The square root of 484

Never did I imagine that my birthday this year could still be special. The past few months were very tough and rough for me. I've encountered several trials and celebrating my birthday wasn't even on top of my mind; it didn't bring any excitement to me. It was as if it's just an ordinary day yet again. My birthday this year had a lot of firsts- first birthday without Daddy, first time not to celebrate it with my family and friends in Tarlac and first birthday on a working day.

However, I realized that even though there were a lot of things missing in my life, I still felt so loved and appreciated because people around me had their own ways of making my birthday a special and happy one.

I'd like to share some birthday greetings and some people who made me smile on my special day. :)

1. My workmates in Ateneo. I never expected anything from these people but I appreciate how they did everything to make me happy on my day. I have the best workmates ever!

I always acknowledge the first person to greet me on my birthday. For this year, my first birthday greeter was my colleague, Nico.

Besides his phone call, this bully greeted me on instagram and posted these pictures of mine. Thank you Nico ha?  -_-

My co-teachers in Araling Panlipunan (AP) Department

Some of my closest friends in AHS (and my fellow UP alumni) - Belle, Marv and Jam; My girl friends (Jam and Belle) even did an AVP for me. I just can't upload it here yet because the video was saved in a CD. Plus, the letters they gathered from some of my workmates in Ateneo brought me to tears. You girls are the sweetest that's why I love you to bits!

2. My students. My first year boys may be rowdy and silly at times but they are the sweetest! I am one lucky teacher for having them as my students. :)

1-D boys

1-H boys

thumbs up for my student from 1-H for the effort to do this :) 

1-K boys

1-M boys

One student from 1-M gave me these "birthday candies"

3. Also, I'd like you to meet my cutest birthday greeter in school - Zak Capinding (son of Mr. Ron Capinding, AHS' Associate Principal for Student Affairs). :))))

4. After school, I had a little celebration at home with my family in QC.

Our newest baby in QC, Coco! <3

5. My family and friends in Tarlac. Though I wasn't able to spend my birthday with my family and friends in Tarlac on the day of my birthday, I had to do some catching up when I got home from QC. We were still able to have a post-birthday celebration (and thanksgiving celebration too for passing LET).

To every single person who made my birthday a special one, I have nothing but grateful words to say to you. THANK YOUUUUUU!! REALLY!!! :)))

P.S. Go figure why the title of this blog post is "the square root of 484". :-p


Photo Diary: Quick, Spontaneous Getaway to Sagada

How do you define spontaneity? In my context, it was when my relatives decided to go on a trip to Sagada just the day before the 30th of November. We really had no plans, no itinerary, no bookings, etc. We just packed our bags and left early in the morning of November 30.

My uncle drove from Manila to Baguio. From Baguio, we decided it's better to commute since the road to the Mountain Province is steep and unfamiliar to my uncle so we took a bus en route to Bontoc. It was more or less a 5-hour trip from Baguio to Sagada town proper but the view was amaze balls! :)))) Plus, I loved the cold weather!

Our breathtaking view on the way to Sagada.
At the stop over, we tried the local version of yoghurt in the Mountain Province.
When we reached Sagada town proper, we were all very hungry. And what's the first thing a hungry person would do (especially in my case)? FOOD TRIPPPPP!!!

Sagada Lemon Pie House

Salt and Pepper Diner

Bana's Cafe

I'm not a fan of coffee but the coffee here actually tastes good. :)
Yoghurt House

Strawberry Cafe 

From a pig out adventure, below is our actual adventure - CAVING!

Lumiang Cave - where some of the burial coffins of Indigenous People (IP) in Sagada are found

The weather was really cold but I just have to wear shorts so I'll be more comfortable when doing the caving activity in our next destination.

Sumaguing Cave- we were inside the cave for almost an hour and a half. We survived this caving experience - from climbing the steep, slimy rocks to the rappelling activity and of course the darkness of the cave. :))

There's a lot more to eat at and do in Sagada but we were pressed with time. Hopefully, I could come back again with some friends and do the more challenging caving activity - the 4-hour cave connection experience. :)


TALES OF A FOODIE: Bon Appetit at Bellini's

If you want to make me happy and if you want us to get along well, there is one thing you can do to tickle my weak spot - bribe feed me with lots of food!!! Food is definitely one of my stress relievers and after a hard day at work, I think I deserve some "me time" by spoiling myself with gastronomic food at a fine dining Italian restaurant - Bellini's Cubao branch (there is another branch in Marikina).

I first knew about Bellini's when it was used as a setting in the Star Cinema movie One More Chance. I've had several attempts to go here with my high school barkada because we want to "experience" that One More Chance vibe since this movie is one of our favorites. hihihihi. :))) However, I don't know why we weren't able to pursue our plan to have a nice dinner at Bellini's. 

After 7 years, I finally had the luxury of time opportunity to try Bellini's even if emptying my wallet is what at stake huhuhu hahaha (bipolar?)

with my colleagues in Ateneo

Mediterranea Pizza

Three Platter Pasta

complimentary cocktail drink after eating

When in Bangkok

I gotta say this has to be my most memorable trip so far because of two reasons: 1) this is my first out of the country trip with two of my closest friends and 2) this is my FIRST EVER TRIP PAID THROUGH MY OWN HARDWORK (yessss capslock mo para intense! hahahaha) It feels so good to spend your hard earned money to something that you really love to do. I have no regrets in spending my savings even though draining my bank account is what it takes to travel. :))))

Here are photo snippets from my Bangkok trip with two of my closest friends since grade school.

1. Arrival at Suvarnabhumi International Airport + first night in Bangkok

2. The Temple of Standing Buddha

3. Wat Arun Temple

4. Samphran Elephant Ground and Zoo

The Elephant Show

5. Grand Palace Crystal Park

6. My trip won't be complete without FOOD TRIPPIN'

Street food: Fresh Pomegranate drink, Thai version of mangoes and guavas 

at Nooddi Thai Restaurant

Sweet tooth satisfaction at Pakdee: green tea cake, mocha cherry almond cake, fresh fruit cake and Thai iced tea