doing this for the baby. our friends volunteered to lend a hand so i’m sure the move will be easier with more people doing the work. for now, we need to start sorting the things that we can give away, sell and throw. we also need to get a few boxes to put the stuff we need to transfer. and we also need to scout for a few pieces of furniture that will compliment the ones that we already have. there’s an ongoing sale everywhere so now’s a good time to buy. i wanna get a bigger dining set!

i hope after all the decorating gets done before my tummy gets a lot bigger. i’d need to focus on adorning the nursery, too, and as early as now, i’m already checking out stuff to be used by the baby. i never knew window shopping for babies can be so much fun!

Monday, January 26, 2009

our 2008 holidays

would you believe ours was uneventful? seriously. granted that the stork came to visit, we did not have any grand celebration during the holidays. Christmas and New Year came by but were spent quietly with family. since i couldn’t go home on the 25th to see my family, they just visited us at my in-laws. they also dropped by on the day of my Dad’s flight which also happened to be our 3rd Civil wedding anniversary. our 2nd Church anniversary was spent at Rockwell lunching at Pepper Lunch and buying some sweets at Royce. i told you - nothing really fancy schmancy.

as i have been put to bed rest, all our planned trips and activities didn’t push
through. we wanted to go to Tagaytay so badly, but because i cannot go on a long trip, it was scrapped. we also wanted to find a property in the south that we can invest in, but didn’t get a chance to. we wanted to dine at all the restaurants we have in our list but only managed to achieve less than half of what was listed. we wanted to watch a movie at the premier moviehouses in town, but didn’t get to. pregnancy got in the way, BUT we really didn’t mind. there’s always a next time anyway. baby comes FIRST...always.

despite the restrictions i had, i was still able to see not just our relatives but also our friends. i met up with my ex-colleagues, had coffee (i didn’t know then that i was already preggy and i only had iced tea) with my ex-gym buddies, had dinner with highschool friends & college chums, had a belated Christmas party with my highschool barkada with their respective families and also met up with a few of Ryan’s sisses. we also attended 3 weddings in one day – a gradeschool friend, a highschool barkada and a college barkada, two days before i went to see the OB for the first time. shame that i didn't get a chance to take a pic of Ryan in his suit as he attended a separate wedding. it was a tiring day, but was so much fun!

coffee with my gym mates

dinner with my ex-colleagues & our Ninong

having dinner with my kumares & kumpare at G3

at Glenn & Olive's wedding reception

with gradeschool friend, Irene & her hubby at Drea's wedding

HS Barkada Christmas Party at Linden Suites

college friends at Murakami

my HS tormentors who love me to bits
at Bonifacio High Street

before we left for Dubai, we went for some last minute shopping for pasalubong - glad that my team mates liked the otap (sugar biscuits) and polvoron i bought for them.

i guess our 6 weeks in Manila wasn’t so bad. some days it rained, but i honestly liked the cool weather. we spent a lot of time watching TV and updating ourselves with the news. i read books, too because of the extra time i had in my hands. and Ryan had time to play with Alexis, his beloved black Labrador Retriever.

i’m sure our next holiday in Manila will be quite different. but i bet that would be doubly fun! i'm already looking forward to it as early as now.

addicted to pet society

and it’s all Hazel’s fault! she begged me to create a pet in Facebook, and now i can’t seem to get enough of it. the characters are soooo adorable!

if only i could learn how to earn more coins aside from betting and racing, i’d be very happy. my pet badly needs a home make-over.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

cold spell in the UAE

news about snow falling in the UAE got me feeling amazed. i thought it was just a myth that a portion of the UAE experiences snowfall…until the northern emirate of Ras Al Khaimah experienced heavy snow fall on their Jebel Jais mountain cluster last weekend. wow!

that probably explains why Friday was extra chilly (and rainy, too). it’s been really cold since we arrived here from our holidays, and just this morning, outside temp was 13 degrees celsius. good thing cars here come with heaters and seat warmers! for good measure, i also have a fleece blanket, a comfy pillow and a pair of airline socks kept in the car ‘cos even though i love the winter season here, i easily get cold. besides, it always feels good being on the road feeling all warm and toasty when it’s cold and rainy outside, doesn’t it?

*pic courtesy of Gulf News

the land down under

Australia is one of my dream countries to see. i have a second degree cousin living there and she has long been inviting us to come and visit her and her family there. however, now that i am expecting, all our travel plans this year have been put on hold. but the pregnancy didn’t hold me back from scouting for cheap flights to Sydney. i want to see what rates i can get flying via United Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Qantas or Jetstar not just to Sydney but flights to other parts of Australia like Melbourne and Perth, too.

in preparation for the trip, which cross fingers i hope would push through later when i give birth, i guess it won’t hurt to check out
international airfares and compare prices as early as now. besides, i know international flights can be a bit pricey, too, so better if we can save up for the trip in advance.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

noblesse oblige award!

an award like this is very humbling. thank you to Pat for presenting this to me.

i started my blog in 2007, hoping to document every special moment of my life as a wife, a daughter, a sister and a friend. now that i am walking towards the path of being a Mom, this blog will represent another phase in my life. this blog also became a source of added income when i recently ventured into the bandwagon. but one of the most important achievements of this blog is having earned new friends online who also became my support group and cheerleaders at my most trying times. to those friends, you know who you are, and i thank you for being there for me.

this award is presented to bloggers who display consistency in any one or a combination of these conditions:
1. the blogger manifests exemplary attitude, respecting the nuances that pervades amongst different cultures and beliefs.
2. the blog contents inspire; strives to encourage and offers solutions.
3. there is a clear purpose at the Blog; one that fosters a better understanding on Social, Political, Economic, the Arts, Culture and Sciences and Beliefs.
4. the blog is refreshing and creative.
5. the blogger promotes friendship and positive thinking.

the blogger who receives this award will need to perform the following steps:
1. create a post with a mention and link to the person who presented the Noblesse Oblige Award.
2. the award conditions must be displayed at the Post.
3. write a short article about what the blog has thus far achieved – preferably citing one or more older Post to support.
4. the blogger must present the Noblesse Oblige Award in concurrence with the Award conditions.
5. the blogger must display the Award at any location at the blog.

i pass on this award to my mates, Cheryll, Tracy & Jody.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

AWK# 5: Full Circle Part I

joining Aggie again, and sharing with you a wrap up of the year that was.

2008 Wrap Up — Second Half Edition:

WHAT HAVE YOU DONE THAT YOU’VE NEVER DONE BEFORE? i’ve conceived and now building a baby in my body

DID YOU KEEP YOUR NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS? i’m one of those who don’t make New Year’s Resolutions

DID ANYONE CLOSE TO YOU GIVE BIRTH? yes, three of my closest HS friends did – Sparkle, Len & Jeez

DID ANYONE CLOSE TO YOU DIE? a next door neighbor back home who’s a close family friend and godfather of my youngest sister

WHAT COUNTRIES DID YOU VISIT? USA, Jordan, Macau and Hong Kong

WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO HAVE FOR 2009 THAT YOU LACKED in 2008? a healthy baby

WHAT DATE WILL REMAIN ETCHED UPON YOUR MEMORY AND WHY? December 17, 2008 – the day i learned i was given a second chance at pregnancy. it was the most perfect gift i’ve ever received in my entire life!

WHAT WAS YOUR BIGGEST ACHIEVEMENT OF THE YEAR? i guess my biggest achievement was overcoming a hurdle and not giving up and losing faith

WHAT WAS YOUR BIGGEST FAILURE? not losing weight & instead gained some more :(

DID YOU SUFFER ILLNESS OR INJURY? didn’t but i miscarried :'(

WHAT WAS THE BEST THING YOU BOUGHT? the Canon 40 D slr for hubby - it captures very beautiful memories and we love it!

WHOSE BEHAVIOR MERITED CELEBRATION? who else but my husband – he is the sweetest thing!

WHOSE BEHAVIOR MADE YOU APPALLED AND DEPRESSED? can i skip this question? it’s too personal and i don’t think i’m ready to divulge the truth

WHERE DID MOST OF YOUR MONEY GO? dining out, groceries, travelling and shopping

WHAT DID YOU GET REALLY, REALLY, REALLY EXCITED ABOUT? going home to Manila after almost 2 years

“You’ll Always Be My Baby” rendition of David Cook

III. RICHER OF POORER? poorer in material things, but richer in all others more significant than money

WHAT DO YOU WISH YOU’D DONE MORE? give back to society

WHAT DO YOU WISH YOU’D DONE LESS OF? eat unhealthy food & shop for unnecessary things

DID YOU FALL IN LOVE? yes – i fall in love with the husband over and over again! and i’ve also fallen in love with the little one growing in my tummy

WHAT WAS YOUR FAVORITE TV PROGRAM? Grey’s Anatomy, House MD & Gossip Girl


WHAT WAS THE BEST BOOK YOU READ? the Shopaholic series. the books kept me sane!

WHAT WAS YOUR GREATEST MUSICAL DISCOVERY? classical - they play a lot of such music here at work

WHAT DID YOU WANT AND GET? a chance at motherhood


WHAT DID YOU DO ON YOUR BIRTHDAY, AND HOW OLD WERE YOU? i threw a bowling party with cocktails afterwards. i turned the big 3-0!

WHAT ONE THING WOULD HAVE MADE YOUR YEAR IMMEASURABLY MORE SATISFYING? i couldn’t ask for anything more because what we had were enough to satisfy us immeasurably. God was so good to us He blessed us with the most important things in life!

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONAL FASHION CONCEPT THIS PAST YEAR? same as ever – simple, classic cuts. crisp suits for work & comfy top & jeans or shorts for weekends

WHAT KEPT YOU SANE? my hubby, my books, the internet and the telly. and might i add my faith, of course



WHO DID YOU MISS? my family and friends back home – which is why we went home for the holidays

Sunday, January 18, 2009

giving up

…my high heeled shoes!

yes, you read that right – i am giving up my beloved tall shoes to give way to flats and bling slides. now that i am expecting, i have begun unearthing my ballerina flats, which i only use during weekends. in fact, i have bought 3 additional pairs while in Manila, apart from the one i got in Hong Kong.

it takes a lot of getting used to, i must admit. and i feel like a midget next to my colleagues! just last November, i was eyeing a lovely red pair, but now i have to rest my feet and make do with what is comfortable to wear. knowing me, i am the type who loves
high heels because i feel sexy in them. i rarely wear anything less than 3 inches high. sometimes i even go for 4 inches on special occasions. and when i spot a nice pair of platform shoes, i immediately buy them without hesitation. i am proud that i can wear heels all day!

i believe high heels can add glamour to your outfit, that’s why i carefully choose what’s best to go with my suits or dresses. i open my options to many shoe brands so that i can select from a broad range of designs and style. too bad i just discovered Flirty Lingerie’s sexy shoes now – at a time when i can only look but not indulge. add to the fact that probably after giving birth, my feet will be bigger. i wish i found them sooner though because they have a wide array of nice high heels to choose from. i could’ve been sporting a lot more prettier pairs if i had!

infanticipating updates

finally, something about our little one growing in my tummy.

i'm on my 12th week this coming Saturday and so far, so good. my first check up with the OB was on the 22nd December. proximity wise, we chose to go to Asian Hospital. we checked their website and found an OB who was available to see me that week as most doctors have already gone for their Christmas break. when we went to see the OB, she felt concerned about the miscarriage i had last September at around 5 weeks, so she had me go to PGH for several tests to see whether i have APAS. that was the reason why we had to extend our holiday for another week because the Medical Research Lab of PGH was closed from 22nd Dec and opened last 5th Jan only. test results were due on the day of our flight so we had to move it a week later to give room for a couple more doctor's visit and another ultrasound.

thank God the results were normal and i was negative of ANA! we were so relieved, especially me. all i ever wanted was for the baby to be safe. and when we saw our baby during the second ultrasound, we were ecstatic! baby was moving from left to right and looked like it was punching something in the air (or more like water). i felt a tear trickle down my cheek when i saw how active baby was at 10 weeks. and the Daddy-to-be was thrilled, as well. after the ultrasound, hubby told me how surreal it felt for him, too. everything was normal according to the doctor so i was given a go signal to travel (as if i had no other choice).

i am due for my next prenatal check up on the 31st Jan with an OB a pregnant friend recommended to me. by that time, i am done with my first trimester and would probably be showing a bigger baby bump. i could now feel my belly getting rounder each day. i can still wear my jeans sans the button but with a belly band on top of it. i've begun buying flats and a few maternity clothes while on holiday so that i don't have to worry about shopping for my size while here in Dubai. and besides, there are not much choices of preggy clothes here so i bought some pieces that i could wear for work.

let me leave you with a few pics of our precious little one at 7 weeks and 2 days and at 10 weeks and 3 days:

Saturday, January 17, 2009

my blog is fabulous!

the rule:

i need to list 5 addictions that i have and pass this tag/award to 5 more fabulous blogs.

my addictions:
1. my husband - can't get enough of his crazy antics! (and his baked goodies, too!)
2. the telly - i've been addicted to it since i was a kid.
3. surfing the net - who isn't these days?
4. shopping - like Mandy, i like shopping for shoes and bags rather than clothes. but this addiction is something i need to address or else i'd be buried in debt!
5. dining out - obviously, this is my one addiction that made me gain so much weight. 

i pass on this award to the fab blogs of Chung, Vannie, Valerie, Pat & Faye

attending trade shows

part of my job requires me to attend conferences and exhibits locally and abroad.  i love it because not only do i get a chance to see the world, but I also get to meet a lot of new people.  i have been doing this job for almost three years now, and i find it very interesting.

i’ve had experience being on trade show exhibits, especially in the US. i love the atmosphere especially when there’s good traffic of people.  even though it can be very tiring, it still is fun.  but what excites me the most is watching the setting up of the exhibits where i get to see the workers put up the displays.  their creativity is remarkable!  i bet some of those exhibitors are clients of Gilbert Displays.  that is not surprising because they are a trusted name in the industry.

now that i am pregnant, i don’t think i’ll be attending any trade show exhibit soon.  but that is fine, there’s still next year anyway. 

Friday, January 16, 2009

back in Dubai

our 6-week long holiday officially ended yesterday. in as much as we wanted to extend it a bit longer, we really can't anymore because we both needed to get back to our jobs.   

my choice of airline whenever i travel back home is Emirates. i like it that the flight is direct - no stopovers, declared or otherwise.  and i know i made the right choice when once again, i've experienced their impressive service both in the ground and up in the air. we checked in online in the morning of the 14th, chose our seats and printed our receipts.  as advised by my cousin, we went for the tail end of the plane - the last three rows where there are only two seats on each window.  that was a good choice because we didn't have anybody else next to us and the loo was just a few steps away - perfect for preggy me!  also, the cabin crews usually stay in the galley so whenever i needed something like a glass of water or a piece of fruit, they can easily get to me.  or i can walk over to them to stretch my legs, too. 

since we checked in online, we didn't have to queue with the rest of the passengers (i swear, the line was so loooonnngggg!) and just approached counter 12.  we submitted our travel docs, checked in our luggage and we were done in no time.  as always, checking in with Emirates is a breeze. i was impressed, too that they took care of us quite well as our names were marked in their list.  you see, a few days before our flight, i called their airport services and asked for their advise on how i'd carry the prescribed tubes of natural progesterone with me which all must be kept cool.  i spoke to Anne, who was very efficient and made sure my check in was hassle free. she advised us to use dry ice and put it in a cooler for check in. a few hours before we left home, she even called us to check on how the medications were packed and asked if we needed anything else. when we were checking in, another ground staff approached us too see if everything is ok because they said if i needed to carry one with me to use on board, they would advise the purser of the plane immediately so that i can be attended to promptly when it's time to use my Crinone during the flight. wow, talk about customer service! i give them 5 stars for that!

lucky for us, too because my cousin was a crew in our flight. during her breaks, she would come by our seats and check on how we're doing.  and she even steamed a cup of milk for me to keep me warm and comfy!  despite the flight being bumpy and the absence of a foot rest (cost cutting measures, you know), our flying experience was enjoyable! i didn't get any sleep as i have been munching on fruits and crackers and drinking loads of water, which made me go on a number of trips to the loo, so i just watched Eagle Eye, Wild Child and Get Smart to keep me entertained. 

when we landed in Dubai, it was freezing.  temp was about 19 degrees and it was rainy.  it felt like Manila in the evenings where the air was cool, especially when it rained. oh gosh, i'm starting to miss home again and i just got back :(

anyway, still more stories to come so watch out. 

Sunday, January 4, 2009

a delinquent blogger what i am. yes, i'm such a bad blogger, and i admit it shamefully!

i've been so lazy the last few weeks. even though there are lots of stories to tell and updates to share, i couldn't find time to sit and blog away. i'm always distracted by the telly, to be honest. such a lousy excuse, i know, but that's the truth.

now that the wifi connection here at home is up and running, i may just find myself blogging again. at least i can connect while staying in bed...that's very tempting! no more getting up and moving to the living room area to surf. yey!

i owe you these stories, and inshallah, i finish them all before i head back to work:
1.) Macau & HK stories
2.) our holiday celebrations
3.) updates on our vacay
4.) milestones on our pregnancy

and before i forget, it was nice seeing you Jody at Crustasia in Rockwell. you look younger in person :) and your kids are so adorable, too.

hope everyone had a great holiday. till my next post!