Tuesday, May 29

Face: Olay Total Effects

Have you ever felt your face so dry that every smile you make or word you say make you feel that your face is so tight? Every time I visit California, that's how I feel.

I have been looking for the ultimate facial moisturizer that does not feel oily after application. I got this Olay Total Effects last year just to try. I didn't get to try it often in Manila because it is so humid there, and putting moisturizer on your face just seems wrong (at least for me). I do put some, though, right after showering when my face feels tight.

The verdict? I love it! It feels so light on your skin, and with the added benefits like anti-aging, I'm sold. :-)

What is your favorite facial moisturizer?

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Friday, May 25

Baby: Flying with a Sick Toddler

We are now in San Francisco. Daddy E and Alyssa are now sleeping, but I am still wide awake. I took a nap earlier.

Twelve hours before our takeoff, we were almost all set. We just needed to fix our carry-on bags. I thought it was going to be stress-free. But lo and behold, Alyssa's temperature suddenly went up to almost 40C. That's almost 104F. I had to control her fever by using the emergency travel meds her pediatrician gave.

Her temperature went down a bit during and after the flight.

Does this look like a sick baby to you? Here we are, playing with the camera in SFO. Uhm, I look worse than my baby. Haha!

It is a good thing to visit your pediatrician a week before traveling out of the country, to make sure everything's AOK with your baby. More importantly, ask for a detailed list (with dosage and all) of medications for ALL common illnesses you can think of. Buy the meds beforehand at your local drugstore, and put the most important ones in your carry-ons. Don't worry, airport security lets these through even if the bottles are more than 3 oz.

To be specific, ask your pediatrician medications for the following:

  • fever or pain
  • cough
  • cold or congestion
  • allergy or asthma
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • colic
  • Important: antibiotics
  • Optional: Benadryl or Iterax to help your baby sleep during the flight. Ask your pediatrician first if this is okay for your baby.
You don't have to bring all these meds in your carryon. I only brought the ones for fever, cough, congestion, allergy and Iterax. On a side note, the Iterax dosage the ped gave didn't work for Alyssa. She couldn't get a decent sleep during the flight.

I also found it very useful to ask the check-in attendant to reserve bulkhead seats for us. More legroom, but you have to store all your bags in the overhead compartment. So make sure you have the meds and a few other things handy already:
  • toys and books to keep baby entertained (those without sound so you don't disturb the other passengers)
  • towel / wipes
  • extra diapers
  • travel changing pad
  • extra clothes
  • formula
  • water -- as long as they're in your baby's bottles, they're okay with airport security
  • a few ziplocks

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Thursday, May 24

Food: Prix Fixe at Atlanta's Woodfire Grill

If you have been following Top Chef in the past seasons religiously, you know who Chef Kevin Gillespie is. He is also the Executive Chef of Woodfire Grill in Atlanta. By far, it is my favorite restaurant in Atlanta. Their menu is ever-changing as they rely on the fresh local ingredients that are in season.

It has been a year since I last ate at Woodfire Grill, and I miss it terribly. But you know, it's only a matter of time until we see each other again. ;-)

Here are a bunch of photos of their tasty prix fixe treats that I took then that I forgot to share with you. I think it was when we were packing for our big move. Oh, and forgive me if I can't remember what the dishes' names were.

Prix fixe menus start at $70. A la carte is also available, but with every single thing tasting so delicious, why would you not want the 5- or 7-course tasting menu?

What about you? Where do you get your favorite?

Woodfire Grill
1782 Cheshire Bridge Road
Atlanta, GA 30324

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Thursday, May 17

Freebie: More Lilly Prints

There are new free downloadable prints out on the Lilly blog. Well, I guess they're new for me. I just saw them today, and I haven't been logging in for the longest time. I love them! I hope you do too.

Image from the Lilly blog

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Thursday, May 10

Shopping: Banana Republic x Trina Turk Collab

I think this would be another hit for the Gap family as far as collaboration goes. I loved the GapKids and DVF teamup. Now, Banana Republic's going to have a Trina Turk collection. I am so excited. It's coming this June!

Image from Huffington Post

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Tuesday, May 8

Food: Pancake Love

About a year or so ago, my family and I went to Nashville, TN to meet up with my nephew. One of his short films was part of the Nashville Film Festival, so we took the opportunity and spent some time with him plus tour around the city.

It was in this quaint city that we discovered Pancake Pantry. It was heavenly full of pancake goodness. They have all kinds of pancakes in their menu -- orange-walnut pancake, potato pancake, georgia peach pancakes, and more. Sorry if I don't have any pictures of the pancakes; I guess we were very hungry back then and ate everything before I realized I needed to take photos.

Here is a roundup of my favorite pancake recipes that you might like too.

{1} Best Buttermilk Pancakes from Martha Stewart
{2} Jam-Filled Pancakes from Williams-Sonoma Kitchen
{3} Almond Poppy Seed Pancakes with Almond Syrup from Cooking Classy
{4} Lemon Ricotta Souffle Pancakes from Sweet Savory Planet
{5} Banana Pancakes with Berries from Martha Stewart
{6} Swedish Pancakes from The Church Cook

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Sunday, May 6

Party: Jiggles the Balloon Lady

Getting Jiggles the Balloon Lady as the party host/entertainer for Allie's birthday was one of the first things I did to prepare for Allie's party. I haven't seen her act before the party, but I heard so many good things. I wasn't disappointed.

She came in wearing her trademark red and white striped pique polo, with jeans. After the his and hellos, she started preparing her props for her act. The balloons! She brought her very quiet air compressor, which I really appreciated, and started filling her prop balloons with air. She came with her assistant, who also was in charge with the sounds. Yes, she brought her own music, which was cool, because music was a big part of the games.

[all photos by Resonance Photography]

She made the balloons fresh, so everything was shiny and still full of air. Oh, and if you're wondering, she made the balloon hat on the spot too.

There were only a few kids, so each one took home a balloon art. Jiggles the Balloon Lady made a rainbow,

a ballerina,

even Elmo! Elmo was only borrowed in this picture. It was actually owned by a kid, just fyi.

Another cool thing about her was that she had awesome and fun games for both kids and adults. Everyone had so much fun!

You can never go wrong with Jiggles the Balloon Lady. Just make sure you bring tons of small prizes. I think I prepared about 50 small prizes for everyone.

Her rates are very affordable and competitive. She's great with both kids and adults. She speaks well, and she's very approachable.

Heck, I would get her for my own party!

Jiggles the Balloon Lady
Facebook | Multiply
C: 0920-924-6022 | T: 807-8009 / 807-8040 | email: jigglesballoonlady@yahoo.com
Rates: P7,500 - P9,200 within Metro Manila

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Thursday, May 3

Party: Photo Display

At Allie's party, I had a corner display of her weekly picture since her birth.

Photo by Resonance Photography

I used an old, white-washed birdcage, hung the photos using nylon string and tape, then decorated it further with the paper flowers I made.

Here are some other easy ways to display photos at parties:

{1} Twine / Clothespins

From casa sugar -- If your party is outdoors near some trees, get some twine and clothespins.

Image from casa sugar

{2} Clear glass containers

From bhg -- Use stuff you can find at home, like clear vases, glasses, carafes and insert a black and white photo. This is a great centerpiece idea.

Image from bhg

{3} Numbered photos

From nobiggie -- All you need are the photos and some tape. Okay, and a wall to stick them to.

Image from nobiggie

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Tuesday, May 1

Crafts/DIY: Layered Paper Flowers

My sister made the backdrop for Allie's party.

Photo by Resonance Photography

She's the one who made these cute gift toppers last Christmas too.

For Allie's party, she decided to make giant versions of these flowers.

She used large sizes of white vellum cartolina, colored glassine, sheets of art paper and some single-hole paper fasteners.

Photo by Resonance Photography
This is so simple and easy to do. Here's how --

{1} Cut a piece of square from your paper choice. I recommend starting with the thickest one to make it sturdy.

{2} Fold the square in equal parts as so. Play with the cut that you're going to make -- pointed or curvy... experiment.

{3} Unfold it.

{4} Do the same with your other sheets of paper -- glassine or art paper. Here, you can change the size of your square.

{5} Layer them on top of one another from biggest at the bottom, to smallest on top. Rotate them to your liking.

{6} Finish it off with a fastener at the middle.

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