Monday, June 27, 2011

Reflections of a Full-Time Mom

By: Cheryl Ann Lei Reyes

I made this video for my sake,
For sometimes I fail to appreciate,
These precious moments when I still can say,
That you depended on me in every way.

I now realize that I’m lucky this way,
That I have you all day in my embrace.
For someday this moment will be way past today,
When the world and your dreams will be yours to take.

Then you won’t have a choice but to forsake,
The mother who cared for you, so that you may,
Look for your destiny and make mistakes,
To learn to live and find your own way.

When that day comes, I will have to face,
Empty days without you when I wake.
But don’t you forget, I’ll be here to stay,
To guide you every single step of the way.

Looking back someday, I’d be able to say,
It’s a good thing I wrote my reflections today,
To remind me of my precious yesterday,
When once I was a mother to you all day.

"Thank you, Neo, for inspiring me every minute of every day."

Thursday, June 23, 2011

One step towards a greener world

Tourism has a great impact on economies worldwide. But at times, it could do more damage than good to our environment. Following the philosophy of ecotourism is vital in order to ensure the longevity of our planet. We should minimize our impact on the places we visit and try to lend our assistance to conservation programs. 

As responsible travelers, we must maintain a careful balance between recreation and preservation. Even small things like not littering, reusing our towels, not buying food or drinks in plastic containers, switching off the lights when leaving the hotel room and choosing to stay in an environmentally-friendly hotel or lodge, would go a long way.
When our planet started to exist, only plants and animals inhabited our world. We, humans, would wait millions of years to begin our evolution and eventually emerge as the supreme and most dominant species in our territory. It would take a combination of natural calamity (asteroid impact killing all dinosaurs) and our rational minds (that which sets us apart from other life forms) to seal our fate as rulers of the earth.

But are we really? Something tells me that we are just travelers passing by. That all our actions whether beneficial or detrimental, would reap consequences if not now, in the very near future. That’s why we should all tread lightly on Mother Earth. By protecting our planet, we are also securing our future and that of generations to come.

P.S. This was my entry for the Belize Travel Blog Essay Writing Competition. I didn't win but I will try to practice what I preach.:)

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Pevonia's Restorative Water Lily Facial at The Spa

Nothing says girl bonding like a spa day. Last Mother's Day, my Mom and I had the rare opportunity to go to a spa together for a relaxing treatment. Usually, we would just try a new restaurant or watch a movie to celebrate. It's hard when we have my one-year-old to take care of. Good thing my sister was on school break. She took my toddler out of our hands for an hour of  Pevonia bliss.

With my Mom, at The Spa-Alabang.

I was a regular customer at The Spa-Alabang before motherhood took my monthly leisure away. When we arrived, we were immediately ushered into the locker room to change into our spa robes. Although we would have wanted to, we had to decline using their wet floor facilities because we couldn't be gone for long. 

After a perfect cup of my favorite ginger tea, we were assisted to the facial room for Pevonia's Restorative Water Lily Treatment. My therapist asked me if it was okay to do a little pricking of black and white heads. When I gave her the go-ahead, she began with a gentle facial scrub followed by a relaxing steam facial to open up the pores and let out impurities. She then proceeded to prick blackheads and whiteheads with a scalpel. It was a little painful at first but after a few pricks, I finally adapted to it. A toner was applied after the procedure to shrink the appearance of pores. Next, she massaged a water lily-scented cream that felt cold and refreshing on my face. A relaxing back massage ended our Pevonia spa experience.

Pevonia's Restorative Water Lily Facial (Php1800) at The Spa.

I was instructed to leave the cream overnight for maximum results. I didn't mind because the cream on my face felt very light and silky. After rinsing the next day, I noticed an instant smoothness and firmness. And when I checked my face in the mirror, I  was quite impressed. My skin was a shade lighter and there was the evident radiant glow of a well-hydrated skin. It looked like I just stepped out of the steam bath with my rosy cheeks.

My Mom, too, was amazed at how the appearance of her fine lines and wrinkles had suddenly improved. Just a day after the treatment, she was already asking me when we're getting our next Pevonia Water Lily Facial.:) Thanks to Pevonia Botanica! My Mom really enjoyed her special day. I did too. We just might make this our annual Mother's Day date from now on.:)

The Spa-Alabang
Lower Ground, Alabang Town Center, Alabang, Muntinlupa City
Tel Num: 850-3490/850-6836/Mobile No: 0905-3162444
Operational Hours: 1:00pm - 9:00pm daily

Pevonia’s Restorative Water Lily Treatment is available at The Spa Wellness at The Fort, The Spa Alabang, The Spa Greenbelt, The Spa Rockwell and The Spa Eastwood.  To find out more about Pevonia Botanica facials, body treatments and home care products, please call +63 2 634-8210 or visit to locate a spa near you.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

“PLDT myDSL’s Internet to Sawa TRANSFORMS my Internet experience from EXHAUSTING to INEXHAUSTIBLE!”

I'm big on Internet speed. My whole day depends on it. Cut my Internet connection and you would unleash the beast in me. Ask my service provider and they would know.:)

As soon as I wake up in the morning, I would reach for my laptop and begin my day. Sometimes, even before  brushing my teeth.:) And I don't know why, but I have this silly habit of going to just to check if I was getting the connection speed I was paying for. A little bit on the OC side, I must admit.

I have a love/hate relationship with my current Internet connection. I write my blog posts in the morning but the speed of my Internet was so slow, it's making me crazy! It's hard to do an article when you couldn't  browse the web properly. At night, we reconcile when the speed was a lot faster. But who wants a rocky relationship? It can get really exhausting and things would have to go south at some point.

It's a good thing, I have a new prospect. I know it sounds like something a two-timing person would say. But it's hard to stay loyal when you're not getting what you deserve, right?

When I went to my friend's house to watch a Manny Pacquiao fight through their PLDT WatchPad, I also asked to connect to their Wi-Fi. And whoa! I was completely blown away. Their PLDT myDSL's speed was 3Mbps and mine was not even 2Mbps. I never wanted to leave. I had to drag myself out of that house because I knew the kind of Internet connection I was going home to.

Something's gotta give. Particularly, after reading about PLDT myDSL's offer of upgrading their Plan 3000 subscribers from 3Mbps to an unlimited 5Mbps for free. It would also be really cool to have my very own PLDT WatchPad. No need to barge into someone else's home just to see my favorite boxer in action. And the one year of free PLDT to PLDT NDD calls would be a very nice cherry on top of the cake.

It's time for a change. Especially now that I'm not anymore just another blogger. I recently became a certified Nuffnanger. In fact, I just attended their exclusive film screening of "X-MEN: First Class" with my hubby. It does feel good to be a Glitterati, but it would feel even better if this Glitterati was writing her blog posts effortlessly with the inexhaustible Internet connection and speedtastic offer made possible only by PLDT myDSL. I'm definitely making the transformation. Are you?

Visit for more information or call 171 to confirm your subscription today!’ 

MassKara Festival, A Celebration of Life

I have always been fascinated with masks since I was a child. I am especially fond of masquerade masks, just like the ones they wore in "The Phantom of the Opera". In fact, I used to beg my mom to buy me one every single Halloween. But she would refuse because my other sisters were afraid of it.

Here's a picture of me at a Venetian masks souvenir shop in Las Vegas, 2009.

It's no wonder I immediately got excited when I first heard about the MassKara Festival of Bacolod. This festival sounds like fun. With all the dancing and intricate costumes, this could well be the most colorful fiesta in the country.

I had a lot of friends who hailed from Bacolod. My mom herself was an Ilongga from the nearby province of Antique. According to my mom, the smiling masks worn by the streetdancers were a symbol of the locals' happy spirit. Their ability to smile in the face of poverty, brought about by periodic instability in the sugar industry. Which is by the way, the town's main source of livelihood.

The smiling masks at the MassKara Festival in Bacolod.

Bacolod is definitely going right on the top of my list of places to see. I want to witness the colorfully-masked dancers and be a part of the MassKara Festival. I want a taste of the native Ilonggo cuisine at the food festival. I want to explore the history and culture of the area. I want to connect with the place by getting to know the locals.

The MassKara Festival is for everyone anyway. A celebration of our triumph over trials, of abundance over poverty, of victory over tragedy.  After all, life itself is one big celebration.

"Experience MassKara Festival, Hermosa Festival and Lanzones Festival this October. Airphil Express flies daily to BACOLOD, ZAMBOANGA and CAGAYAN DE ORO from Cebu and Manila. Visit to book!"

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

“What makes a smartphone a genius phone?”

I am no gadget expert. In fact, I can count the gadgets I use on the fingers of one hand. My trusty laptop, which as a blogger, is my gateway to the world. My dependable digital TV recorder, which allows me to catch my favorite programs. And my beloved cell phone...

I've had this cell phone of mine for a very long time. I even named it BUBU. My husband and I used to be text mates. Since we met through BUBU, I didn't have the heart to replace it. Or maybe, I just haven't seen a worthy phone out there that would change my mind.

BUBU and I hadn't hit a rough patch, until one day last year. My brother was using BUBU's camera to record my son at the height of his tantrum. And then, BAM! It happened. My 4-month-old rolled over onto his stomach for the very first time. This was one developmental milestone I always wanted to capture in vivid detail. Here's BUBU's handiwork:

As much as I love BUBU, I have to admit that I was quite disappointed with this video. I wished BUBU had the ability to shoot 1080p full HD videos just like the LG Optimus 2X.

And then there's the tripod dilemma. Since BUBU and my husband's phone both had low resolution cameras, my husband would always carry his DSLR even on trips where he didn't really need it. It wouldn't normally be an issue, except my hubby needed a "caddie" so he could take a nice shot. And that caddie was me...

Here's what your expression would be if you're carrying a 5 lbs tripod even when standing at the entrance of Disney World.

If only our phones had the 8 megapixel camera of LG Optimus 2X, I would never have to drag a tripod along in our family trips. However, I won't have a problem carrying the stylishly slim and lightweight LG Optimus Black.:) Not to mention, with a 2 megapixel front-facing camera, this kind of hair atrocity would not have to be immortalized again.

"If only I was able to check my hair from my phone!"

LG's Optimus line brings smartphones to a whole new level. From the 4-inch NOVA display that boasts the brightest in optimal visibility of the LG Optimus Black to the dual-core NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor of the LG Optimus 2X, these phones definitely set a new standard in technology. There's no doubt in my mind that LG Optimus offers the latest innovation and fastest Internet browsing experience out there. The blogger in me is already getting excited.

LG Optimus 2X

LG Optimus Black and LG Optimus 2x

The search is over. I'm sure BUBU would be happy with my choice. It's time for my beloved phone to take its rightful place on the shelf, among our wedding mementos. BUBU has served me long enough, after all.

I am no gadget expert. But I know a genius phone when I see one. A phone that solves my problems and gives me more. A smartphone that has it all...a "GENIUS PHONE" worth waiting for.

Optimus is more than just smart. It’s genius. Visit for more information!

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