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Thursday, July 31, 2014

Today's Word: James 4:8

How's your day? I'm sharing a verse that gives us reason to be happy despite a hectic, tiring day. If we come near to God, He likewise comes near to us. How wonderful and reassuring! Knowing this, we become sure that if we come to the Lord in prayer, He listens and works to give us our needs though sometimes not immediately, but in His own, perfect time. I hope you're having a peaceful, blessed night after a tiresome day at work or in school.

                                                      (Photo credit: http://helpme-findgod.com)

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Today's Word: Deuteronomy 6:5

Yesterday was SONA (State of the Nation Address) day. And it was a looong and tiring one for us in the media. I went home late, with no more appetite for dinner because of exhaustion. Anyway, I'm sharing today a verse on God's first commandment to us: to love Him with all our heart and strength. How many of us are able to follow this commandment, with all the earthly things that distract us from loving and focusing on our God? Not many. Even I am guilty. Still, I try my best by putting Him first and praying before getting out of bed, hitting the  sack at night and as many times as I could in between. Well, the Lord sure deserves our love because He loved us first and He doesn't stop doing so even if screw up sometimes. That's how great and amazing our Creator is. The Lord bless you today.

Bible Verse Deuteronomy 6-5 Abstract Colorful Fire Heart HD Wallpaper Background
(Photo credit: testimoniesofheavenandhell.com)

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Today's Word: Proverbs 15:29

What is your fervent prayer today either for yourself, family or friend? Is someone sick and needs healing? Is someone taking the board exam and needs wisdom? Do you need a financial breakthrough? Proverbs 15:29 tells us that God hears the prayer not of wicked or bad people, but of those who live right before Him. So let us make sure we are cleansed from our sins before we make our petitions to God. Let us ask forgiveness and do our best to live right so that we can be sure there is no hindrance to our prayers 
and that God is hearing them. 
The Lord bless you today.   

                                                    (Photo credit: http://studiesofthegraphe.com)

What I'm lovin' now: McDonald's Shake Shake Fries!

What made your day yesterday? This did for me: McDonald's Shake Shake Fries and Iced Mocha. I sooo loved this pair! I'm not fond of plain French fries and my burger can do without it but I love the flavored ones, especially barbecue. Paired with Iced Mocha frappe and my day is complete. What a mood enhancer they were, what with the gloomy afternoon yesterday just before we went to church.


Saturday, July 26, 2014

Cake and coffee goodness at Tokyo Cafe

My family rarely goes to the SM Mall of Asia because it's quite far from where we live. Last June, however, I was there on two consecutive days because I lived close to it - temporarily. My sister came home from the US for a vacation and rented a condo unit in Ermita. My mom, another sister and I took turns staying with her in the condo. And for two days, my sister and I went shopping at MOA because it was now near and we'd gotten tired of Robinson's Ermita which was just a few steps away. And what do you know, I discovered in MOA a very nice coffee shop where brewed coffee was so good I immediately considered it as one the best I've had so far. It's Tokyo Cafe which serves good sandwiches, pasta and cakes, all with a Japanese twist and a variety of delicious coffee concoctions. It's not really new but it was my first time there and I loved it. It's the prefect place to spend the afternoon after shopping (or window shopping. Hehe.) at this vast mall. 
Here's what we had:

Yoshi burger, P195.
Teriyaki Chicken Sandwich, P240.
Caramel Mousse, P230. per slice
Cafe Vienna, P120
Sumibiyaki, P115.
Caramel Vienna, P135.
Yumminess behind the glass



This sweetened our day




I loved this classic and classy chandelier



Before we were here, I'd already read some blog posts about Tokyo Cafe, that's why I jumped at the chance to eat here. And I wasn't disappointed. We all loved our orders. The Yoshi Burger (one of my kids was with us, by the way, on this day and this was her order) was good, juicy, very cheesy and so filling it could satisfy a huge appetite. My sister and I particularly loved the Caramel Mousse Cake, but for me, it was the Sumibiyaki coffee that was unforgettable. Not all coffee shops serve good coffee, right? In fact, only a third (even fourth)  of those I've been to have a good and satisfying cup of joe. But this Sumibiyaki at Tokyo Cafe really impressed me and it's now among my Top 4 favorites (The others are the French Baker's Tchibo coffee, Lido Cocina Tsina's syphon-brewed coffee and Azucar Boulangerie and Patisserie's Illy coffee). The downside here is that Tokyo Cafe's is the most expensive among the four. Hehe. Nevertheless, I could say Tokyo Cafe 
deserves a second visit.

Today's Word: Micah 6:8

It amazes me how social media sites have exposed the kind of people most are these days. Forgive me but it's very easy to spot the persons who are so full of themselves that they always want to earn praises from other people either for their beauty or intelligence (which is foolishness in the eyes of God, anyway) or wealth. This is, however, contrary to the desire of our Lord God for us. As we can see in the Bible, God requires us to be humble. And Jesus was the perfect example of this. As He is the Son of God, He could have walked the Earth as a powerful king. He was, however, born in a humble place and earned a living as a carpenter before He began His work of salvation. Before he was crucified, he was taunted and mocked and beaten, yet He humbly accepted the insults without defending Himself. And then He made the great sacrifice of His life. If the Son of God who owned the heaven and the earth and everything in them could be that humble, couldn't we, too? We, who really own nothing except the things given to us by God? Let us see Jesus as the perfect example of humility and follow in His footesteps. God bless you.
 


                                                            (Photo credit: joyfulexpressions.us)

Friday, July 25, 2014

Today's Word: Deuteronomy 32:4

Have you seen on Facebook that picture with the inscription, "Sometimes God lets us hit rock-bottom so we would know He is the Rock at the bottom."? I love that! The Lord indeed is our Rock, whom we could hold on to in times of problems. If something troubles you deeply that you feel you are already hitting rock-bottom, remember to call on God and He would be more than willing to comfort you and lead you to the resolution of that problem. Pray and read His word and from there, He will enlighten you. God bless you today.


            (Oops, sorry, I forgot where I got this so I can't put the credit. But many thanks to
 the owner of this picture.)

Good morning brekkie

Howdy? I got up earlier than usual this morning and found my daughter making some French toast. Minutes later, I found this on the table. Banana-Nutella French Toast! 
How's that for a nice morning?


Thursday, July 24, 2014

Today's Word: Deuteronomy 32:2

This morning, I rose while it rained and thundered. And I remembered how I hated when it rained when I was not a Christian yet because it made commuting to work and going home so inconvenient. Now, I see rain in a whole new way, considering it a downpour of blessings from the Lord. I've read some scripture saying it is God Himself who sends rain from above to the earth to make crops grow and give food to the people. Isn't our God so mighty and awesome? The Lord bless you today. :-)

                                               (Photo credit: http://christinesbiblestudy.wordpress.com)

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Today's Word: Matthew 28:20

Hello there! How's your day goin' so far? Mine was initially not good (I lost my left contact lens as I was putting it on this morning), but now it's much better. I arrived in the office on time and then I received a huge favor. For these, I thank the Lord. 
But if anyone is facing troubles today, let us bank on this promise from God: that He will be with us till the end of time. This is, of course, a promise to all those who believe in Him. So if you haven't accepted Jesus in your life, why don't you do so today and start receiving His promises. You will be greatly blessed. :-)


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Maginhawa St. Gastronomic Walk #2: Ally's All-Day Breakfast Place

I'm not a morning person but I absolutely love breakfast! Isn't it ironic? Haha! For this reason, all-day breakfast restaurants appeal to me like Winnie the Pooh is drawn to honey. Now that's a corny comparison. Tee-hee. Anyway, last Saturday, my daughter AJ and I headed to Commonwealth Ave. in Quezon City to buy our personal hygiene products from Human Nature. But before proceeding there, we dropped by Maginhawa St. in Sikatuna Village, Q.C., to look for this restaurant called Ally's All-Day Breakfast Place . It's not along Maginhawa St. itself but on Malingap near the corner with Maginhawa. The latter has become widely known as a foodie haven, with lots of restaurants opening up along its stretch and side streets in recent years.
Finding Ally's was a breeze, thankfully, as it began to rain minutes after we were settled inside. It's quite small, with only about six tables inside and three outside. The interiors speak of a sunny morning with yellow as the dominating color. We scanned the menu and found rice meals, French toast, pancakes and waffles - breakfast the way I love it! I settled for a French toast as I was still full from lunch, but my daughter had rice and longanisa and eggs. We both had coffee to wash down everything. The French toast with strawberries was sooo good! My daughter and I both raved about it. Love, love, love!

Strawberry Cream Cheese French toast, P150 (served with iced tea, add P20 for upgrade to brewed coffee).
Vigan longanisa rice meal, P150. (also served with iced tea, add P20 for upgrade to coffee)

Brewed coffee
Menu



The sun always shines here. :-)
Feeling creative with your brekkie? 
                                                       Oh, yes, I do! This is on the wall.

Ally's All-Day Breakfast Place at 50 Malingap St., Sikatuna Village, QC
The Strawberry Cream Cheese French toast was unforgettably delicious. It has a balance of two flavors -  sweet and salty. The sweetness of the strawberry syrup was not overwhelming, you could still pour over some maple syrup (I didn't to avoid guilt feelings. Haha!). The saltiness of the cheese added an interesting flair. So yummy! Perfect with a cup of coffee. Meanwhile, my daughter liked the Vigan longanisa, too. Because we were recently in Vigan and ate these sausages for brekkie there, I was a bit nostalgic, too. Haha! I seriously recommend Ally's All-Day Breakfast Place for their good food. Also, the servers are quite nice. And one more thing, be prepared to be greeted "Good morning" even at 5 pm. Haha! 
Have a good day, folks! Expect more foodie adventures from me on Maginhawa St.

Today's Word: Romans 12:12

Patience. I used to have little of it. When I wanted something, I gotta have it quick. As a baby Christian, having patience was one of the first things the Lord taught me. Today, more than a year later, I'm still learning, bit by bit. But looking back, I realize I've gone this far and I thank God for lessons learned. Patience, I realize, is an integral part of our faith in God because when we wait in patience for the fulfillment of His promises or answers to our prayers, we are exercising faith, and that pleases our Lord. God bless you today.


Monday, July 21, 2014

Today's Word: Proverbs 11:2

Before I became a Christian, I thought of "wisdom" as that kind of thinking only the old and experienced possess. When I was born again, the Holy Spirit led me to the learning that wisdom is essentially the enlightenment that comes from God, which leads people to do His will and obey His commands. Upon this realization, I considered wisdom an important part of my Christian life because this is how God tells me what to do in a particular situation, especially in times of trouble. Wisdom from God is not, however, given to the prideful, who think that their earthly wisdom makes them so great. They don't realize that human wisdom is foolishness before God (1 Corinthians 3:19). As Proverbs 11:2 says, God gives wisdom only to those who humble themselves before Him. The Lord bless you today.

                                                          (Photo credit: http://wallpaper4god.com)

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Today's Word: Philippians 4:13

Do you feel tired and weary physically or emotionally? I do sometimes. We all do, I guess. Well, there's good news! Strength is available to us from our Lord Jesus when we come to Him in prayer. One day, I shared a problem with my daughter who is starting her work to become a pastor at our church and I expressed feelings of not having the strength to go on praying for this particular thing. She then reminded me of this verse from the Bible: "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me". How encouraging! So whenever you feel tired from work or problems, remember Philippians 4:13. Jesus can make us strong again. God bless. 

                                                                

Viva Vigan!

Summer 2014 was one of the most memorable for me as our family had the chance to travel to the northern Philippines, first to Vigan City in Ilocos Sur, then to Pagudpud in Ilocos Norte and lastly, to Baguio City in Benguet Province. Vigan, for those who may not be in the know, is a World Heritage Site as declared by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), for its well-preserved Spanish colonial houses dating back to the 16th century. For this same reason, Vigan, earlier this July, made it as one of the top 21 official finalists competing for a spot in the New 7 Wonder Cities of the World. Hurray! How's that for a bit of good news? The other contenders include Bangkok, Barcelona, Beirut, Chicago, Doha, Durban, Havana, Istanbul, Mexico City, Mumbai and Perth. Anyway, we spent three days and two nights in Vigan, where our eyes feasted on many wonderful sights and our tummies, on the many savory Ilocano dishes like bagnet and Vigan longganisa. In one of my previous posts, I shared about those dishes that we tried in several restaurants. Now, I'm sharing the sights that we enjoyed in the heritage city.

                                                    Village Angela Heritage House
This was where we stayed - a 141-year-old house that was built in 1873. It is well-preserved, very clean and lovely. It may strike you as a haunted house (haha!) and some say they indeed experienced visits by some spirits but as for us, there wasn't any such encounter. Service by the three caretakers of the house was very friendly. They really attended to our needs and would even ask us at night what we would want for breakfast the following day. To give you an idea of how much stay here costs, we paid around P7,000 for one night for two big rooms. We were 14 in all. Breakfast was included. 



Yes, Tom Cruise stayed here while filming 4th of July.


Living room
Dining area
The room I shared with mom and sisters and the girls
                                                                           Antique pieces




                                                                    Cooking area

Meanwhile, here are the places we visited around Vigan:


Calle Crisologo - the famous cobblestone street lined up on both sides 
by centuries-old houses.


                                                                      
                                                                     The pottery




                                                                      Plaza Salcedo





                                                                  Vigan Cathedral 






                            McDonald's at the side of Vigan Cathedral and Plaza Salcedo



Inside McDonald's
     Baluarte - a zoo owned by former Ilocos Sur Governor Luis "Chavit" Singson. 
This is an 80-hectare park where lots of animals can be found and which is open to the public. Admission is free!

Hidden Garden  - it's a flora paradise and anyone who loves gardening will find a piece of heaven here. All sorts of plants are here for sale. There's also a foodie place called Lilong and Lilang Restaurant, where we had a sumptuous and enjoyable lunch.







Vigan is one lovely place to visit - truly something we Filipinos can be proud of. I hope it wins in the New Seven Wonder Cities of the World search. Let's vote for Vigan, folks!