Hiatus Over. Randomness Back.

What’s the focus of my blog?

  • Cafe + Restaurant Reviews
  • Health and Wellness
  • The Law of Attraction
  • Weight Loss
  • Personal Blog

Let’s not categorize this. Just like my college manuscript entitled, The Organized Chaos, that I had a hard time getting approved by my adviser.

I am not getting anywhere with writing and I studied it for four years. I am in a perpetual writer’s block, brain constipation, creative juice drought.

Things I tried to get back to writing:

  1. Followed writers’ group and pages on Facebook.
  2. Read a lot of good and bad books
  3. Google writing prompts
  4. Journal
  5. Google “How to get back to writing”
  6. Meditate
  7. Listen to relaxing music
  8. Research on how to start a hosted blog
  9. Research on how to make money by blogging
  10. Applied for content writer jobs

I tried. Nothing worked until I came across this:

writer

I am as random as I can get. Thoughts flow and mind is faster than my typing speed or how a pen touches my paper.

So now, where I am going at with this blog? I’ll just keep on writing daily. In 2 years, I will be published.

So yes, hiatus is over and randomness is back.

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Ftrip Kay Mam Reyes: Straight Up Good Food and A Place to Chill

Tell me I am old. At 32, I am looking for “Straight up good food and a place to chill” which is exactly the brand promise and tag line of the latest Cavite discovery of Tapa hunter couple also known as me and my husband. And today you stumble upon a good review and a place to go this weekend. You are welcome. 

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As of today, 130 people are talking about it on Facebook. There are 23 five star reviews. 1,180 total page likes – that says a lot.And today – one amazing blog review by yours truly, jadecranemom.

Please visit their page at Ftrip Kay Mam Reyes

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And do not forget their Instagram account:

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Run by a chef and an HRM graduate couple, JM Reyes and Jen Villamil, named after mom, Ma’am Myrna Agahan Reyes, who is a teacher by profession in Noveleta, Cavite – the place is perfect for a homebody like me who is looking for really good food and homey atmosphere which would not intimidate any diner who wants a quick fix for their craving or grab some Mexican goodness with a bottle of beer, or a choice  your classic -silog meal. Who cannot resist a place run by family members who will welcome you in their home. My fondest memories of our home in Batangas is our front porch. The place indeed feels home.

After a hefty meal, you will feel full in your stomach with scrumptious food and your heart with joy of familiarity and close knit community – a family which is the smallest unit of society. My heart is singing. I had to have a selfie with Mam Reyes and I did!

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A small chat before we leave left us exhilarated upon knowing that she was the teacher of my husband’s cousins and Mam Reyes knows the Titas as well. To top it all, JM is also a counterstrike player who knows my husband and a string of common friends they recall in a warm nostalgia and young fun only youth of the 90’s would understand.

In Cavite, I’d say, “Tropa pala yan si idol.” or sometimes “Dre” or maybe “Dangkilala ko pala yun anak ni Mam Reyes.”

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They started with a few really intimate tables. There is free wifi but with cozy two seater table, you diners have to talk and enjoy the moment. Take in the surrounding, savor the time away from your daily hustle in the corporate world like me or whatever it is you are doing.

It opened on February 1, 2016. Staff were only family members until they hire 2 or 3 helpers in a span of 5 months. They offer pick up and are very responsive in social media and phone. They are open from 4PM to 11PM, Tuesdays to Sundays.

Here is the intimate photos I capture on a quiet Sunday night when me and my husband wants to have a date that is reasonably priced and is definitely not fast food. Happy campers, we are.

On a Thursday, I post the latest food trip I had for dinner which is Shawarma Rice from Baga Manila. A friend of mine commented on my Instagram post if I tried @mamreyesfoodhaus – tagging the real account of Mam Reyes.  The rest as they say is written on this blog entry. Haha. It is never gonna be history because I plan to go there on weekends when we are at my mother-in-law’s place in Noveleta.

I received a direct message on how to go there. Gracias. Saturday came and there were thunder and lighting. For a homebody like me, you cannot pull me out of bed on such a weather. Sunday, there is still bit of drizzle but the craving is too strong. As Debie, my friend, said in one of her comments: “Yung cordon bleu talaga ang nag-seal ng deal eh”

Off we go. My husband just came from his long bike ride – Bacoor to Tagaytay and I can say he is 40% hesitant on commuting to Noveleta but I was sure he did not regret our trip.

Something that I love about living in Cavite is the Baby Bus ride from SM Bacoor. We commute and seldom bring a car on our weekend adventures. So here is how you can go there. Straight from my direct messages in IG:

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The landmark:

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If you have a car, you may follow Google map. If you commute, just ride a baby bus going to Cavite City and get off at Noveleta. From there, look for Luzon Development Bank. That is the best landmark I can give. Beside it, there is a tricycle terminal with friendly drivers who will gladly tell you the way to Mam Reyes’ place. There is actually a tarpaulin near LDB which will tell you, you are on the right track.

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When we arrived, I took photos. We ordered. A chat with Jen and I introduced myself as a freelance blogger who goes around Cavite for best food and places. We ordered 2 sets of cordon bleu, Tapsilog, Quesadillas, Angelisas (their own recipe of open-faced crunchy tacos) and chocolate chip ice cream cookie. We devoured the food. Literal na food trip ito. Budget is P300-600 for two.

I highly recommend Cordon Bleu and Angelisas. I searched all of Alabang for the best cordon bleu and this one beats all of which I tried. The sauce made the difference and their signature triple side dish which includes classic atchara, cucumber ensalada and tomato with onion. Angelisas is only P50 with 4 servings. It beats the Taco bell’s pricey ensemble – my taste bud says so. No offense Taco Bell, I still love you.

I am definitely going back and I seldom say this on my reviews.

Date nights will never be the same again. Happy campers. Look at that smile. 😀

Tell me I am old. At 32, I confirm that I don’t only look for “Straight up good food and a place to chill” but also the heart and story of a place which throbs near the aorta and vena cava, that reminds you of home. I remember Sandra Cisneros’ House on Mango Street. This is the part where I create the story and invite you to read the anatomy of a place.

ENJOY THE FOOD AND SEND REGARDS TO MAM REYES AND HER FAMILY. 

Here’s  one photo collage just like a school project dedicated to Mam Reyes (and her family), even if I was not her student.

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Kanto Freestyle: Elevated Karinderya

It’s amazing how social media helps me find best places to eat. A random post from a Facebook friend, a hashtag, a food porn on Instagram can lead me anywhere.

The downside is, if you believe the reviews and some rants, your spirit might be dampened.

So I post a Facebook status to which friends commented with their suggestions and tips. One said, if you never try, you’ll never know. Another told me about the parking space and another what to order. I love social media. Gets you out of your dilemmas. lol

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One fine morning, a friend flew in from Davao and has a window of few hours before she travels to Baguio. I wanted to meet her. Friendship takes effort. Friendship knows no distance  and time. Last time we saw each other was 3 years ago when I brought her to Krocodile Grill at Greenbelt Makati. My shift ends at 6am. All the way from the south, I traveled approximately 24 km via Skyway to Mandaluyong to meet her for breakfast. The question is where should we eat.

I consulted my bestfriend, Google. Kanto Freestyle daw.

I consulted my other BFF, Grab. Malapit lang sa hotel ng friend ko. Just one kilometer from GoHotels Robinson’s Cybergate.

At P140 pesos, peak rate for Grab, we went to find Kanto Freestyle. Manong said, simpleng kainan lang pala. He was listening to our chitchat of what to order like New Zealand beef tapa before he made that remark. Well, dedma.

It is a hole-in-the-wall restaurant. We went to the first branch which is in:

Kanto Freestyle Breakfast, Mandaluyong

Telephone: (02) 4002268

549 San Joaquin Street, Plainview, Mandaluyong City

It was an adventure going there first time. Here is the guide.

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I call it elevated eatery or karinderya not because of the look and feel of the place but because of the gourmet dishes on the menu which lead me to think that it is also a affordable iHOP because of the pancake choices and menu in general.

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Check out how the About page from Facebook:

Tapsihan Uplifted! (Sossy Tapsihan) We’re open 24/7 549 San Joaquin St. brgy Plainview, Mandaluyong City call us thru 4002268

More than a term used for the usual local point of meeting and reference among Filipinos, The term Kanto is a homage to the familiar Filipino source of affordable yet delectable food. What is Freestyle Breakfast…a new term and buzz word

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More then the experience, the food was great and to have shared it with a treasured friend was the best part of it.

The name of the place says it all. KANTO and FREESTYLE. You don’t go there to criticize and complain. I have unlearned the negative reviews and comments. 

See for yourself and rave about it on your social media after. Just like what I am doing. 

It is amazing how you will find a place like this through my blog, my facebook post, my Instagram and hashtags. It might lead you to KANTO FREESTYLE too. 🙂 

Viva Vemouch

Vemouth – the closest thing I get to researching what Vemouch means. However, Vemouth blanc is a 1920’s drink known in the classic The Great Gatsby which I did  a book review when I was 14.

At first I thought it was a fancy Italian restaurant my husband is talking about with much enthusiasm when he and his online gaming friends went for an almost midnight snack – rice and chicharong bulaklak and tapa.

It turns out that it is a “tapsi” place. With Tapsi place I mean, a place where you can dine and order anything with rice and egg and one viand, usually tapa. But at Vemouch, you can customize your meal and even get 3 viands, 1 rice and egg.

So where is this Vemouch place located?

It is located in 849 Sta. Rosa 1, Noveleta Cavite. Here is their Facebook page in case you get lost. They reply to messages.

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At first glance, it look like a family garage. Once you are in, you know that it is. My husband was schoolmate with the son of the owners of Vemouch. I learned that it has been running for almost 5 years already. VIVA VEMOUCH! Let’s put it in Italian frenzy since at first I thought it is.

I love Vemouch for it’s homey atmosphere. If you actually go in the afternoon, there is a feeling of being just in front of a beach. The best thing about it is that the owner mingles with the diners and usually talks about how Vemouch started as I overheard him talking to a couple who did a Sunday stroll in their motorcycle just to find this place.

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When we were  there, my husband’s classmate came and parked after our car and he has to move back to give way to us since we were done eating. That is just one small problem you might encounter since it is a family garage and people just have to be nice. Anyhoo, the usual hi and hellos were exchanged and I was introduced as well. It was a nice bit of a chat with the owner.

Before I forget, we ordered 2 viands each:

Mine is this: Tapa and Lechon kawali with well done egg and fried rice.

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My husband ordered tapa, bulaklak, sunny side up egg and fried rice.

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All for less than 300 with soda and ice.

We were so full and happy. Viva Vemouch!

Until next tapa hunt,

jadecranemom

 

 

 

Coffeeville: New nook

I rate the food and place: ★★★★★

Budget: 300-600 2 persons (this is with dessert)

My husband and I enjoy Saturday or Sunday drive within Cavite. One weekend, we were on the road doing our usual carpool karaoke to the 90’s songs playing on the radio, when we chance upon tangerine-lit coffee place.

I was adamant at first because I was thinking of heavy dinner – with rice. It was my cheat day and why would I not want rice. I was craving for chelo kebab and biryani rice that time.

My husband parked at what seemed a convenient roadside parking along Covelandia. And the rest as they say is history.

*****

Coffeeville is located in Covelandia. It is not easy to miss it as it is well lit with a karaoke bar beside it. They are open from 8:00AM to 11:00PM. Their exact location is:

2nd Floor ZRG Building, Pulvorista St. Covelandia Road, Binakayan

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Price range for our Sundate is: 400PHP

Please see their facebook page  here: Coffeeville’s facebook page

It was probably less than 100sqm space with seats outside. The only thing I want to comment on is the arrangement of tables and chairs. There seem to be a need for better interior design to make better room for diners.

Anyhoo, it was well lit and the walls are decorated with what almost look like a Pinterest wall from my perspective. We had a good time reading them while waiting for our orders.

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We came in at around 9pm and there were 3 tables occupied. I thought it was already time for curtain call when people started swarming in. I heard there are acoustic bands who played there usually during weekends. At that time, no band was scheduled. I would love to catch live music next time and maybe jam with one song.

The Menu:

 

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I was delighted to see the tarp that shows some for their best seller meals before we head up the stairs to Coffeeville. They have Tapang Taal which we both ordered. I had Coke and my husband had white frappucino.

The meal was orgasmic. I think that the rice was herbed and the chef cooked the our eggs as requested: mine is scrambles and my husband’s has to be sunny side up. Tapang Taal was slow cooked to perfection as we can smell and taste the almost caramelized natural oil. We were raving about the meal at first bite. Even the vanilla frap was really something worth blogging about.

We were so happy we want to have a selfie with the chef.

We were so happy we went back the next day for merienda as I want to try their lasagna and coffee. Too bad lasagna was not available but I took some photos nonetheless just so I can have daylight photos of the place. You can see the Cavitex from outside.It is really nice to go there at any time of the day, I would say.

 

One thing I would recommend is that to make the food on the menu available like the following which both me and my husband looked forward when we went back but weren’t available:

Wagyu Burger

Lasagna

We will definitely go back next week!

HAPPY CAMPERS 🙂

Until next visit,

jadecranemom

 

 

 

 

 

Nathaniel’s: From Pampanga with Love

Rate:  ★★★★ Budget: 100-170 Best time to visit: 11AM-11:30AM

Nathaniel’s by NFC (Nathaniel’s Food Corporation) was founded 22 years ago in Pampanga. I was 11 years old and I live in the south. This is the first time I have heard about Nathaniel’s.    It was Ingrid who told me about the lasagna. So I went to Molito one time. I walked around and got really tired checking expensive-looking restaurants there. I walked from jeepney stop through the parking lot and in the restaurant places within Molito area only to find out Nathaniels is located in front of Molito along Alabang-Zapote road. Whew. Do not look far. Sometimes what you are looking for is right in front of you literally.

I am sorry but Puregold has the same color scheme as Nathaniel’s that made it blend and camouflage itself. So I walked inside on a searing Monday lunch time in the business park area.

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For those who would like to visit and dine in, here is the map and the clue where it is located. Just in front of Molito facing Alabang-Zapote road. It is green and blends with 711 and Puregold. If you see screaming blue,white and red Domino’s, just walk a bit.

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And now, the menu. Here is what they offer: click for the menu

I was unsure if it is really the one Ingrid is talking about. Do they really offer lasagna? It seems to me like Amber’s type of restaurant that offers barbeque and pancit malabon. So I checked the menu and there it is. Lasagna at P130.

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I ordered lasagna and buco pandan ice cream for desert. I was on lasagna hunt that time and so I did not look at rice meals though I was really observing people who are having their lunch. Judging from their meals, I can say I will go back for adobo and sizzling daing na bangus.Lunch meals are served with rice and buttered veggies on the side.

I did not finish my lasagna. It was a big serving and a bit off my taste as it was kind of sweet. Nonetheless, the lasagna will still make it to my top 5. It was a generous serving of pasta, meat and cheese baked to almost perfection. I was unable to wait to eat my favorite dessert. It was one of their biggest best sellers.

They have friendly staff and the serving is quick. It is good to have lunch there at around 11:30AM when the office boys and girls are still heading out of the nearby buildings.

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Before you go, do not forget to check out the take out counter full of delicacies, dimsum, desserts, pastries, cake, “kakanin”, rice meals and “merienda”.

Until the next restaurant hunt,

jadecranemom always

 

Almon Marina on My Mind

I am infatuated. No, I am inlove. It’s Almon Marina on my mind.

Almon Marina has been around since 1990. I am a 90’s kid but I learn and get around being picky eater and a certified foodie in my 30’s.

Anyhoo, here is the link to learn more about Almon Marina and  their menu.

I pass this cozy looking place 5 days a week as it is on the way from the inside of Festival Mall to my office at Commerce Ave. I am a picky eater and foodie at the same time but there is something about this place that intimidates me. I never had the courage to get in.

  1. I feel it is pricey. (lack of research, it was just a google away for the menu)
  2. I feel I will be too exposed because of the interior and architecture of the place. It was cozy but too bright.

One afternoon, I found Jen, our German analyst from the office. I went in and had a chitchat as she was done with her meal. We arranged to have lunch the next day. She highly recommended the place and she was more than happy to accompany me. She was fairly new at the office.

So it turned out I had lunch and dinner and then same thing the next day. I FELL INLOVE WITH ALMON MARINA.

The photos say it all.

Budget: 175-300 per person

Off peak: 8PM for dinner; 1PM lunch

★★★★★ – yes 5 stars and I will go there every payday or once a week.I deserve a good meal for working hard everyday being a mom. daughter, wife, leader and all-around woman.

Motherhood: I wake up and I am a mother

Facebook: Sept. 26, 2011

 

Literally, I wake up and I am a freaking mother.

I wake up in the recovery room clad in green hospital gown. It is still hazy and it feels as if I really came from Narnia. It must be the ultimate morphine shot through my spine.

 

The sinister spinster has caved…for real and for good. I am the apathetic one and I am yet to learn all things motherly. I used to say I am deprived of maternal instincts. I hate babies and kids that caterwaul in the middle of the night or in the middle of the day. I hate strollers in the mall. It causes human traffic jam and I can’t enjoy the payday sale. I am immobile and cannot scour for cheap finds because of moms pushing strollers. I thought no one can match my sense of humor and I will give anything to anyone who can make me laugh and I found my husband and I gave the world. 🙂

 

Back in the academe where freedom and non conformity were my favorite breakfast, I say to myself and my roommate Nikka that I am non believer of marriage and love is a chemical reaction and the only child I am going to have is the brainchild I was crafting that night for a short story deadline. Yes. I ate my words like pancakes and hashbrown in the morning. I am married, I have a child and I believe that love makes the world go round. 🙂 Can I just kick myself? My old self will do that to my present self for sure. Who would have thought? The universe has an acute sense of humor.

 

I said, “No photos should be taken after giving birth”. Oh well, I did it myself when Adler arrived in the room.

 

I don’t give a f*ck and a half If I am not wearing my Kohl eyeliner, my cherry gloss and my pinch-me cheek tint – I AM AT MY MOST BEAUTIFUL….because I wake up and I am a mother.

 

So with the audacity of a who-gives-a-rat’s-ass-new-mom, here’s my photo: Married and a Mom.

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A lot to learn and I am one step closer every day.

Motherhood:I Wonder What Happens Outside the Delivery Room

Taken from Facebook Notes: Oct. 11, 2011

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If I can film that day, 9.10.11, I would…Indie style.

 

I imagine my husband pacing outside the delivery room or the waiting area just like what I see in movies. I imagine my mom silently praying but palpitating for her unica hija. I imagine both of them not knowing whether they want to pee or to poop. (Can I get a copy of the scene caught in CCTV of the hospital? LOL). They must have felt that it was the longest minute/hour/day of their lives.

 

I had a preview though. Along Imus on our way to the hospital there was a traffic jam and we were caught in the “counterflow”. Husband got out of the car and screamed at the traffic enforcer, “Manganganak na ang misis ko!”. Just like in movies. And enforcer let us pass. Harhar. Before I give birth I told myself, I want a “wang wang” so I can create a scene getting to the ER.

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Inside it was serene.

 

I was calm and jolly. I was making friends with the resident OBs and the intern and the nurses too. Blabbermouth about to give birth, hear me!

 

I was 9 hours in the Labor Room just across the Delivery Room which is adjacent to the Recovery Room. I had to go through the 3 rooms in order. I was singing How To Save  a Life inside my head remembering episodes of Grey’s Anatomy and House. They did not let me bring anything inside so I had to entertain myself. Besides, it’s my birthday I had to celebrate it with the rest of medical instruments around me.

 

I was actually enjoying contraction after contraction knowing my baby is about to pop out anytime and I silently wished he pops out before midnight so we share the same birthday. I seriously want a Jolli Kiddie Party!

 

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Sedated.

My husband signed the papers so they can cut me open, suture and close.

Baby delivered @ 7:56PM. I woke up past 12mn inside the recovery room.

 

First words I uttered, “Where’s my baby? Is he okay? Kumpleto po ba ang mga daliri?” Seriously. Then I closed my eyes again, Narnia land. Still hazy.

 

They pushed my stretcher and brought me to my room. I heard mom’s, husband’s, in law’s, husband’s brother’s voice. “Si Lon na yun. Si Lon nga yun. Sya na nga.” But I was, sorry for lack of better word, “groggy” from the spinal-epidural. I can’t feel anything. I can’t open my eyes. I was still in Narnia enjoying the snow.

 

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There you go the short version of what happened on 9.10.11.

 

 

I still wonder what happens outside the Delivery Room —- I’ll ask them today.

All I know for now is that I am sure they heave a sigh of relief when doctors announced that we are safe – me and Adler.

 

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I am thinking if I should change the title to: FEAR FACTOR. Fyi, giving birth is my top 1 fear of all times. Not anymore. 🙂