I'm a self-confessed shopaholic.

I'm able to control myself a whole lot better now (no more wild credit card bills!), but I still love treating myself to something new every payday. We all deserve a little treat after working hard all month, right?

I've always loved bath products more than makeup so I always look for new body scrubs, body washes, and soaps to try. It's a bit of an adventure because I have sensitive skin, but thank God my skin asthma's been behaving lately.

One Instagram shop that I've been trolling lately is @phinaslittlefactory. I love that all their products are handmade! They're all handcrafted in the Philippines and you can just feel the care that goes into each product. Their packaging? Simple yet classy.


I haven't tried all of Ms. Phina's products just yet, but so far I'm loving these two: the Breakfast Scrub and the Salted Caramel glycerin soap. Sounds delicious, right? Well, I did want to taste them, but that would be crazy. I swear though, they smell absolutely divine.

Breakfast Scrub



The Breakfast Scrub is my favorite weekly ritual. I only use it once a week because I'm usually in a rush and don't have time to dawdle in the bathroom. I, however, make sure to set aside one evening once a week when I won't do anything but pamper myself in the bath.

That's when I whip out the Breakfast Scrub and slough away all my dead skin cells and stress. I don't know how anyone can still be stressed after getting a whiff of this scrub.

It has pure olive oil and honey, so it leaves my sensitive skin feeling soft and smooth after each bath. I also love how the scent sticks to my skin for quite a while. Makes me smell yummy!

Salted Caramel Glycerin Soap



The salted caramel soap is a pure vegetable glycerin soap. That means there's nothing but the good stuff in there. If you're a salted caramel ice cream lover, this one's an absolute must try. It smells heavenly!

I like how this soap mildly cleanses and exfoliates my skin - perfect for when I'm in a rush!

Check out the photo above. It says that the sea salt content in this soap helps detoxify your skin. The turmeric content on the other hand can help slow down cell damage. It can also help with inflammatory skin conditions like acne, dry skin, psoriasis, and eczema.

It says there that it can help with acne, but I'm not sure if it works. My face is doing so much better now, and I'm afraid to try anything new. Hehe! If you've tried it on your face, or know of someone who has, and had gotten great results, please let me know and I might find the courage to do the same. :)

Phina's Little Factory

Aside from Instagram, Phina's Little Factory also has a Facebook Page that you can check out for regular updates.

They accept payments through bank deposits (BDO & BPI), but since I rarely leave the house nowadays, I like to buy my fix of PLF (Phina's Little Factory) products through Seek the Uniq - they accept credit card and Paypal payments!

Interested in getting some Phina's Little Factory goodies from Seek the Uniq? Use THIS LINK so you can get a 10% discount. ♥
Last week, I received a gift from Robinsons Malls. It was in a red box and had a gold ribbon. I personally love pink, but the red and gold combination is one that I love.


So, what was in the gift box?... My very own Robinsons Malls VIP card!


Formerly known as the Robinsons Malls Privilege Card, the new and improved VIP Card comes with more features and benefits because Robinsons Malls wants us to feel like true VIPs.


The new VIP Card comes with benefits such as FREE use of the Pay CR Lounge in Robinsons Galleria, having an express lane at Robinsons Movieworld in Robinsons Galleria, VIP seats at special events, and more! 

The card can also get you discounts at lots of partner establishments like KFC, Max's, Pizza Hut, Italiannis, Lay Bare, Adidas, Converse, Lacoste, and Nike Forum to name a few. The list of partners is long. As in 600+ long. Hehe!

Existing Robinsons Malls Privilege Card members can claim their new VIP Card until March 1st of 2017.

If you're interested in becoming a VIP, the purchase requirements are as follows:

1. P5,000 - Galleria, Manila, Magnolia, Metro East, Forum
2. P3,000 - Starmills Pampanga, Angeles, Malolos, Ilocos, Pangasinan, Santiago, Las Piñas, Antipolo, Imus, Dasma, Lipa, Tagaytay, Los Baños, Palawan, Cebu, Bacolod, Iloilo, Dumaguete, Roxas, Butuan, GenSan, and Galleria Cebu

You can download the list of privileges & discounts from www.robinsonsmalls.com or from the Robinsons Malls App.


And now, our last stop from last Saturday's food trip in Robinsons Antipolo: Marison's.

I've actually gotten several IG and Twitter comments from Marison's in the past. So even before the food trip, I already knew of them. And because of that, I was extremely excited to finally be able to sample what they had to offer.

Now let me just say this outright: I'm not the type that's particularly drawn to Filipino food. I don't know what it is about me, I love our country and all, but there's just no pull. I love the regular "silog" dishes (haha!) and of course, sinigang, but that's pretty much it.

I was included in the last group that dined in Marison's. You'd think we'd be facing a table of leftovers (you know, being last and all), but the food just kept coming. We got to chill with the owner, Ms. Marison, and I'd say it was the perfect end to an extremely fun and filling food trip.

So, why don't I show you some of what was served to us and let you know what I thought of 'em?

Bicol Express
Bicol Express. This particular Bicol Express isn't on their official menu yet. Instead of the regular fare, they used Angus beef (yes, you read that right), and there's a "dynamite" type of pepper that had quesong puti (white cheese) inside.

I can't say I've eaten a lot of Bicol Express in my life time, but this one's an absolute must try. The Angus beef was ultra tender and the spiciness was just right for a Bicol Express noob like me.

Definitely worth trying once it's available on their menu.

Sinaing na Buntot ng Tuna - P430
Sinaing na Buntot ng Tuna. I don't know how to translate that in English, but essentially, it's the tail part of a tuna and it's yummy. I mean, how can you go wrong with tuna? Hehe!

They deep fried the tuna first and then they served it with some secret sauce and bits of crunchy pork.

Molo Soup - P110
Molo Soup. I didn't get to try the dumplings in the soup because they were prawn dumplings, but I did sample a little bit of the soup and it was really tasty. It was too bad I couldn't have more of it. Darned allergies.

Crispy Tripe Kare-Kare - 375
Crispy Tripe Kare-Kare. I'm not a big fan of kare-kare mainly because most of the ones I've tasted in the past needed bagoong (anchovies) in order for it to taste good. But I felt sorry for myself because I felt like my allergies were depriving me big time, so I tasted some of the kare-kare without the bagoong.

Here's my verdict: It's good even without the anchovies. And the beef? Oh so tender. It's literally falling apart.

I don't eat innards, so I didn't get to try the crispy tripe, but it does look crispy so I'm kinda regretting that I didn't try even just one piece of it.

Sotanghon Guisado - P200
Sotanghon Guisado. I didn't try this dish anymore because I already had the molo soup and I was afraid my allergies would act up (I was just in the hospital a few weeks ago because of a bad allergic reaction). Everyone around me were praising it though, so it's safe to say that it was also good.


Ms. Marison entertained us the whole time we were there and I got to ask her if they use her recipe for all the food that they serve. I was quite surprised when she said she didn't know how to cook, but she knew what good food tasted like. Well, that makes two of us Ms. Marison!

She knows good food and she helps in conceptualizing new flavors and dishes for their menu, so I say hats off to you, Ms. Marison!

The Robinsons Antipolo Branch is Marison's second one. It's located on the 2nd floor of the al fresco dining area, near the entrance.

Here's a photo of their menu. Just click on the image to view a larger version.


Their food portions are pretty big and are good for sharing. If you look close enough, you'll see a lot of interesting dishes. I know I'm interested, because I'm definitely going back to try the other dishes. I'm bringing my family with me next time, maybe on my in-laws' wedding anniversary next month. :)

Halo-Halo - P120
By the way, I heard lots of praises for Marison's halo-halo, but I didn't get to try it anymore because The Memet had already arrived to pick me up. :( I shall add this to my list of orders the next time I come back.


_____________________________
Marison's
http://www.marisonsph.com/
Twitter & Instagram: @MarisonsPH

Marison's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 
It's been a few months since Costa Coffee opened in Robinsons Place Antipolo. Actually, I've been there once before when The Memet and I stopped by for a quick bite after church on a Thursday night.

You gotta love the vibe. Red phone booth and all. Costa Coffee is originally from the UK and the cafe proudly exudes that vibe. #LondonStyle

Costa Coffee was our 2nd stop during our Antipolo Food Tour in Robinsons Place Antipolo last Saturday. The afternoon sun was in all its glory when we set foot in the cafe, but the ambiance was vibrant yet relaxed, and the aroma wafting around was inviting.


Ms. Corinne Milagan, Costa Coffee Philippines' General Manager, was there to welcome us.

Ms. Corinne Milagan, General Manager, Costa Coffee Philippines
She graciously answered any questions we had about Costa Coffee and made sure we were stuffed with the best that they had to offer.

I've always been fascinated with espresso machines, and it was to my delight when Ms. Corinne led us to their lean, mean (and shiny!) espresso machine.


She explained that it's custom-built for Costa Coffee. It's highly industrialized so it can be used for making one mean cup of espresso after another. And get this: it's made by the same folks who make the Ferrari. Cool, huh! I guess that explains the beautiful Ferrari red finish? Hehe.

The back of the espresso machine proves it's custom-made for Costa Coffee! ♥
Interested in a glimpse of the food that Costa Coffee has to offer? Yes, they serve sandwiches, salads, and pasta aside from their famous coffee. :)

Here are some photos for you. I did my best to do justice to them, and hope that they make your mouths water. No, I'm not being mean. Well, not really.







We were able to have a bite of each one. They were all good, but I'd have to say my top 2 favorites are the sandwiches in the last two photos: Beef Pastrami with Gherkins on Flat Bread (P170) and Grilled Chicken & Prosciutto Ham on Flat Bread (P180).

I haven't had a chance to sample their coffee yet. I always happen to visit Costa Coffee around late afternoon to really late in the evening, and I don't drink caffeinated coffee around that time anymore lest I'd be wide awake until sunrise the next day. Haha!

I have, however, tried their White Chocolate drink (both hot and iced) and it has instantly become a favorite. Imagine clasping a nice warm cup while sitting on a soft and cozy couch just waiting for the bed to call out for the night. That was my scenario last night when I had a cup to go, and I enjoyed every bit of it while I watched the stars quietly twinkle against the evening sky. (Poetic much? Haha!)

If you're the type that requires a good jolt of caffeine every morning, you might want to try their fabulous flat white. Yes, the beautiful handcrafted coffee that requires skill and talent to make. It has 3 shots of espresso, so you'll surely be awake. Ms Corinne specifically mentioned not to try it late in the afternoon or in the evening unless you're not planning on sleeping. Haha!

If you happen to be in Robinsons Antipolo, do drop by Costa Coffee and try out their food and coffee. (By the way, I also grabbed a quick bite of their Beef Pastrami last night. I was craving for it real bad. Haha!)

Costa Coffee is located at the ground floor al fresco dining area of Robinsons Antipolo. You can't miss it.

Follow them on social media too:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CostaCoffeePH/
Twitter & Instagram: @costacoffeeph

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Robinsons Malls
www.facebook.com/RobinsonsMalls
Twitter: @robinsonsmalls
Instagram: robinsonsmallsofficial

Robinsons Place Antipolo
www.facebook.com/RobPlaceAntipolo
Twitter: @RPAntipolo
Instagram: @robplaceantipolo

Costa Coffee Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 
Growing up in Saipan (a small island in the Pacific), my family and I frequented a local Japanese restaurant that served authentic Japanese food. I wasn't allergic to shrimp then, so I had a huge love for tempura. The Japanese folks who were regulars at that restaurant were cool people. I was just a kid then, and was hugely thrilled when one of the grandpops from the other table handed me an origami while they were on their way out.

I love Japanese food.

Now that I'm grown up and back in the Philippines (well, the grown up part is only partially true because I only made it a little over 5 feet - half an inch to be precise), I still have that distinct attachment to Japanese food. It is, however, a bit disappointing because not a lot of Japanese restaurants here serve affordable Japanese food that's authentic.

Fast forward to March 12th this year. (Just 4 days after my birthday!) Along with a group of bloggers, I headed to Robinsons Antipolo to embark on an afternoon of food tripping.

Kampai Sushi Bar was my first stop.



I've been to Robinsons Place Antipolo quite a number of times and I've seen Kampai every time I visited, but I never paid much attention to it because the place looked kinda small and I thought it was more a bar than a restaurant.

Well, imagine my surprise when I found out they actually had more space upstairs and - spoiler alert - they serve pretty good food too!





Doesn't the place look absolutely cozy? We interviewed a waiter for a bit and he mentioned that the 2nd floor was where teams of doctors and other professionals usually gather for a meal while having a meeting. 

Here's a peek at the goodies that were served to us:

Spicy Tuna Salad - P148
Spicy Tuna Salad. On a scale of 1-10, I'd probably rate the spiciness of this dish a 7. I can't say I have high tolerance for spicy food, but this one was okay - as long as you scrape off most of the stuff clinging to the tuna. Haha!

It tasted good though, so as soon as my tongue could take it again, I kept popping in a new one. Great appetizer good for 2-3 persons.

Crazy Maki - P198
Crazy Maki. Their crazy maki had salmon, tuna, and cucumber. Salmon and tuna are two of my favorite fishes, so this one was a personal favorite. Hehe! I can't recall exactly what was included on the topping, but that was yummy too.

Sashimi Platter - P358
Sashimi Platter. Who doesn't love fresh sashimi??? Well, okay. I know quite a lot of people who are not fans of raw food and to be honest, neither am I. Japanese fare is the only exception for me. Hehe! So long as it's fresh (and in moderation), sashimi is a great palate-pleaser.

Kampai Special Maki - P248
Kampai Special Maki. For the life of me, I can't recall the ingredients included in this dish, but that was probably because I was too busy stuffing my face. It had crunchy bits inside, and I believe that was salmon (or tuna) on top. It was really good maki.

All of their dishes were served with fresh ingredients. I know, because I'm allergic to seafood that's not fresh. Hehe!

If you're a fan of Japanese cuisine, Kampai Sushi Bar is definitely worth checking out. I wouldn't say it's a 100% authentic Japanese experience - more like slightly modern with a twist - but it's definitely a step up from other main stream Japanese restos in the same price range.

Did I mention they also carry Carmen's Best ice cream? No? Well, they do. Hehe!

Kampai Sushi Bar is located at the ground floor of the al fresco dining area in Robinsons Antipolo. They're open from 10am - 11pm, Sundays to Thursdays and 10am - 1am, Fridays to Saturdays.

Don't forget to check out Robinsons Place Antipolo's social media accounts for more information on Kampai Sushi Bar as well as the other cool restos.

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Robinsons Malls
Twitter: @robinsonsmalls
Instagram: @robinsonsmallsofficial

Robinsons Place Antipolo
Twitter: @RPAntipolo
Instagram: @robplaceantipolo

Kampai Sushi Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 


56 SM Supermalls across the country, from Baguio to Davao, began celebrating 30 years of fun shopping mania on February 29th of 2016. Ever since SM North Edsa, known as the third largest mall in the world, opened its doors in 1986, Filipinos have come to enjoy the unique family fun mall experience and affordable luxury shopping for all. Today, all SM lovers throughout the years are invited to visit their favorite SM mall to enjoy a day of fun finds, discounts, deals, and freebies.

To kickstart the exciting list of 30th Anniversary events, SM Center Angono paraded 30 Higantes, the iconic symbol of Angono's colorful tradition. The Higantes were dressed up in SM Center Angono's tenant uniforms like Jollibee, Chicken Deli, King Bee, Max's Restaurant, Classic Savory, as well as SM affiliates like ACE Hardware, Watsons, SM Savemore, and Mall Administration employees. Shoppers, especially the kids, happily took photos while they watched the 30 Higantes prance around the mall. 30th Anniversary balloons were also handed out to the shoppers while they enjoyed the parade.

Higantes in SM tenants' uniforms getting ready for their parade.

A shopper happily poses for the camera with a Higante.

Kids enjoy the 30 Higantes parade at SM Center Angono.

The 30 Higantes on Parade will be on tour around SM Malls in Rizal and Marikina on the following dates:

  • SM City Taytay - April 30
  • SM City Masinag - May 7
  • SM City Marikina - July 30
  • SM City San Mateo - August 29
Watch out for the next big 30 happenings in your nearest SM Supermall. For event schedules and more details, visit the SM Supermalls official website and follow SM Supermalls on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


* Press Release *




Memet

It's already the 20th of the month. I can't believe January's almost over and we'll soon be two months into the year.

What. Happened.

In case you noticed (it's fine if you didn't), I wasn't able to blog in the last few weeks of December. And yeah, this is my first blog post this year - and the first month of the year's almost over! Gah!

What happened is this: life happened.

December's a month for parties and reunions. Those happened. Then we also had our Year-End Thanksgiving at church - 2 weeks' worth of preparations. Oh, and The Memet and I went on our obligatory December 24 overnight trip, plus our annual trip to my grandma's place on January 1st. All that in between work and house chores and visitors.

The clincher? Our house help left on the evening of January 1st and never came back. She didn't do laundry for 2 weeks, plus the house was a mess from the holidays. So yes, on the first week of January 2016, my life was a catastrophe.

And then just last week, big changes happened in the company that I work for, so I just got a boat load of responsibilities dumped on me. Not complaining there, because more work means more hours. And I'm being paid on an hourly basis. You get what I mean. Hehe!

But guess what? All this has a silver lining - yes, there's more aside from the perks of more hours at work.

5 Reasons Why My 2016 is Going to be Awesome


1. Our new house help started last week. And she's awesome! She cleans way better than the last one and is infinitely more responsible. She has initiative! And that's rare in house helps these days. And because of her? I'm able to handle this additional work load better.

2. I got myself a year-long subscription to Iflix.com (Thanks to my dear friend Donna of honeys-haven.blogspot.com). I already finished watching all the seasons of Two Broke Girls (laugh fest!) and I'm 5 seasons into Vampire Diaries. Life is good.

3. A few close friends are getting married this year!

4. It's our 7th wedding anniversary this week. It's my understanding that 7 years is quite a milestone in marriages, so yey! The seven year itch that everyone's talking about comes to mind. Some say that for some marriages, couples are no longer happy after being married for around 7 years. Well, we're still definitely happy. So again, yey!

5. You all know that we've made a tradition of traveling to new places on our wedding anniversary. Well, it's not happening this year. Well, we're going to Tagaytay, but we've been there too many times to count. But it's fine, because we're not traveling far this year for a reason. Before you wonder, no, I'm not pregnant. But something totally awesome is going to happen in the next few weeks. I can't tell anyone about it yet because it's a surprise, but no one can stop me from blogging about it once it's here.

I can go on, and on, and on about why my 2016 is going to be awesome, but I'll end it at 5. I'm interested in your year so far. How's your 2016 going? I hope your year's proving to be a great one so far.

Oh, and in case you get antsy while waiting for my next blog post, why don't you visit me on Instagram? I try posting pretty photos there every so often.

P.S. I have yet to replace my profile photo on Instagram. Haha! Peace.

@MemetDiaries



Yesterday, December 16th, SM Cinema opened 4 brand spanking new theaters in SM Center Angono.

SM Cinema Opens 55th Branch in Angono


I wasn't able to make it to the much awaited opening ceremony yesterday because of um, work (yeah, I know, I know). But I was able to find out some deets for y'all anyway (Thank you, angel friends from SM!) because this is a big event for my friends here in the East, especially in Angono.

SM Cinema
L-R: Mr. Edgar Tejerero (President, SM Lifestyle Entertainment, Inc.), Prof. Ligaya Rubin (Wife of Vice Mayor Antonio Rubin), Hon. Mayor Gerardo Calderon of Angono, Rizal, Mr. Joaquin San Agustin (Sr. VP of Marketing, Shopping Center Management Corporation), Mr. Edwin Nava (VP of Operations, SM Lifestyle Entertainment, Inc.)
The 4 new fully digitized cinemas boast crisp digital surround-sound system and crystal clear images. Each theater can accommodate 200 movie goers at a time in stadium-like seats - this means you get to enjoy the movie from whatever seat you choose. Also, as a standard in all SM Cinemas, SM Cinema has an area dedicated to PWDs.

SM Cinema

Of course, where there's an SM Cinema, there's also Snack Time, their official snack and merchandise provider. Snack Time serves poporn, drinks, and other snacks, along with the latest movie merchandise that fans love to collect.

SM Cinema

The 4 new theaters in SM Center Angono means that there are now 306 SM Cinema screens across the entire country. In Rizal, there is an SM Cinema in SM Taytay, SM Masinag, and SM San Mateo. SM Cinema is the Philippines' largest cinema and exhibition brand with 60% of the country's total market share.

For more information on SM Cinema, visit www.smcinema.com or call [02] 470.2222.



I'm waiting for my blogging mojo to come back. I can feel it coming back to me bit by bit every day. Haha!

So, while we're waiting for that to bake, here's a sneak peek at my next blog post. Can you guess where this photo was taken?


Hi, everyone! If you're following me on Facebook, you've probably seen some of my latest coloring book projects (I'm still not done with the last one...). I also blogged about my coloring "past time" a few months ago.

Now, Louise of louisechelleblog.com is holding a coloring book giveaway on her blog. She contacted me along with a few other bloggers who are into adult coloring books and so we're collaborating on this giveaway!

Adult Coloring Book

Did you notice how most of the adult coloring books out there are mostly about gardens and mandalas? Well this one is something that Pinoys can be proud of.

Adult Coloring Book

Adult Coloring Book

Adult Coloring Book

Kulay Pinoy is a coloring book illustrated by our very own Vermailene "Ver" Barrios. She actually really works as a market researcher, so it's really cool that she's come out with her own illustrations! Check out Louise's post about the book launch HERE.

The book retails for P200 and you can order it on Ver's Facebook Page. Or you can join our giveaway and get one for FREE!

Kulay Pinoy Giveaway

Here are the Terms & Conditions:

  • Any Philippine resident can join.
  • This giveaway will run from the 20th of November until the 15th of December.
  • Winner must reply within 24 hours and confirm necessary details. Failure to do so, Louise (as the host) will choose another winner without prior notice.
  • Winner will be formally announced as soon as Louise has finished verifying the entries and as soon as the winner confirms the necessary details needed.
  • Shipping fee will be handled by the giveaway host.
  • The item will be shipped as soon as the winner confirms delivery address.
  • Tracking number will be provided to the winner so he/she can track the parcel.
  • Winner is required to take a selfie with the prize. The photo must be sent to the giveaway host via email. The host will be sharing the photo on her blog and social media accounts.
  • Posting in social media and tagging the giveaway host is optional but highly encouraged.
Kindly wait for the Rafflecopter widget to load for the mechanics. Good luck! :)