One fine Friday

After attending mass at St. Mary’s we went to Burjuman to have lunch at Barrio Fiesta. We’re quite a big group, 6 adults and 4 kids so when we saw the Friday buffet for AED 49, we thought it’s better to go for it than order ala carte.

One Fine Friday

Don’t be deceived by the photo. They don’t serve those dishes shown on the ad. I’m not sure if they change menu every weekend but last Friday we had spicy beef (really good), fried tofu, crispy chicken skin (good but bad for your health), creamy pumpkin soup (good), fried rice, grilled chicken (didn’t taste but Cole said it’s fine), chicken sisig (bleh!), sweet & sour fish fillet (didn’t try), goto (good but I wanted it to be extra hot – like boiling hot), stir-fry Asian noodles, some vegetable dishes, salad and dessert which I did not at all try. Continue reading →

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Atlantis Hotel The Palm Review

I think by now you have seen some of my social media posts about our stay in Atlantis last week (was it just last week? It feels like months ago!). Let me share my own review of the hotel. It might prepare you of what to expect and I’ll throw in some tips as well.

So as I said on my previous post , I booked this stay through Atlantis website and got an offer for 1-night stay, breakfast and halfboard for AED 1595++.

Atlantis Hotel The Palm Review

Doing the math, I thought it’s a good deal for a family of four

Entrance to Aquaventure – AED 730 (AED 195 is the discounted ticket price for UAE adult residents and AED 170 for kids)
Lost Chambers – AED 250 (AED 75 for UAE adult residents and AED 50 for kids)
Half Board meal – AED 555 (AED 185 for adults, not sure for kids but I’ll assume it’s 50% off)

Just the total of these three is AED 1535. It’s like getting the room for free, right?  Continue reading →

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All good things must come to an end

Ahhh… it’s Sunday – start of the week in this part of the world. I need to prepare and rush to office but let me post some pictures of our Atlantis staycation first.
“How I wish we can stay here for 10 days”. I said loudly while waiting for our car to go home.
I know Gibson and the kids feel the same way.

As I mentioned on my Facebook live broadcast (please go to my Facebook page), I saw this deal from Atlantis website which offers 1 night stay, breakfast and halfboard (lunch or dinner) for AED 1,595 for family of 4 (2 adults and 2 kids) to all Mastercard holders.
As a guest of Atlantis you get unlimited access to Aquaventure waterpark and The Lost Chambers.

That’s a good value considering that waterpark tickets cost AED 260 for adults and AED 215 for kids. For our family that would costs us AED 950 already. Plus the buffet lunch we had then it’s really a good deal.

As I mentioned, it has been kind of family tradition to try hotels in UAE and this year it coincides with our wedding anniversary. Let me share some snippets of this celebration 🙂

We’re given a slice of cake and a wedding anniversary greeting card.
All good things must come to an end Continue reading →

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Atlantis here we come!!!

Staying in a hotel is my family’s mini luxury. Hotel has its own certain charm and it’s nice to receive five-star treatment (well, most of the time). It’s like having a very big house with staff and you get to enjoy the spa, sauna, gym, pool, and all its facilities.

For me, the best part is not worrying about the dishes or cooking or cleaning up the place. Aside from the fact that it’s not as expensive as travelling to another country, you get to relax more and really just chill. Travelling is fun, for sure, but it can be tiring sometimes as we would want to squeeze many activities in just few days.

‘Staycation’ is usually our preferred way of celebrating special occasions such as Valentine’s Day and wedding anniversary and become a family tradition of some sort. Just look at these photos I’m able to dig from my Facebook albums.

2009 – Media Rotana, Dubai

With my chinese siopao face
Media Rotana Continue reading →

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Happy Monday Madlang People!

Hello, hello! Happy Monday everyone. For those in the Philippines, it’s the first day of the week and for us working in this part of the world, we are almost half way there! Woohoo!

I am looking forward to the weekend as the fambam will be staying in Atlantis Hotel for the first time. It’s has been our tradition to stay in a hotel on our wedding anniversary and we usually visit those that we haven’t stayed before. So this year it will be the Atlantis. As guests, we will have access to Aquaventure waterpark so I bought this waterproof case from iStyle for AED 299. I asked the sales guy if it’s 100% foolproof and he said there’s instructions to follow for first time user. Although it seems to be fine, I am scared to put my brand new phone to test. Afraid!!! But let’s see.

Happy Monday Madlang People!

Talking about our wedding anniversary, this photo popped up on my Facebook memories and I remember how simple our church wedding anniversary is. We got married 10 years ago in the Philippine Consulate in Dubai and renewed our vows, this time in church, in 2012. I always prefer low-key celebrations so for our church wedding, it’s only our parents, two witnesses and the priest. That’s it. I bought my dress from Zara.

Happy Monday Madlang People!

To be honest, I totally forgot about our church wedding anniversary as I still consider our civil ceremony as the official one. I was surprised to received these flowers, cupcakes and balloons from the delivery guy. Totally not expecting it! Gibson was in the Philippines that day but he was still able to surprise me. Brownie points for him!
FullSizeRender 34_Fotor

While Gibson and Cole were in the Philippine, this is what Biel and I were doing. Makeup session!Happy Monday Madlang People!

It’s feel like it has been months ago since my last vacation when in fact it’s been only two weeks. I took a selfie on my first day returning to work. I look happy, right? LOL

Happy Monday Madlang People!

Lastly, how can I end this post without food. Here’s a sushi plate I devoured last time I was in Sumo Suhi annd Bento. I think that’s my quote for 2 months so no sushi post from me in coming weeks. Promise.

Happy Monday Madlang People!

Have a good weekend guys!

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My two cents…

Some people are scared of flying. I know a family member who won’t visit the toilet – even during the 8-hour flight to/from Dubai.
She would rather wear diapers than be siphoned out of the plane.
Well not me. I love flying.

I’m always looking forward to airplane food and in-flight entertainment. Cole’s barometer of a good airline is if they are serving cup noodles. Our family rarely feels ear pressure or nausea.

Thanks God we always had good take off and landing and not once experienced any hard turbulence that I prayed for our dear life. Aside from my faith that He will keep us safe, I always believe in this statistic.

Stat

But when you hear of missing planes (remember that Malaysian air flight?) or crashed landings, I can’t help but be scared. I cannot imagine the horror these passengers had gone through.
Passengers and crew members of flight EK 521 are really one lucky bunch of people. I almost cried watching this video.

I have read many derogatory comments (some are racist) on why these passengers bothered taking their carry-on luggage in an emergency situation. As those airline emergency videos tell us, we have to stay calm, follow the pilot and crew’s instructions and just evacuate as fast as we can. Not once we’ve seen that we should take our valuable stuff, right?

But you know what, unless you have experienced it and live to tell the tale, we should stop judging these people and just shut up.
If passengers around me are grabbing their bags, and if mine is within reach, then I could have done the same thing.
I might realize later that it’s the most stupid thing to do and I had risked mine and other passengers’ lives by saving my bag but well, I already grabbed it.

It’s also possible that I would cry non-stop, freeze and will just be thrown out of the plane by one hunky flight attendant.
flight attendant

So let’s stop judging these passengers’ actions and behaviors. They panicked. They didn’t think straight. You can’t expect all 300 people to react the same logical way. Instead, let’s all be grateful that they are alive and pray to God that we won’t experience that misfortune.

So next time I ride a plane, no matter how repetitive these emergency videos are, I promise to watch and pay attention.

But for now, let me whisper a silent prayer for my two boys’ safe flight tomorrow. Amen.

 

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Hair care tips for the hot summer months

With temperatures in Dubai reaching above 40 C, I always ensure that I smother my face and body with high SPF sun screen. I am conscious now of skin ageing and fine lines yah know! But after a recent visit to a salon, the stylist told me that my hair is so damaged most probably because of hot water, I realized I have to take care of my tresses as well. The hair, after all, is our crowning glory.

Hair care tips for the hot summer months 

Dubai’s summer is here bringing it with the high humidity and intense heat. This coupled with dust and pollution can wreak havoc with our hair. Dr. Manoj Kumar, Medical Director at Bloom Aesthetic and Laser Clinic shares the following tips to ensure healthy hair during the hot summer months.

  1. Time for a shower – Every night before going to bed, most people would wash away the grime and dirt on their faces. However, not many realize your hair is also exposed to the same pollution and will be just as dirty. Washing your everyday will cause it to dry out so make sure to do it every other day to avoid dirt buildup.
  2. Deep conditioning – The humidity and heat dries up your hair and this can lead to frizz and knots. Shea butter is a great natural conditioner after a wash – just take a small pea sized amount and use your palms to warm it and then apply it to the ends. Oil your hair two to three hours before a shower for a destressing deep conditioning treatment. If you are heading to the beach or pool, make sure to use a leave in conditioner. It will help in protecting your strands from the sunlight, sea water and chlorine in the pool.
  3. Fake It – Who doesn’t love beautiful beach waves? They are always on trend and suits almost all face shapes. However, a day at the beach under the 40+ temperatures can be quite detrimental to your hair. Make a homemade sea salt spray – mix 1 tsp of salt, 1 tbsp of coconut oil with 1.5 cups of water in a spray bottle. Spritz it on and then scrunch your hair to achieve the beach waves look. The coconut oil will also help moisturize your hair.
  4. Get stylish with a scarf – Scarves and turbans are very trendy in this part of the world with a plethora of beautifully designed ones available at every nook and corner of the city. Jazz up your outfit with a stylish scarf or turban that not only wins you fashion points but also protects your hair from the heat. It will also act as a shield from pollution and the wind.
  5. It’s all in the nutrients – We’ve all heard the phrase, ‘you are what you eat’ and that is the truth. Ensure you drink at least 1.5 liters of water daily as this will prevent dehydration and ultimately the drying of hair. Eat plenty of green leafy vegetables and fruits to maintain the condition of your hair. Vitamin E helps in the production of hair and is found in abundance in nuts, beans and spinach so ensure these foods are a part of your daily diet.

About Bloom Aesthetic and Laser Clinic

At Bloom Aesthetic and Laser Clinic, individual treatments and services are elevated to become an all-encompassing, life altering experience by ensuring patients receive the most personalized treatments from experts using some of the industry’s premier equipment for safe and effective results. The Clinic has 13 treatment rooms and the range of services at Bloom include non- surgical skin enhancing treatments, hair loss solutions, luxurious facials, skin- toning, tightening and weight loss programs, body slimming, skin rejuvenation treatments, laser procedures and more.

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Happy anniversary to me!

I received an email reminder that my domain is due for renewal and I was like ‘WHATTT???’. It feels like I’ve only started this blog a few months ago. Has it been a year?

I counted how many blog posts I’ve written since I started and for someone who thinks she’s busy, I posted a lot of things – not bad on my standards.

Anyhoo, few months ago I had grand plans for my first anniversary. I thought I’ll make a dramatic and touching article thanking everyone for their wonderful support. A tear-jerking piece when I recall the hardships, the struggles and the triumphs of succeeding in this cruel blogging world (LOL, there’s no such thing or if there is I don’t really care).

But seriously I want to write a heartfelt post to thank everyone who cares enough to read whatever nonsense I’m writing. And maybe to have some thank you giveaway as well. I just need to wait until things slow down a bit.

If not for that email reminder, I will definitely miss that Filipina Expat has completed one year. Well you know the fambam went on holidays, Cole got hospitalized, Gibson is flying to Philippines tomorrow to pick him up, and then Gibs and I will be celebrating our 10th year wedding anniversary in a few days.

With so many things going on I can’t concentrate on blogging and I have so many things to share. I want to share the struggle we experienced on getting an OEC for my Ate V in the Philippines, write some proper food review of places we visited because that’s the only leisure we did while we were there – EAT! I also want to share our experience of flying with Emirates and lots of more. What an ambitious goal.

For now, let me go back to work and drink my nth cup of coffee and figure out how I can do all these.

Again, thank you everyone for sticking with me. Have a good start of the week 🙂

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Pinas Vacation 2016

We’re back in Dubai, Alhamdulillah!

We had three weeks of relaxing holiday in the Philippines although we are a bit sad that Cole had to stay behind because he was hospitalized the night we’re supposed to fly back to Dubai 😓 He was vomiting, having diarrhea (sorry, TMI) and complaining of stomach pain (diagnosis: amoebiasis and UTI). I’m sad that it’s just me, Gibson and Biel who flew back yesterday but at least Cole is in the loving care of his grandparents. Gibson will just fly back again after 2 weeks to pick him up. I’m happy to report that he’s fine now and on the road to recovery.

Moral lesson of the story: Don’t let your kids eat too much junk and street food while on holiday even how much clean you think the food is.  Continue reading →

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Is it easy to find job in Dubai?

Is it easy to find job in Dubai?

I’ve been receiving lot of questions both from people I know and from readers on how they can come to Dubai. Most of the queries are:

  • Is it easy to find a job?
  • How much is the salary?
  • Can you sponsor me?
  • How much is the visa/air ticket?
  • What’s the procedure of getting a visa?

I received this mail from Arlyn and instead of replying to her directly, I thought why not just write a post about it. It would spare me from repeating myself to friends and family asking on how to do it.

I also have a question. I’ve been planning to go there in Dubai for a greener pasture opportunity. However, I don’t have any relatives there whom can assist me with the Visa. Is the cross country thing safe? Say, I’ll go to HK then Dubai and I believe there is Visa offered upon arrival. Will that work?- ARLYN

I first came to Dubai as a visit visa holder too.We were a group of friends who tried our luck in this city and stayed in Satwa as bed spacers. Since I didn’t have a laptop yet (and there’s no wifi in our villa), I would visit computer shops everyday and apply for jobs online. I also experienced doing ‘walk-in applications’ (submitting resumes to companies even though they don’t have any vacancy). I consider myself lucky that I found a job as a receptionist in a catering company just two weeks after I landed. It wasn’t the case with my friends and some of the people I know who needed to ‘exit’ (a term which means exiting UAE and come back either on a visit visa or employment visa). Continue reading →

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