Dec 22, 2010


I've been longing for a full body massage since the beginning of this month. Schedule had been so very busy for me the previous months plus a big event lined up for me on the second week of the December add up the Holiday season.Whew!

Can somebody treat me for a nice and relaxing massage?

Wait no more! Just yesterday, I had a taste of what they call a Swedish Massage for FREE!

I was not impressed at first. I am used to hard massages like the traditional HILOT, not until I had my left arms finished.

Swedish Massage got me on my arms

For you massage virgins, Swedish Massage is the way to go, especially if it is your first time at a spa. 

During Swedish Massage, massage therapists use massage oils to facilitate smooth, gliding strokes called effleurage. Other classic Swedish Massage moves inlcudes kneading friction, stretching and (sometimes) tapping.

Swedish massage uses firm but gentle pressure to promote relaxation, ease muscle tension and create other health benefit.

Relaxation for FREE

Commonly, during your Swedish Massage session, you are nude under a towel or sheet lying down; but for my case, since it is free, I am on a sitting position with my clothes on. It must be more relaxing when your lying down and nude, must try that one soon.

Again, Swedish Massage is best for first timers but if you had been going in and out of spa for times already, you might not be happy with the gently and smooth strokes you will be getting from this particular type of massage.

a Gentle Head Massage

Did i mentioned I had it for FREE? Yes, I got from the Stratford International School Swedish Massage Students under the program of Technical Education and Skills Development Authority or popularly known as TESDA. They need to massage number of people as part of their On-the-Job Training.

Special thank you to JOHN MICHAEL- the trainee Massage Therapist 
and to Laurienz for these camera phone photos.

Dec 11, 2010

Foodie Critic - Chicharong Hito @ BAR_KO

In a street where a line of food houses offering delicious barbecue to crave for, BAR_ko may look like one of the others. But wait! As we always say, DO NOT JUDGE THE BOOK BY ITS COVER

BAR_ko: Dine & Drink Restaurant is one of the food havens in Tiongson Arcade, Barangay Lagao, General Santos City. This unassuming place offers grilled chows like their delectable pork and chicken barbecue and seafoods.

the garlicky grilled panga

One of their best sellers is the Chicharong Hito which is to crave for. Even as I write this, I am salivating with just the thought of eating there again. The Chicharing Hito just got the right crisp on the outside and mouthwatering once you put it in your mouth. A special tasty vinegar sauce that comes with it gives an extra ooomph to the Chicharong Hito. Whether you are up for a drinking spree or food tip, Chicharong Hito is both good as "PULUTAN" or "ULAM".

the Chicharong Hito to die for

The next time you pass by Tiongson Arcade in Lagao, look for BAR_KO and have a taste of their CHICHARONG HITO! If your lucky enough, the proprietor himself ARVEIN JOHN LLIDO might be preparing it for you or his famous mom the City Councilor - Hon. Virgie Llido might be entertaining you.

the amiable Bar_Ko proprietor: Arvein John Llido

Oct 25, 2010


Less than 50% of the total registered voters turned out in my village, yet at 4:00 o'clock in the morning the canvassing is not halfway through. I wonder why. 

FLASHBACK. A day before, every streets in our village became unusually busy with suspicious people lurking, some on their foot and mostly on a motorcycle with an endless supply of gasoline trying to complete the final phase of their EVIL plan. On the other side, people trying to prevent these mischievous activities are outnumbered, literally letting them eat the DUST.

I am one of those who still believe that the FILIPINOS still have a big chance of reforming its POLITICAL SYSTEM. I am one of the few believers of the possibility of CLEAN ELECTIONS until today.

I came to realization, that most people here in our village do not want HONEST leaders, they wanted leaders who would think of their PERSONAL GAIN first above anything else. They do not want leaders who has good moral values but those who can give in and join them during their drinking and gambling sessions on the streets. They do not want a leader who can DISCIPLINE and put things in ORDER but still prefers those who tolerate their wrong doings. They do not want leaders who will work WITH them but those who will let them work FOR them. They do not care if they have an absentee leader as long as they can get money from them.

Obviously, I am sad. It is very depressing to know that people prefer two hundred pesos over a good leadership for three years. YOU. Yes you who exhange your vote over a hundred or two pesos, do not blame the government if you will experience RED TAPE in one of your dealings with the barangay. Do you think you will get special treatment because of what you've done? Think twice. They'll never remember your face. Worst, if you'll demand they will be answering you back with: "NABAYRAN NA KA NAMU!". Do not demand for better roads, it is the last thing on their mind. Do not expect to see your leader in his three-year term, he is too busy for you.

If you want a clean and good governance, you should do have done your part. Do not make decisions that you will later regret.

To you whom I share the same sentiment, let us not allow that the corrupt system swallow us. Let us stick to our principle. One or two of our kind can still make that little difference.

“Corruption is authority plus monopoly minus transparency.”

Oct 4, 2010


This is a collaborative writing of the author and her sister Lavinia for the World Teacher's Day Celebration. 

As we celebrate with the world a meaningful Teachers Day allow me to share with you the life of the greatest teacher I’ve known. He is our teacher and our hero. He is a spiritual and wisdom teacher who taught in parables and proverbs. As a teacher, He called His 12 disciples and gradually prepared them to understand the purpose of His mission. Some came to him enthusiastically while some doubted and questioned His abilities. Amidst all these, he continued his purpose on earth. 

Not like our teachers now a day, Jesus Christ had no advanced degree, no classroom, and not even an academia with formal degree. Technically He doesn’t fit the definition of a teacher. Yet I still consider him as the greatest teacher of all times. Why? One, He himself had been taught. He knew how important it was to listen. Second, He knew how to make things interesting to people. He explained things in a simple and clear way. He took time to teach grownups and even little children even if he was too busy.

They said that A good teacher is like a candle - it consumes itself to light the way for others”. Most teachers become selfless for their students. I even know of some, who stayed single because of their passion to their profession.

It is about time, to pay tribute to a less appreciated job in the world! As one of Americas most quoted writer William Arthur Lard puts it “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it”. It is indeed high time to express our THANK YOUS.

To us students, let us remember that there are more presents aside from the flowers and the material things that we give our teachers. Huwag po nating alisin ang ating respeto at paggalang sa kanila. At ang higit na makakapagpasaya sa kanila ay kung makikita nila tayo baling araw na matagumpay sa mga larangang ating tinahak!

Teaching is one of the noblest professions I know. To all the teachers, you did not just give tests but share life’s lessons to us. Not just grading us but guiding us, as we go in and out of the four walls of the classroom. Not only checking our attendance but also giving us time to grow and be the best we can be. Your work didn’t stop from giving us lectures and assignments but it transcends boundaries of ignorance and illiteracy. You added colors in us so we may live our lives to the fullest with great pride and sense of fulfillment. I know you care a lot about us. We are not just your students but you consider us as your own. Someday we’ll be able to bring back the goodness you gave us. And I hope time come that you’ll be proud to say that we are your life’s greatest achievements. 

Together, let us all give around of applause for our unsung HEROES!

Aug 23, 2010

MY 10-Day Affair with i-PHONE

Note: this is not a technical review of iPhone product. It is just another love story.

It all started with me, winning a Belkin Grip Vector from's 1st Year Blogversary Raffle. Not at all a techie, much more savvy at that, I was'nt too happy with the prize simply because I do not own an iPHONE. I was eyeing for a book or a shirt that night. Then, the optimistic in me thought, "IT'S A SIGN. A SIGN THAT I WILL HAVE MY IPHONE SOON!"

"I'll be going home soon, how would you like to have blackberry?", my favorite aunt said while we were having one of those YM sessions. I was quiet excited for I might be getting my very own Blackberry Phone which is extremely hot these days. 

August 13, 2010, Day 1 with the iPhone. Expecting to finally get the blackberry i was told, my aunt changed her mind in giving me her Blackberry and lent me her 32-gig iPHONE instead. "While I am still here(Gensan), you may use that", she said. Hoping that she will still change her mind and give me the iPHONE, I slipped the sleek phone to my Belkin Grip Vector and boy, they are really meant to be. From that day on, I fell in love with the iPhone.

The 4.5 inches long and 2.31 inches wide phone weights 4.8 ounces. You must already know this but a cellphone and mobile computer rolled in one, drove me crazily inlove. If I can easily send text and can dial someones number without a fuzz, thats already okay with me. Plus you throw in a Wifi-able program in your 3.5-inch (diagonal) widescreen Multi-Touch display is an absolute cloud 9 for an internet dependent being, which I am becoming. 

Today, is the last day with the iPHONE. I have to give it back to its original master. Honestly, I cannot let go of it but I do not have a choice. I'll never forget my 10 days having you around. The memories we shared cannot be deleted. Goodbye to you! Thanks for the 10 fun days with you!

making most of our last night together

Jul 27, 2010

the CONVENIENCE of the backyard MALUNGGAY

Before we say goodbye to the Nutrition Month, which falls every July, let me give you a special NUTRITION MONTH entry.

Rainy days is officially on for this tropical country. It is nice to include a soup dish in every meal to invigorate our wet and tired human bodies after a hard days work. In one of those type of days, I decided to prepare a simple "TINOLANG ISDA" or fish soup. Since it is raining hard, I was too lazy to go buy some vegetables to complete the soup, thank goodness for the MALUNGGAY from our backyard to the rescue.

moringa leaves

Known as an excellent source of nutrition and a natural energy booster, Malunggay or Moringa oleifera Lam is loaded with nutrients, vitamins and amino acids. In the Philippines, pregnant women and nursing mothers are advised to have a daily dose of soup with young malunggay leaves for it is helpful in increasing breast milk in the breastfeeding months. It also provides nearly all of the woman's daily iron and calcium needs during those stages.

Aside from its leaves and bods, other parts of Moringa have different uses as well. Commercially, the BEN OIL extracted from flowers can be used as illuminant, ointment base, and absorbent in the enfleurage process of extracting volatile oils from flowers. The oil, applied locally, has also been helpful for arthritic pains, rheumatic and gouty joints.

Our grannies made full use of the Malunggay in their backyard, by doing the following:
  •  Pods for intestinal parasitism.
  • Constipation: Leaves and fruit
  •  Decoction of boiled roots used to wash sores and ulcers.
  •  Decoction of the bark used for excitement, restlessness.
  • Pounded roots used as poultice for inflammatory swelling.
  • Juice of roots is used for otalgia.
  • Seeds for hypertension, gout, asthma, hiccups, and as a diuretic.
  •  Juice of the root with milk used for asthma, hiccups, gout, lumbago.
  •  Poultice of leaves applied for glandular swelling.
  •  Pounded fresh leaves mixed with coconut oil applied to wounds and cuts.
  • The flowers boiled with soy milk thought to have aphrodisiac quality.
                                                                             Source: STUARTXCHANGE

As I was preparing the dish, I came to the realization, that poverty is not the ultimate reason for malnutrition and hunger. Growing vegetables in the backyard is only one of the easy ways to hinder the growing number of unhealthy children in the world. Moringa is one of the many vegetables that can be grown in our backyards or in pots (if you lack space). 

Let us not blame each other for what is happening with the world, better start doing something for the betterment of it.

Jul 20, 2010

Foodie XPRMNT - Chowking Inspired CRISPY FISH FILLET

Everytime I dine at Chowking, it's their Crispy Fish Fillet that I always go for. Its exact crispiness on the  outside did not dried up the juices of the fish. The white sauce it comes with is the perfect partner, complementing the fillet very well.

In one of my not so lazy days, I decided to prepare my version of Crispy fish Fillet for dinner. Praying for perfection, I came up with this:

For the not so master cooks like me, it is advised to have your fish, fillet at the market. For this one, I used TUNA BELLY (which is originally for the KINILAW of my papa...sssssshhhhh). Here are the ingredients used: fish fillet, bread crumbs, salt, pepper and other spices to taste and beaten egg. First things first, marinate your fish with salt, pepper and other spices you like, add the beaten egg. Then refrigerate it for 15 minutes. Then, roll it to the bread crumbs. Refrigerate for another 15minutes and it will be ready for frying. Insider tip: DO NOT FRY THE FISH FOR LONG, IT MAY DRY UP THE FISH. Once they are golden brown, take it out of the pan.

For the white sauce, you only need chopped garlic, parsley and mayonnaise. Put them together and VIOLA, you get your home made white sauce.

Perfect for a weekend meal with your family.

Bon apetit!

Jul 11, 2010

Foodie Critic - CALDA vs MAMMA MARIAS

 If you had been going around General Santos City lately, you must have noticed that there are lots of FOOD JOINTS sprouting like mushrooms. Another sign that the Tuna Capital of the Philippines is indeed progressing. Two places that are claiming popularity these days are the Pizza Joints-Calda Pizza and Mamma Maria's Pizzeria.

Both serve  affordable, large pizzas reaching up to 36 inches with different toppings to choose from. In case you been out of this planet and didn't heard about these two pizza joints, let me compare the two according to AMBIANCE, SERVING STAFF and FOOD.

Click this link to read more of my criticism.

Jun 23, 2010

Sundays @ the Park - LOVERS

I am a practicing Catholic. My family attend mass every sunday. Sunday is always a family day. Since our chapel does not have regular mass, we usually attend mass at Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage Parish downtown

OLPGVP for us in Gensan is located in front of the Public Park. Now that it has been newly renovated more people go and visit the park. Loners and groups. Young and old. Happy and Sad go there. It is so nice to do people watching there as they somehow unveil their life story.

I will be having a special mini-series of Sundays @ the Park posts with features pictures of the week.

This time I'll be making a special on Lovers at the Park.

Enjoy the Spring of Love and Youth, to some good angel leave the rest; For Time will teach thee soon the truth, there are no birds in last year's nest!

-- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

They say, as people mature, they also grow tired of expressing their emotions especially when it comes to love. Noticing the captured lovers, they all are - young lovers. You will rarely see older people going out and expressing their love publicly and obviously you will rarely see them sitting sweetly  in one of these park benches or walking holding hands. Such a sad thought. Is love for the young alone? Or the elders have better things to do than making nonsense public display of affection?

Here's another famous love quote from a famous Beatles Member  for my take:

Love is a promise;
love is a souvenir, 
once given never forgotten, 
never let it disappear.

~ John Lennon

Spread the love everyone!

Jun 19, 2010

Happy Day to all the Real FATHERS!

This is my second repost from the very influential Bro. Bo which is timely for 
the father's day celebration. The first was all about being happy. (Click to read)

This post is not all about skepticism but facing the reality. Consider yourself lucky if you have a dad or a husband who does not have the traits that will be mentioned. 

Here you go, enjoy!

From: Are you a Real Man?

By: Bo Sanchez

I’m going to be very blunt here.

Do you know why the world is in crisis today?

I’ll tell you why: Because men don’t know how to become real men.

Because fathers don’t train their sons how to live life.

Because fathers don’t raise their sons in the ways of the Lord.

Because fathers don’t mentor their sons to take responsibility.

Because fathers don’t teach their sons how to relate to women.

Because fathers don’t love and protect their wives.

Because fathers don’t lead their families towards a vision.

They’re cowards. They’re macho on the outside but flakes on the inside. They’re irresponsible. They’re passive. They’re parasitic jello.

Fathers don’t really “father” their kids on a daily basis. They leave childrearing to the mothers. They have no vision for their families.

Make no mistake about it. Families are in crisis today because we lack godly husbands and godly fathers.

The crisis of the world today is a crisis for manhood.

Let me give you this set of facts you may not know:

· Men commit 90% of major crimes.

· Men commit 100% of all rapes.

· Men commit 95% of all thefts.

· Men commit 91% of all offences against the family.

· Men commit 94% of all drunk drivers.

In one study, they asked fathers how much time they spent with their kids.

They were very honest and apologized that because of their busy schedule, they could only spend 15 minutes a day with their kids. After the interview, these same fathers were equipped with audio recorders—and for the next few days—the behavioural scientists measured the actual time they spent with their children. Average time a father spends with kids? 45 seconds a day.

No joke.

By the way, raising your children isn’t just about spending time with them. A father could be spending time with his children watching TV. Hearts don’t engage when you sit passively in front of the idiot box.

Here are the three things fathers need to do with their kids.

First, you bond with them.

Play with them. Laugh with them. Do things they enjoy doing. Because my sons are small, I play their games, no matter how silly they seem to me. “Waste” your time with them, doing what you may consider totally unproductive. In reality, playing with your kids is the most productive thing you can ever do as a human being.

Second, you teach values.

Yes guys, you actually open your lips. Not classroom lectures, mind you. But you tell stories. Exciting, inspiring stories. Don’t leave this to Mom. Men, pick good books and read stories to your sons. Stories of courage. Stories of service. Stories of heroism. Stories about God.

Third, you pray together.

That’s right, Dads. Don’t let Mom be the priestess at home. You’re the priest of the family, so act like one. On Judgment Day, God won’t first ask the mother, “Did you bring your family closer to Me?” He’ll ask this important question to Dad first. Fathers, let your children watch you pray and see your heart for the Lord.

How can you do all these three assignments if you don’t spend at least a weekly date with each of your kids?

Fatherhood isn’t for wimps. It’s requires men of steel. It requires rocklike warriors totally committed to winning the battle for the hearts of their children.

Will you be a real man?

Now let me congratulate all the fathers who had won the hearts of their children.

Happy Father's Day! 

Jun 9, 2010

President Noynoy

Three days before we celebrate our nth Independence Day, our next President and Vice-President were finally proclaimed by the Philippine Congress.

Inspite of the Election Fraud issues and concerns raised, the Filipino will now have a new Tandem to lead our disease stricken country.

I had goosebumps watching the Proclamation. I voted for Noynoy. I was a visible supporter. Noynoy is my president and by the end of this month, Noynoy will finally be our President.

President Noy during his GENSAN visit

It is a refreshing thought, to hear, see and read things about this historic event on a positive note. People went out of their way. Some even seized the day, all wore their happy faces which seem to be a sign of relief that finally for a long period of time the real voice of the people are heard.

As for the CYNICAL, lets keep them for balance. Their existence will serve as a driving force for the people we put in position to strive hard and do what they have to do. Anxiety and apprehension from some of us is normal, but they will be outnumbered by the TEAM OPTIMISTS who will keep on praying and working for a better Philippines.

Few political rivals give full support to the new administration. As to quote Sen. Jinggoy Estrada, "it is a friendlier administration(Aquino's) compared to the previous administration (GMA's)".

President Noy during his GENSAN visit

Welcome to a more HOPE FULL Philippines!

May 15, 2010


Ten minutes to midnight and here I go again with my endless Cravings... Checked the Fridge and guess what I whipped up:

my version of the Spinach Fettucini Carbonara

Trying out the San Remo Spinach Fettucini (that's why our pasta is GREEN), made an easy to cook Carbonara sauce. Topped with cheese and bacon, we are good to GO!.. 

As professional chefs usually say, BON APETIT!