Sunday, December 26, 2010

Having fun at Fun Ranch

I considered it an opportunity of a lifetime when during a bloggers' event, I was given a short time to spend with 3 children among many who joined us during the event and who I just got to know a little that morning. These children whose family live either under a bridge or in a cemetery were brought by a foundation/NGO as our special guests for the day. I was blessed to have been with them even for a very short time.

The Mommy Bloggers' Event was held at Fun Ranch which was a very fitting place to spend a day of fun and excitement for kids and kids at heart. Here, kids rule!

My kids (even my hubby) were so excited when they learned just the night before that we would attend a bloggers' event at Fun Ranch. We have been to many birthday parties held at Fun Ranch and no matter how many times we get to be invited here, I just know my kids wouldn't get tired of this place. Oh yes, to think that they've been here countless times before.

So, you could just imagine the excitement of my new-found friends - my 3 little companions - during the bloggers' event when they rode those nice rides, among them were Fun Ranch Express Train, Ferris Wheel, Plane, swing rides, and Carousel. I was a witness to how their eyes lit up each time they were about to board a ride. I saw the joy on their faces, it almost made me cry. It was the first time they saw and experience Fun Ranch.

I met my new found friends and all the other kids inside the Big Red Barn --a kid-friendly restaurant with free Magic Show at the Fun Ranch. There we all enjoyed the food, games, the mesmerizing and awesome Magic Show and the loot bags prepared by Fun Ranch. After that, I accompanied my 3 little companions to the fun rides, while my own kids and my hubby were having a blast at Go! Speed Racing. And by the way, it was also the "first time" for my youngest daughter (age 1.5) at Fun Ranch.

We all had a very enjoyable time here at Fun Ranch. This is really a great family bonding place! Well, my 3 little companions might not have their families with them but I know, they enjoyed the experience. As I write blog about this, I remember them -Kyla, Zyrel & Mark- and I'm smiling, thanking God for the opportunity of being their mommy, tita, yaya, friend, or just a companion. Thank you, too, Fun Ranch and the organizers for inviting me to this great event.

Fun Ranch gave these kids something that they will treasure in their hearts. The experience of being truly, really kids.

Fun Ranch is located in Frontera Verde Ortigas corner C5, Pasig City (across Tiendesitas). There is also a Li'l Fun Ranch at Westgate Center, Filinvest, Alabang. For more details and for party inquiries, call 706-3029 or 706-3031. Visit their website at

Friday, December 24, 2010

Enjoy While It's Here

What is impossible? I tell you...

It would be impossible to NOT see an ice cream inside our refrigerator. I am NOT kidding. The main reason I insisted of buying a ref with a big freezer was that I wanted to have a space allotted for at least a half gallon of ice cream. My hubby knows about this. Two of the things that make me happy are ice cream and cake.

I grew up in a family who loves having ice cream as dessert, as merienda, as comfort food anytime of the day. Magnolia Ice Cream was the ice cream my mom would always put into our grocery cart. I knew no other brand of ice cream then. In fact, when I was very, very young, I thought Magnolia was the only ice cream that existed in the world. To me, Magnolia was "ice cream" and "ice cream" was Magnolia. Ube has been my all-time favorite Magnolia ice cream flavor. While my siblings would often request for the Rocky Road.

This holiday season, I have tried two of Magnolia Ice Cream Christmas Limited Edition Flavors - Caramel Cheesecake and Apple Strudel. The other flavor that I have yet to try is the Vanilla Praline. Yes, Magnolia Ice Cream would surely be on our table for our Noche Buena and Media Noche. I wouldn't make a mistake of not having a limited edition variant for our whole family to enjoy and savor.

My daughters enjoying the Caramel Cheesecake

When I bought the Caramel Cheesecake and Apple Strudel, we still had one half gallon of Magnolia ice cream inside our freezer. But the moment I learned about their Christmas Limited Edition Flavors, I couldn't wait to buy and try them all. And yes, when my family and I tasted the Caramel Cheesecake and Apple Strudel, we were not disappointed. My kids love the Caramel Cheesecake that has cheesecake bits and streaks of caramel ripple in a vanilla ice cream base. The caramel taste is just right. It's not too sweet.

Caramel Cheesecake after being scraped by my daughters

My husband and I, on the other hand, love the Apple Strudel. I tell you, I've never tasted anything like it before. It was like eating a scoop of Christmas. It has a very unique yet very familiar taste. I just couldn't describe it. All I know is that I love it! Aside from its taste, one more thing that I love about it is its color combination - red and green, which is so "chrismassy". The apple cinnamon bits with crushed chocolate pretzels swirled with green and apple ripples are perfect for my taste buds. Too bad, it's only here for a limited time. But, maybe if I make a request to Magnolia to make it one of their staple flavors or signature flavors hereon, Magnolia will grant my wish. So, here's wishing that my wish will come true.

Writing about my family's Magnolia Ice Cream experience - then and now - makes me want to have a cup of ice cream now. Let's see, which flavor would I have???? Maybe, a combination of both.

On my next grocery list, I will surely not forget Magnolia Ice Cream Vanilla Praline. I'm sure it would be another great flavor! Hey, it's never too late to try them. Let's all enjoy them while they're here....

You, too, can share your Magnolia Ice Cream Limited Flavors experience by joining the Magnolia Ice Cream blog contest.

Check out this link to find our more:

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Paving the road to her success

All our 3 daughters were born prematurely. Our eldest, Nisi, was born at 32 weeks gestation with her weight just 4.10 lbs. She was so tiny and looked like an old woman because of her wrinkled skin. She had to stay in the neonatal ICU for about 3 weeks, inside an incubator. Everyday, my hubby and I would visit her and deliver to her my breastmilk. Almost everyday then, I would go out of the neonatal ICU room with tears in my eyes. She was our first baby and I was just longing to hold her and bring her home with us. That was 10 years ago.

Today, our first baby is all grown-up, healthy and cannot be mistaken for someone born prematurely. She loves sports. She took up soccer lessons two summers ago and did good in that sport.

Now, she's into swimming and I couldn't believe that she would excel in swimming just as well. In fact, I myself, couldn't believe how good she was until I watched her in one of her swiming lessons. We decided to let her continue with her swimming lessons for the whole year because her coach says she definitely has potential to be a champion swimmer someday.

As parents, we want all our children to be God-loving and well-rounded individuals. When it comes to academics, we only have few conditions -- that she will maintain good grades and be a responsible student. By being responsible we mean that she should know her duties as a student and a daughter. At a young age, we taught her that her grades are her "own". Her grades are not for us, but for her. We DO NOT pressure her to study her lessons. What we are teaching her is to make correct decisions and face the consequences of her decisions, whether good or bad.

Nisi has also a passion for reading. One of our favorite family-bonding moments is going to bookstores and spend so much of our time inside just browsing over books. I remember that at a very tender age of 5, she had been reading pocketbooks already. Now, she has the complete series of "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" and is slowly building up her "39 Clues" collection. She's also fascinated with Kid's Almanac.

When she was in first grade up until she reached grade three, her study routine had too much of my involvement. By that I mean, before she would do her assignment, she would, most of the time, wait for me to come home first and teach her whatever assignments she would have. Now that she's in grade four, she's much much more independent in terms of studying her lessons and doing her homework. We're glad she maintains good grades in school despite the many distractions kids have nowadays, i.e. internet, computer games, etc. I have kept her certificates of recognition given every quarter to students with grades above 95% since she was in pre-school until now that she's in grade four and they were plenty. But what we love most about her school life is the fact that she has many friends and is well-liked by others in school.

From a very shy little girl, she's now blooming to be an active, healthy and well-rounded individual who happens to love God. And I'm proud of her.