There are a lot of things about Greenwich that make people want to come back again and again. For one, their dishes transport taste buds to a whole new level with fast favorites preferred by groups of friends and families.

Now, Greenwich is taking on a new spin with its newest concept store and its popular Lasagna Supreme that complement Greenwich's popular pizzas. 

This 2014, join us in welcoming Greenwich's new look in SM North Edsa. The Greenwich Pizzeria's interior was designed to make diners get that familiar and homey feel thanks to the use of wood and brick elements that will also transport you into feeling like you're inside an authentic pizzeria.

This new store concept features a lounge, main dining area, balcony, banquet, and an enclosed dining space for those who'd prefer to have a quiet group meeting or a boisterous gathering like what we recently had there. Seats vary from couches, booths, tables, and longer spaces complete with bar stools.

I like how small touches here and there, such as the funny framed quotes and colorful ceramics, tie everything together to make the Greenwich Pizzeria feel like home.

The comfortable ambiance will definitely make meals with loved ones memorable while everyone gets to enjoy some of the best-tasting and best-value pizza and pasta dishes offered throughout the country.

Don't forget to order the Lasagna Supreme that has creamy white and chunky red sauces mixed with melted cheese that combine savory flavors and meatiness to bring about satisfaction in every forkful. 

Whether you're already a loyal Greenwich customer or a curious foodie, enjoy some barkada moments at the Greenwich Pizzeria and savor all the goodness this new store has to offer. Who knows, you might just bump into a familiar face there like I did :)

I think one of the top concerns of working moms is making sure meals served at home remain healthy despite everyone's busy schedules. I personally find it hard to make time to cook really good dishes during those days I need to be away from home most of the day. 

Pork Estafado, cooked by our group!
So I wholeheartedly welcomed the news that Hunt's is launching a series of webisodes that will teach moms how to prepare simple yet exciting recipes that busy homemakers can whip up in a jiffy. Hunt's, the tomato and spaghetti sauces brand, has indeed taken home-cooking to new heights for many Filipino moms.

DJ Delamar Arias doing a cooking demo
Now, being a kitchen superstar is made really possible as moms can easily spell the difference between standard and supreme when it comes to cooking heartwarming meals for the family. The Hunt's Kitchen Superstar webisodes, hosted by Inez Bernardo, each last for just a minute and a half and aims to help homemakers how to prepare creative and delicious Hunt's-based dishes.

another group's dish -- Chicken Curry with Hunt's Tomato Sauce
Marcia Y. Gokongwei, BU General Manager for Joint Ventures, says, "We can guarantee that with Hunt's Tomato and Spaghetti Saucess, being a kitchen superstar is a reality for today's modern moms because these products help them prepare superstar meals every day."

Pasta with Sardines
Hunt's products, which are made from vine-ripened tomatoes and packed with a nutritional bonus thanks to its Lycofiber ingredient, enhances the flavor of popular dishes and fortifies them with the benefits of lycopene and real tomato fiber.

event hosts checking out our Pork Estofado
"With its rich heritage and long-standing tradition of bringing together great taste and tomato goodness in no time, Hunt's is proud to have delivered more than 30 years of home-cooked goodness to every Filipino household," adds Marcia. 

another group's pasta dish
Those of us who attended Hunt's recent event in Holiday Inn's F&B Restaurant found out for ourselves how easy it really is to make superstar meals. Our group gamely tried our hand at preparing Pork Estofado using Hunt's Pinoy Style Tomato Sauce and successfully served a delicious dish as validated by DJ Delamar Arias who co-hosted the activity :) 

Our cooking group
with Enzo of JuanManilaExpress and Ryan of AnakngPasig
Whip up your own superstar culinary creations! Make sure to watch Hunt's Kitchen Superstar webisodes. Like or visit for more updates.

When was the last time you ate at a Kogi Bulgogi branch? I have my personal favorites in their menu and discovered another one!

Kogi's delicious Kimchi
Kogi Bulgogi now has its own version of the juicy, crunchy and tasty Korean Fried Chicken. At Kogi, you just say KPOP Chicken (short for Korea's popular chicken) and they'll serve you with this tasty dish available in two flavors.

KPOP Chicken Sweet Soy flavor
I tried both Sweet Soy and Spicy Soy and both are lip-smacking tasty! Served with sweet or spicy sauce sprinkled with sesame seeds and chopped green onions, these chicken pieces are crispy outside and juicy inside. You may want to partner them with Kogi's Kimchi Rice or the Bibimbap for a fully satisfying meal! 

KPOP Chicken Spicy Soy flavor
Trivia: Kogi's KPOP Chicken is also known as Yangnyeom chicken in Korean, a dish prepared Korean-style that is often served at home but is also available in bars or eaten as snacks after meals in Korea.

Although there are only two versions at the moment, Kogi says the KPOP Chicken will eventually have more unique flavors as well as various spice levels to choose from. 

There are lots of other dishes you may want to order when dining at Kogi Bulgogi. My constant favorite there is the Japchae while my hubby is a big fan of the Kimchi. Please check out my other blog post to see more dishes to choose from.

Yomamte strawberry frozen yogurt bar -- another must-try at Kogi!
For now, make sure to visit a Kogi Bulgogi branch soon to have a bite of the KPOP Chicken. It sells at P125 for 4 pcs, P185 for 6 pcs, and P365 for 12 pcs. Another good news is that customers can ask for a combination of flavors per order!

inside Kogi Bulgogi Gateway Mall branch
For more info and other updates, please follow @kogibulgogiph on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Successful people have two top things in common – passion and commitment. And these are brought about by what inspires them whether it is a great desire to fulfill a dream, a longing to bring about change, or a great love for family or country.

Individuals who have already identified their sources of inspiration are likely to be more driven in the pursuit of their goals and go as far as pushing limits to make things happen. 

In our case, my husband and I wake up each morning determined to work doubly hard for our family so that our kids get the education they need to help them become successful adults in the future. We also make sure that we get to enjoy the fruits of our labor by budgeting for outings that further strengthen our bond as a family.

This year, Multivitamins + Minerals + Deanol + Ginseng Extract (Pharmaton) recognizes people who are inspired by their passion to create a positive change in the country and wishes to support them and promote their undertaking. 

Last March, the first two Pharmaton Life Chargers were introduced. Hindy Weber Tantoco and Maxie Abad are individuals committed to a vision and are driven by the desire to raise the quality of life for themselves and for others. More importantly, they have the sustained energy to live out their passions and thereby, create positive change.

Hindy has been an icon in the fashion industry, a mother of four, and acknowledged for promoting a holistic way of life through Holy Carabao Farms and Balik Bukid in Sta. Elena, Laguna where she is in-charge of Creative Direction and Marketing.

She shares that her inspirations are her children and nature -- two of the most beautiful things in life. Her dream of simply wanting to put better food on the table for her kids gave birth to their holistic, biodynamic farm that is now a thriving business.

Personally, I admire her for choosing to do organic farming as I also advocate for healthy and natural food. With her, picking out fresh vegetables for making smoothies comes as naturally as walking around the farm with her children. 

This young-looking mom is likewise driven to uplift the lives of others. For more than a decade now, her work in fashion allows her to bring more beauty outward. And with her involvement in organic food and farming, she helps other people feel better inward because of the food they eat. 

Maxie, on the other hand, is a lawyer, a triathlete, a former player of the Philippine National Football Team and founder of Manila Soccer Academy (MSA). He is also married and a father to three sons. 

His love for football started at an early age which gets him to reminisce on his days whenever he sees the kids he coaches having fun on the field. Maxie coined “Passion for football”, words that are sewn in the jerseys of MSA coaches intended to inspire the kids when they train. He believes that when one is inspired, passion will come and everyday, one can find something that ignites it. Now that is a beautiful outlook!

1996 ASEAN Football Championship, Singapore
It’s moreover inspiring to discover that even in his Legal Counsel get-up, this enthusiastic coach can  encourage an audience to try a few basic football drills! After all, with his vast experience as Captain of the Philippine National Football Team and his participation in high-level competitions, it’s not surprising that Maxie can talk about his career in football with great flair. 

Hindy and Maxie are admirable for managing their busy schedules well while maintaining the quality of life they want. They both let Pharmaton complement their healthy eating and exercise. As Maxie affirms, “what you put in, you get out.” Being an athlete, he sees the value in getting support from Pharmaton for physical and mental activities. Hindy adds that no matter how good the food we eat is, there are still environmental, emotional and mental stresses we encounter. One has to have really good energy or “life force,” as she calls it, for busy days with the family and at work. 

These Life Chargers acknowledge the boost in energy that they get from Pharmaton, giving them the lasting vitality needed to live out their passions and stay committed to their visions. They likewise express their appreciation with Pharmaton for giving recognition to their work and their desire for positive change.

A lot bonding activities can help strengthen ties between parents and children. One of our most favorite things to do, and which we miss doing more often these days, is going on family picnics. When the kids were still small and we were still living in Los Banos, Laguna, we'd often head to Baker Field inside UPLB during the afternoons and bring snacks to munch on. 

1996 -- picnic in UPLB Baker Field
My husband and I have happy memories of our kids toddling on the grass, of students playing various sports, of young people learning to ride a bike, and of other families who were also simply enjoying the cool breeze and the company of each other.

These days, we seldom get to go on picnics because there are no ideal picnic grounds near our place in Muntinlupa. But when we do go home to my province in Rizal, Laguna, we enjoy preparing food to bring to my mom's small "farm"at the foot of Mt. Cristobal

2008 -- extended family picnic in Laguna
This summer, I'm hoping to revive at least a bit of our picnic traditions by planning a visit to our old stomping grounds in UPLB. It would be great to see my friends and have a picnic together. Our last time was the despedida for one of our close friends who migrated to Australia.

If you are near or have access to any place where you can spread a mat and enjoy food together while enjoying nature, that's the best place to have a picnic! Here are some tips that could help make picnics more fun for everyone:

2009 -- a picnic with friends and our kids
1. Bring the essentials. Bring one or more big mats for everyone to sit on and to place the food items on. If you have senior members of the family going you, consider bringing some foldable chairs for their seating comfort. Pack utensils (spoons and forks), knife, small cutting board (if needed), plastic cups, table napkins, bottle opener, etc.

2. Prepare food items depending on the number of people and the time of day you're having a picnic (either for lunch or snacks). It's best to choose dishes that don't spoil easily like adobo, barbecue,  sandwiches, boiled peanuts, sweet corn, and some finger foods. Don't forget condiments like salt and pepper. If you have a cooler, make sure you put ice with the drinks to keep them cold. This container is also ideal for storing cheese or salads made with mayonnaise so they don't spoil in the heat.

2009 -- my son and my friend's son during one of our barkada picnics
3. Pack some fun stuff such as balls, kites, frisbees, jumping rope, etc. that both kids and adults would enjoy playing games with. 

4. Protect everyone's skin by making sure you also have sunscreen, insect repellant lotion or spray, hand sanitizer, and wet wipes. If your picnic location doesn't have a lot of shade, you may likewise want to bring a pop up shade tent or big picnic umbrella.

2011 photo during the Nuffamily Day in Tagaytay
5. Plan for the after-picnic tasks. Have a big trash bag ready for your disposables as well as aluminum foil, plastic wrappers, or extra container with lids for the leftovers. Make sure to clean up and leave your picnic area better than you found it.

So, are you excited to have a picnic soon? FYI, this coming May 10, there would be a Jollibee Grand Picnic event to be held simultaneously in Manila, Laguna, Pampanga, Cebu, and Davao. The Family Bee Day aims to encourage families to go and have fun outdoors. And you can be part of this grandest picnic ever which will make for a special and memorable Mother's Day weekend for your family!

Got questions? Check out Jollibee's FAQs about the family picnic here or log on to for more details. Buy your tickets, bring the whole family, and have fun! :)

2014 is said to be a big year for entertainment. That was affirmed by Mr. Chung Lyong Lee, Samsung Electronics Philippines Corporation (SEPCO) President and Managing Director. In a remarkably creative event with a Roman era theme at Blue Leaf Filipinas in Aseana City, the leader in innovation and design launched its latest TV model release: the World’s First Curved Ultra High-Definition (UHD) TV as well as a new product lineup aimed to fulfill the needs and desires of Filipino viewers.

I found the Samsung Curved UHD TV really impressive because it boasts of crisp picture quality that's four times more powerful than that of an FHD screen along with a change in perspective that makes images appear larger and true-to-life. Unlike flat screen TVs, the special curved screen allows for a more realistic viewing experience even from different angles—ensuring that everyone gets the best seat in the house. I think that will make a lot of big households happy!

In addition, the combination of the curved screen and Samsung Proprietary Auto Depth Enhancer UHD technology automatically adjusts contrast for a greater sense of depth and gives a 3D-like effect without requiring glasses. Viewers get to see images coming to life in spectacular color, clarity and detail that only Samsung can give. Really amazing! The color is moreover enhanced using the PurColor technology, which reproduces hues for even more detailed expressions.

Likewise, Samsung incorporated a user-friendly operating system to make the Curved UHD TV easy, fast, and fun to use. I was very fascinated with  the super cool remote control that's unlike any I've ever seen before! Then there's also this multi-link screen feature that allows dual screens to process separate tasks that operate alongside each other. 

Too, side-by-side enjoyment of multiple entertainment portals (think comparing the trailer on vis-à-vis its original cut on Bluray) is now made possible by Samsung’s innovative TV line. You won't have to worry about cutting down on speed performance because of its upgraded processor, the Quad Core Plus, which delivers quicker loading and navigation through tasks and commands. Now, you can browse through the panels for apps, multimedia content, NewsOn features and more with the swift speed of the Samsung SMART TV. 

The Curved UHD SMART TV is available in 78-inches, 65-inches, and 55-inches in all Samsung outlets nationwide. It sells in the range of P300K to P500K depending on series and size.

Apart from the curved UHD TV, Samsung has also tailored its 2014 product lineup with the Filipino viewers in mind. Since we are a country of social media and internet-savvy users, Samsung TVs have internet capability! They also have the Family TV feature that allows for Screen and Sound Capture so you can save your favorite moments on screen for future viewings. All these are automatically and conveniently stored in your USB for easy access.

Love watching sports? There's the Soccer Mode that provides more enjoyable sports-watching experience with optimized picture and sound quality. Soccer fans can now zoom in, auto and manual highlight, and record moments throughout the game for a more interactive and closer look at their favorite sport. And for those hungry for local content, there is Clickplay, (the only Philippine Video-On-Demand App with Hollywood content,) and NewsOn page powered by Yahoo PH. The Flat UHD TVs start at P150K to P400K depending on series and size.

Completing the immersive experience to keep life and design in tune is Samsung's ultra-slim HW-H600 SoundStand, which is a complete audio system that can be wirelessly connected to a SMART TV for the full effects of surround sound television enjoyment. It’s sleek, low-profile design is fit for small spaces around the home, such as the bedroom, and is powered by Multi-Direction technology that creates richer sound and high quality acoustics. The HW-H600 can easily be paired with 32” up to 55” Samsung SMART TVs.

As always, Samsung continues to set the bar in innovation worldwide, combining ground-breaking features with unmatched performance and design to create products that match and anticipate consumers’ needs and desires.  Check out Samsung’s newest lineup of products in appliance stores nationwide.

We all have a lot of childhood memories, many of which, I'm sure, more or less shaped us for who we've become as adults. 

In Games People Play, an Ateneo Fine Arts production written by Palanca awardee Glenn Sevilla Mas,  three characters try to understand why they are the way they are by revisiting their childhood, specifically the games they used to play with each other when they were still very young.

Luna, played by Thea Yrastorza, is a trusting girl who becomes a nun pursued by the most lustful dreams. Watch why she became that way no thanks to her kooky parents who have some of the most funny scenes in the play.

Diego, played by Kalil Almonte, is a confused and fatherless boy who becomes an even more confused young man, while Julio, played by Abner Delina, is an effeminate boy who grew up to be an unhappy gay man.

All three actors excellently played the main and supporting characters. It was amazing to watch them transform into various people in seconds with just a few props and the quick changes in voice, body language, and facial expressions. I'd have to mention that Abner playing Consuelo, Luna's mom, and Kalil, playing both Julio's sisters were really such a hoot! You will definitely laugh out loud as we did when you get to watch them do so.

Audiences really enjoyed at the hilarious moments and we also sympathized with the characters during the sad parts. Each of the games they played represents a rite of passage and a significant moment in their coming of age. 

According to the playwright, the story was inspired by a quote from child psychologist and writer Bruno Bettelheim: "The monster a child knows best and is most concerned with [is] the monster he feels or fears himself to be." 

Definitely, this play will leave you with introspective thoughts about your own childhood and those of the people you regularly interact with. It will make you wonder why some individuals grow up to be full of positivity, why others only seem to find the worse in others while many fall in between the two categories. 

Congratulations to Thea, Kalil, and Abner for such wonderful performances; Sir Glenn for the great story; Teresa Barrozo for the haunting and whimsical original music and sounds; director and Ed Lacson Jr. for the minimal but very creative set design; and the rest of the production team. Thank you Tita Toots Tolentino for introducing us to this unique and Proudly Filipino play!

Catch Games People Play at the Ateneo Black Box Theater until this Saturday, April 27, only. Make sure to reserve tickets early because they're running out very fast. For updates, please like

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