I was happy to see a newly opened restaurants in one of the fairly old malls near our place. Because it has been in existence for sometime (read: a few decades), most of the establishments there are the run of the mill restaurants. Maybe it is also because the mall-goers are your typical suburban homeowners who are just there for the convenience of the location, and are not looking for something new. So imagine my surprise when I saw Hukad by the Golden Cowrie. I gather that it had its beginnings in Cebu, and is now available in selected areas in the Metro. And is Cebuano cuisine known for? Lechon!!

But aside from the star of the Filipino table, lechon, the restaurants offers traditional, but tasty and sumptuous Filipino cuisine. And because we have a tendency to tone down taste (less salt and other pampalasa) of our cooking at home, I tend to have this feeling of being deprived. And so I compensate when we are outing out, and I order to my heart’s content, much to the chagrin of the health-conscious husband. I liked Hukad’s food so much that I dragged my parents here to eat the day after the hubby and kids dined here. These are what we had, which made my heart flipflopped :))

Baked scallops



Escabecheng tanigue

Fried tuna fingers


Lechon belly

Toy shopping

So many toys, so little time. A kids’ version of heaven on Earth.

It’s a good thing they have an indulgent and able Ninong. Or else, they’ll be stuck with Mommy on a budget and a Daddy on a mission to lessen clutter at home. Haha. Oh well, this is so once in a blue moon that they get to choose what they want. I don’t think one shopping binge will spoil them for life. Thank you Ninong!.




Tuan Tuan Chinese Brasserie

In the Philippines, Christmas season, including the spillover days after New Year, is all about food. If I had been a diet fanatic or health buff, I would have committed suicide. lol. Kidding aside, since it is a time for various family gatherings and celebrations left and right (yeah because we have branches on all sides of the family, circle of friends, colleagues, etc.).

Tuan Tuan Chinese Brasserie is one of the restaurants we binged on this holiday. And we sort of celebrated in advance Ma and Dad’s 45th anniversary. I would say that the Chinese Hongkong style comfort food they is…comforting. Hehe. I had noodles of course. Noodles make the world go round for me.

Cantonese Seafood Pan Fried Noodles


Baked almond fish fillet with pesto sauce

Chao Chou Style Dried Fish and Minced Pork Soup

Hello Kitty and friends fashion show

The little girls got lucky again because they got to watch another live show, this time Hello Kitty and friends. I am not so much a fan of the girly cat but I would always take the chance to spend quality time with my babies. And who can say no to free tickets? lol.

They didn’t delight in it as much as they did with the Disney on Ice, probably because Mickey really does have quite a pull with kids. What I liked about the show was the interactive parts when they engage and let the audience join in some parts of the script. There were huge bouncy, lightweight balls that the kids can catch and pass on, then there were the long swaths of cloth that each had to hold so that Kitty can do her fashion pieces.

Frankly, I dozed off on some parts, still I was happy because I didn’t have this much opportunities as a kid growing up. We stayed pretty much at home, going out just to visit family at their homes, but never going out as much as we do now. You could say I am living a second life, and I cannot be more thankful for it.







Wildflour Cafe+Bakery

Okay so this is my first time in this acclaimed breakfast place because there’s no branch in the south. Since we were watching a show in Ortigas last New Year, we decided to have brunch (because we stayed up late for New Year’s Eve and we were lazy enough to prepare our own breakfast) at the nearest mall. As it was New Year’s Day, most of the restaurants are closed at 10:00 a.m. and this was the only one open.

The only items available that time were breakfast fare and so we were not able to sample their entrees. It was okay but I was kinda looking for carbo. Anyway, I ended up with the fundido, and some of the mac and cheese, which is great at the first few bites but maybe because I had too much cheese that I started to get umay.

In general, everything was a bit better than good, but it was kind of expensive for the quantity and quality. I got sad because it didn’t live up to the hype for me. Maybe it’ll grow on me once I got a taste of the main dishes.

Complimentary baguette (served hot and fresh!) with salted butter

Ham and Mushrooms on Toast

Chia Bowl

Chorizo Fundido

Fluffy pancakes with blueberry and lemon spread

Mac and cheese

My scratch map

I super duper love this scratch map!!! One of the best gifts I’ve received this season. Thank you baby bro!


After (as of December 2016)

Can’t wait to scratch some more as I travel the world! So far scratched off and “unearthed” 12 countries, including the Philippines of course. I’m not sure if I can scratch countries where technically I’ve set foot on but only because I had layovers, but haven’t gone outside the airport (Japan, Qatar and Jordan). Oh well, I know in time, I’ll reveal more and I am soooo excited!

Lola Noning’s birthday

Mike’s Auntie Noning’s (father-in-law’s eldest sister) birthday falls on New Year’s day. It has become a tradition in their family to spend the first day of the year together to celebrate the two events. We try as much as we can to join them although their family house is all the way to Novaliches. Their family is huge, and I can’t personally remember everyone even after eight years of being together, but there’s always new additions. This year, the party is more fun because aside from the food, they infused games for kids.