Third grade

Technically, we already finished the first week of school. Literally, though, since there is a typhoon and rains have been non-stop, classes have been suspended for three days now. So really, we were in school, what, 3 hours this week.

We arrived a little later than usual on this first day of classes so I wasn’t able to go inside the classroom with her and take her photos. Which is just too well since she’s not a small girl anymore (tissue please, this is the part where I want to bawl like a baby 😦 ) Since the teacher was already inside, and the kids were pretty much settled down, I was reduced to taking photos from beyond the glass windows (which renders photos grainy and all).

It was also a mark of how the kids are growing and maturing that they were quieter and more subdued on the first day of class instead of running around and talking at the top of their lungs.

Also, Mischa’s school is adjusting to the new cycle of the academic year that starts mid-year, instead of the traditional June. Classes would then be off around the 3rd week of May, instead of the usual March. So I don’t really know what our summer next year would be like.

House of Lasagna

After the kids’ check up and flu vaccines last Saturday, we passed by the mall (as usual) primarily to buy some last minute stuff for school. But…lunch first.

We chanced upon the House of Lasagna, which was fairly new in the MOA Eats section. And can you guess what we had? Harhar. Lasagna of course! But kids still chose their Southern Fried Chicken. Being fried chicken experts, this was a letdown, especially for Ate Mischa. She was asking if the restaurant even used salt for the dish. True enough, it was bland, even with the gravy. Maxine was happy with the unlimited bread.

I had the chicken lasagna, while the hubby had pesto. They looked kinda the same, right? I was actually gunning for the 3-cheese dish, but they didn’t have it, so I made do with this one. Both were good, considering lasagna is their bread and butter. I would have expected nothing else. Service was on the slow side, good thing we weren’t that hungry. Or maybe it’s because of all the bread they kept refilling on our table. Lol.

We went home with full, warm tummies. Lasagna just does that to you. Comfort food at its best.

Acacia Hotel

This is our last hurrah for this summer vacation courtesy of good ol’ Mama. Thank you Mama! Our requirements this time were simple: Mischa and Maxine have to swim, and the place mustn’t be too far because we didn’t want to drive all the way. So I chose from among nearby hotels (from our place), and we ended up at Acacia Hotel.

I didn’t get to take a picture of the lobby but it looks a lot of awesome to me. With its veeeerrry high ceilings and wide expanse, it shouts of elegance and class. We got connecting rooms, and from check in to check out, everything was a breeze. We loved their attentive and accommodating staff. And we absolutely loved our room! It has a great view of the Alabang business district.

Included in the room package are welcome drinks, in which case you have a choice of sparkling wine or pandan juice. We also had vouchers for tablea ensaymada and unlimited coffee, which we sadly weren’t able to avail of.

Then it was down to swimming business for that afternoon and the next morning.

It was so cold and windy, but nothing will stop the kids haha! Not even Maxine’s lips which keep on turning blue after a few minutes in the water that we had to get her off and warm her up for a bit before getting her back in the water.

We mostly ate inside the hotel. We were supposed to go out for dinner Saturday night but it rained so we stayed in. Their buffet selection was also quite good-enough choices so that you don’t get too umay. It was not too pricey which was the best thing hehe. Morning called for room service because we were too lazy. The best was getting upgraded from buffet breakfast (supposedly included in the package) to buffet lunch. Wheeee, we didn’t have to hurry and wake up early so we can catch up on breakfast.

We had one of the best vacations here. I like that everything was unhurried, we were taken cared of very very well by Southern hospitality, and we were home in about 10 minutes!

Basil

Rainy nights call for Thai food! The spice and flavor which made this cuisine famous would surely heat up and cheer up gloomy nights. This new restaurant in MOA did just that after we finished our dinner here. It was a weekday, and as I said, a rainy one at that, and the place was practically empty. I liked its modern vibe, with a smattering of Thai elements, but still has some Filipino aura to it. Maybe it’s the wood, or the plain and obvious hospitality and warmth of the staff. Whatever it was, it was a great dining experience.

Their servings were huge (hence price was not cheap) so we couldn’t order a lot. We settled for our favorites, his green curry chicken, and my pad thai. We washed it down with basil lemon shake and Thai iced tea.

Green Chicken Curry

Pad Thai

Lime Basil Shake and Thai Iced Tea

Bakhawan Eco-Park

I went back to Aklan after a year to continue one of our advocacies for the local government unit. Last time, I went here and didn’t have time to go to one of the province’s famed attraction, the Bakhawan Eco-Park. A visit to the latter deserves maybe a whole afternoon depending on how much time you want to spend at its penultimate spot. Though I wasn’t much of hiking/nature kind of gal, I enjoyed myself here. Located at New Buswang, one of the coastal barangays of the capital town of Kalibo. The wide expanse of mangrove forest was a rehabilitation project in the 1990s, and has saved the townspeople from floods and other effects of strong typhoons.

It was a long trek on a man-made wooden pathway spanning a little more than a kilometre. One would pass by mud crab and fish pens, and acres of mangroves. Every few hundred meters or so are sheds with benches where one can catch their breaths or just enjoy the stillness of it all. There is a even a camp site for those who wish to pitch tents and spend the night there. I and some of my colleagues who were with me enjoyed the leisurely walk while listening to sounds of chirping birds and crickets. What made my heart jump for a few minutes was the rickety wooden bridge we had to cross to get over the other side of the river cutting through the forest. Nyay!

But the view of the sandbar and the open sea beyond more than made up my moments of anxiety! God’s creation never fails to amaze! We spent a good half hour just sitting on huts just enjoying the breeze and waves as they splashed the shoreline. As it was getting dark, we made our way back as dusk was slowly creeping its way in.