Restaurant Review: The Movie Stars Cafe

2014-04-28 20.54.22-1

Are you looking for a place to dine where you will also be entertained by a host of popular movie characters? Where the servers are also popular movie characters? Where you can feast your eyes on life-sized models of Spider-Man, Terminator, Shrek, Iron Man and many others? Then The Movie Stars Cafe is the place for you and your family to enjoy.

We were invited to try out their food and entertainment last month and may I say that our family had a blast! When we arrived we were greeted by hosts that looked like Pocahontas. My attention was immediately caught by their entrance design. Upon entering the restaurant, the life-sized characters of Batman, Iron Man and Star Wars are a feast for the eyes.

Movie Stars Cafe 1

The U-shaped dining area provided diners with a view of their stage. Every half hour there is a variety of performances. Some are interesting such as Spider-Man which was like a musical that follows the movie’s story. Others were dance performances like Iron Man and Hairspray.

Dining AreaSource

After the performances, guests can come up on stage and have their photos taken with the performers. They also walk around the restaurant and provide entertainment for guests.

2014-04-28 22.03.43

Diners can have a choice between the Dino Buffet and/or ordering from the ala carte menu. We tried one buffet and ordered ala carte for the rest of us.

msc_menu02Source

I thought the buffet was a little pricey  at P699,00 for the spread that they offered.  But upon talking to the manager, we understood that for the price of the buffet or any ala carte order, you also get to enjoy their shows for free. Looking at it that way, we decided that it’s worth it after all.

Star Movies Buffet 1 Star Movies Buffet 2

Star Movies Buffet 3 Star Movies Buffet 4

The open kitchen made the buffet very interesting. As a customer, I like the fact that I can see how my food is prepared. The availability of the chefs to answer our questions about the food is a definite plus.

We also ordered from the ala carte menu.

2014-04-28 20.48.53

El Grande Pizza

2014-04-28 20.49.20

Karate Kid’s Burger

2014-04-28 20.49.28

A half-eaten Notebook

We definitely enjoyed being there and interacting with the characters. That was very novel. As for the food, it was very salty for us. Even before we went Paleo, we already add very little salt on our food at home. I can’t really tell if the food was really salty or it may just be our personal taste.

We spent more than four hours there and the kids had so much fun! Should you look for a place where food is not the only feature, Movie Stars Cafe is a great option.

Movie Stars Cafe is located at Seaside Boulevard, SM Mall of Asia, Pasay City Philippines

For more info, drop by their website.

The Necessity of a Weight Loss Support Group – Eats Right! Motivational Meet Ups

It’s hard to lose weight, right? I should know because I’ve gone on a roller coaster of weight loss and gain through the years and I was never successful at it. Every time I try to lose weight, I begin with good intentions to exercise and eat less. As the days go by with no one keeping me accountable, I would start skipping days without exercise, or start eating my favorite foods again until I’ve totally forgotten about my weight loss goal.

That was in the past. Now that I’m dead serious about losing weight, I am surrounding myself with people who would help me go on and some who would keep me accountable. As I have written in my previous posts, one of the first things I did was to get ourselves a personal trainer. Next, I announced my goals to my community online and offline. Announcing it helped to keep me on track.

Then I started tracking my successes and telling people about it. Every time I posted an update about my workout, my weight loss, I gained plenty of support from my online friends.

The most recent thing I’ve done is to employ the services of a chef who prepares our Paleo meals at home. On the first week alone, having my meals ready to cook made it easy for me to maintain eating Paleo. Now it’s easy for me to bring food from home when I have to go out to work.

photo_1

I’ve kept in close contact with my online friend, Cheryl of Not Just Yum. Our online chats about our workouts and diet have been a source of motivation for each other.

What I’ve done is to create a network of people who become a source of encouragement for me to keep on going. Not only that, I know that everyone’s counting on me to reach my goal. All of these play a huge part in my efforts to lose weight and be healthy.

Without support and accountability, it would be easy to give up when the going gets tough. But because of the support of the people surrounding me, I am constantly motivated.

So if you want to lose weight and know that you also need help to do it. I’m inviting you to join us at Eats Right! Motivational Meet Ups.

EatsRight_poster

The Eats Right! Program is composed of pep talks and motivational meet ups that are for fit and fab femmes (single, married or married with children, etc.) who want to have a support group in achieving their health and fitness goals this year. The Eats Right Pep Talks will be a series of 5 meet-ups where the ladies will get to do different activities and will learn about different aspects of health, nutrition and fitness. Also, the Eats Right! Pep talks will have a fitness challenge component. During the first pep talk, measurements of all the participants will be taken. On the 5th (last) pep talk, the one with the biggest fat percentage lost will win lots and lots of prizes from our sponsors!

These pep talks were prepared by yours truly (Ginger of MommyGinger.com and the soon-to-be-relaunched site, ManilaFitness.com), fit and fab ladies Martine de Luna of MakeitBlissful.com and Michelle Padrelanan of BeyondSilverandGold.com.

We would like to thank our sponsors who readily believed in the Eats Right! movement. We would like to thank Coach Ian of Without Limits, Lourdes of Nanay Lunches with Love, Farah of Train Station, Aisa of Yoga Plus (love yah, cuz!), Cindy and Liezel from Curves Eastwood and my new friend, Vanessa of Go Steady (love yah, too, girl!).

Okay, the details are in the poster above so if you want to sign up, please use this form:

Padrelanan Challenge Update: Weight Loss In Action

It’s been three months since we went on our weight loss journey as a family. With respect to the other members of my family, I am only sharing my own weight loss updates and not theirs. Maybe sometime in the future I’ll talk about them but for now, I’m all you’ve got. :)

may 2014

Although I did not start losing weight in September, I chose that photo because I’m wearing the same jeans in both photos. In the September photo, I’ve had to really suck my gut in to zip those jeans. For the May photo, it now fits me comfortably. No gut-sucking involved. :)

Here are my stats:

2/28/2014 4/21/2014 5/6/2014 Normal Ranges:
Weight: 234.8 lbs 226.5 lbs 221.6 lbs 106.5 - 144 lbs
BMI: 40.3 38.9 38 18.5 - 25
% Body Fat: 50.8 49.5 51.1 18 - 28
Visceral Fat 18 (high) 15 14 < 10
Waist-Hip Ratio 0.99 0.96 Over
Basal Metabolic Rate 1490 kcal 1432 1908 - 2250
Skeletal Muscle Mass 63.1 60.2 46.5 - 56.7
Body Fat Mass 112.2 113.1 24.5 - 39.2
Body Measurements:
3/4/2014 5/12/2014
Chest: 44.8″ 40.5″
Right Arm: 18.4″ 16″
Left Arm: 17.4″ 15″
Waist: 46.8″ 41.5″
Hip: 73.4″ 50.5″
Right Thigh: 30″ 25.5″
Left Thigh: 31.2″ 25.5″

However, there are a few things about this progress that bothers me. The weight,BMI and visceral fat has gone down but the % body fat, body fat mass has gone up while my basal metabolic rate has decreased. I can’t really explain the technicality of all these terms but in short, this means that I lost weight because I lost some muscle mass. This is not a good thing. What we want in weight loss is to increase the muscles and decrease the body fat mass.  We want more muscle than fat because muscles help you burn fats. So losing muscles will not help. I can only attribute this to the fact that our coach left for awhile and I was not working out as hard as I used to when he was here. He’s back again so I am going to follow through on that.

Did you see that? I’ve lost 13lbs, 4” from my chest, 2” from each of my arms, 5” off my waist and 5” from each of my thighs! I was overwhelmed with joy when I first saw that. Notice the hips? I don’t know I must have made a mistake when I took those measurements because it’s impossible that I’ve lost 20”. Happily, I can’t go back and measure anymore because I am smaller. Yippee! I’ve been shopping for new clothes and I’ve gone down 2 sizes already. Still in the plus size section but from a 4XL, I now fit a 2XL. Crazy amazing, right? I’ve never done this before in my life – lose this much weight.

A friend remarked to me how hard it is to lose weight.  Honestly, yes, it’s hard to workout like crazy in the gym. Every day that’s a training day, I always brace myself before going to the gym because I know it won’t be an easy day with my coach. I’m no longer a beginner, he says, and I know that I can expect a very hard workout. But at the end of a hard workout, I have the satisfaction of knowing that I just made my body do a series of exercises that I couldn’t do in the past. I can lift more weights, do more reps, perform moves that I used to have a hard time doing before. My body has increased in its capacity and efficiency. That’s great progress for this mom who has struggled with weight for the last 18 years.

However, the workout is only a very small part of the whole weight loss game. Because no matter how hard you work in the gym, if you don’t have the foundation of good nutrition, it’s still just as hard to reach your goal. I’ve been learning about nutrition, what kind of foods I should focus on and what I should not consume. One of the worries I’ve had in the past was how to prepare food that would not only help me to lose weight but should also be good to feed my family. It’s become easier for me to follow the Paleo diet because my family and I eat the same foods.

We do try, as much as we can, to follow the Paleo diet by focusing on protein, green leafy vegetables, and giving up foods high in carbohydrates. In the past our family can consume 6 cups (uncooked) rice per day, now it takes days for us to finish up 2 cups (uncooked) rice because only the two little ones consume it now. I love, love, love to eat bread, especially when they are fresh from the oven. But I’ve also given that up for the sake of losing weight. Potatoes used to be a staple in our diet but I no longer purchase potatoes when I learned that consuming potatoes can make my blood sugar spike.

60120_3570076066663_96700954_n

There are still times when I feel some grief that I can’t/don’t want to eat my favorite snacks: McDonald’s chocolate dipped sundae cone with rice crispies (see above photo), potato chips, french fries, chocolate cakes and brownies. When I walk past one of those, I can feel myself screaming and moaning “Why? Why am I on a diet? I can’t eat that!!!” But just thinking of all the weight I’ve lost, the hard work I’ve had to do to lose it, and most especially the weight I still have on me, makes it easier to turn my back on it. Not so easily because I love those foods, but I can.

Here’s what I’ve learned so far – losing weight is basically a mind game. Once I’ve set my mind to it, and not allow negative thoughts of weakness or powerlessness to creep in, I find myself more determined to do what needs to be done.  In the gym, when we are lifting heavy weights, it’s okay to scream, to let out the energy or help you push. One time when I was running on the treadmill and breathing hard, I didn’t know it but I was panting with a high-pitched voice. (Well, I do sing the soprano in choir.) My coach told me if I wanted to let out my voice, I should lower my pitch for more authority. It’s like commanding myself that I can finish the workout. My gosh, in my mind I was thinking, “He noticed even that!” Of course, I followed him and lowered my voice. Voila, it does make a difference! When my voice was high, it’s like I’m whining  “I can’t do it or I’m just a victim of this workout”. When I lower my voice, it’s like I’m saying, “This is not going to beat me. I can do this.” It makes a big difference in achieving your goals when you control your thoughts.

#NoShaveTill200lbs

This morning, a friend who is also on his own weight loss journey posted a photo on Facebook with the hashtag #NoShaveTill200lbs. He’s not going to shave his mustache till he reaches his goal of 200lbs. I have the same goal to reach 200lbs but have no mustache, obviously. So I am thinking of what I can commit myself to sacrificing till I reach my short term goal of 200lbs.

#NoPediTill200lbs? (no pedicures – this is gonna be hard)

#NoStarbucksTill200lbs? (which there should really not be, my coach will most likely give me a sermon on this)

#NoBrowGameTill200lbs? (no eyebrow shaping – this is the hardest of all because I have bushy eyebrows and I maintain it’s shape every 2 weeks)

You’ll find out what I decide to do on Facebook.

And talking about my friend, he is Chef Batch, a fellow weight loss sojourner and Coach Sani’s friend. He cooks up some fierce and tasty Paleo foods for his family and clients. In fact, I have a schedule for cooking lessons with him next week which I’ll be writing about after.

Till my next update.

Guilt-Free Indulgence: Whole Wheat Apple Cake

 

wps_clip_image-9078

In this day and age, it is important to stay fit and healthy as dreaded diseases are progressing as fast as modern technology. But with all the stress you get from work and your personal life, you still need to indulge every now and then.

Cake may be deemed unhealthy but there are a lot of ways to eat cake without feeling guilty about it. Aside from checking the ingredients, portion control is equally important to enjoy cake without stressing about gaining weight or consuming too much sugar. It’s also a great way to take control of your own cravings. Instead of cutting your cake into the usual eight slices, consider cutting it like a wedding cake. In this video clip, Peter Knott, M&S technologist, shows just how easy it is to cut cakes into the perfectly-sized slices:

When your cake is sliced like the way in the above tutorial, you’re not only able to get more servings, but you’re also doing yourself a favor by cutting down on sugar. For the more fitness-conscious, however, baking their own cake might be a better way to go. The best part is there’s a variety of easy and low-fat cake recipes online. Here is a recipe for Whole Wheat Apple Cake:

Ingredients:

· 4 medium apples, cored, peeled, quartered & thinly sliced

· 1 egg

· 1 3/4 cups of whole wheat flour

· 1 cup of evaporated cane juice

· 1 cup of milk

· 1/3 cup of room temperature butter

· 3 tablespoons of ground chia seeds (optional)

· 2 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder

· 1 teaspoon of sea salt

· 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

Instructions:

1. First step is to have the eggs; milk and butter at room temperature, then pre heat the oven to 375 degrees. Blend together all the dry ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl if former is not available. On low setting, whisk in the butter and 1/3 of the milk until well combined. Then put in the remaining egg, milk and vanilla and mix until well blended. Mix the apple slices into the batter using a spatula. Leave some behind for cake toppers. In a prepared cake pan, pour or scoop the batter. Spread the batter out evenly and garnish the top with apple slices.

2. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes. Check if it’s cooked using a tooth pick. If the tooth pick doesn’t come out clean, put the cake back in the oven and bake for another 5-10 minutes. When it’s cooked, allow cake to cool and serve. For added decadence, you can use some maple cinnamon whipped cream as frosting.

Movie Review: The Amazing Spider-Man 2 by PLDT Home DSL

If there’s one thing that PLDT is good at, it is promoting family bonding online and offline. We got to experience this when they treated our family and other families to watch The Amazing Spider-Man 2 at Eastwood Cinema last week.  It’s quite far from where we live but the movie was totally worth watching. Of course, we again met the adorable Diego and his mom Lara Ledesma, the family who manages the very popular Ask Diego fan page on Facebook. Diego is a seven year old boy who gives out advice to his fans on Facebook. He’s asked all kinds of questions but his family makes sure that he is able to answer most of the questions asked by also going online to search for good answers. Here’s Diego’s Mother’s Day greeting:

 

Look at his reply to someone asking about being brokenhearted, I think he’s adorable and right!

 

Lara shares that their family is able to use all their gadgets and stay online all together because of PLDT Home DSL. PLDT Home DSL enables limitless sharing with strong, reliable family-sized connection.

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 Review:

We certainly enjoyed this movie. It is highly entertaining and fast-paced, never boring. I thought that this Spider-Man is more likable than its first installment. He loves his family and thoroughly understands his responsibility as a super hero. The love between Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy is palpable even as Peter tries to stay away from Gwen to stay true to his promise to Gwen’s dad. Gwen Stacy is independent, a young woman with a mind of her own who will not allow others to dictate to her. She is a beautiful role model for young women. The villains, Electro and Green Goblin, were both highly interesting and scary. The movie did not disappoint and left us wanting more. We went home happy and satisfied. PLDT was really able to enhance our family connection through this family movie.

 

Restaurant Review: Beat The Heat with Johnny Rockets Summer Shakes

Two weeks ago, we were invited to cool down at Johnny Rockets Eastwood with other bloggers from Mommy Bloggers Philippines. It’s my first time to try this casual diner and I was excited to see what they had for us. As we were waiting to be served, we were entertained by their dancing servers. I found out that Johnny Rockets is the Home of Dancing Servers. They were very energetic and enthusiastic as they danced. One of the first things that came to my mind was that along with their job interview, they must have shown how well they dance, because they are all good dancers.

2014-04-23 16.56.01

The featured product of the day are the Johnny Rockets Summer Shakes.

10288785_763545300363448_6820926237428351647_n

First, they served the three kinds of shakes in small cups and asked us to taste and choose which one we liked best.  My choice was Hawaiian Breeze which is a combination of pineapple with buko juice. I thought the taste was just right, not too sweet, but definitely creamy. Guitar Babe’s choice was Halo-Halo.  When they served the shakes, I was surprised that each glass came with a tumbler half-filled with more of the shake. It turns out that they serve all their shakes this way. Guitar Babe wondered why they didn’t just serve it in a larger glass. I thought there was a novelty in serving it this way because it gives the customer the idea of being given their money’s worth because Johnny Rockets will give the entire order and not just what would fit in a glass. When I poured in what was in the tumbler, it still filled up the whole glass. Technically, you’re getting two glasses of shakes for one.

JR

Of  course, they also served us their classic gourmet burger – The Original Hamburger which was pretty big served with fries and a happy smile ketchup on the side.  It was so big, I was hardly able to finish it.

2014-04-23 15.58.29 

Johnny Rockets is really a place where families will all enjoy going together. For kids, they have a Rocketeers Summer Camp which really sounds like a lot of fun! It’s open to kids ages 6-12 years old where they will learn how to make ketchup faces, serve and dance like a Rocketeer, and eat lots of burgers and fries.

1229842_745958922122086_974297530_n

One of the things we like about blogger meet ups is that we get to meet other bloggers whose names we have memorized from seeing them online. It’s good to finally see each other in person thanks to the Mommy Lani of Mommy Bloggers Philippines.

PicMonkey Collage

So if you’re looking for a place to dine casually, with food that’s worth the price you pay for and friendly entertainment, Johnny Rockets is the place for you.

JR Burgos Circle                (02) 836-9546                  Open 24 HOURS

JR Eastwood Branch          +632 4702117 / +632 4702208           Open 24 HOURS

JR Tomas Morato Branch     +632 3520693 / +632 3528486       Open 24 HOURS

JR Robinsons Galleria Branch    +632 4776499 / +632 4776501

Mon-Thurs: 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM / Fri-Sat: 10:00 AM to 11:00 PM / Sun: 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM

Like their official Facebook page now:

https://www.facebook.com/johnnyrocketsphil

Visit their website via:

http://johnnyrockets.com.ph/

Remembering Zac on His 2nd Birthday

546713_2330252031837_1979398154_n

Zac’s hand in mine

Last April 22 was our baby boy Zac’s 2nd birthday.  He isn’t here anymore because he is celebrating his birthday in heaven.

A blogger friend of mine who writes for Smart Parenting asked for contributions from people who underwent a difficult trial and now have new hope. I volunteered but was a little unsure if I could actually write about my Zac. You see, after his death, I was so worried that I would forget what happened so I wanted to record everything. I’ve tried many times to write it down but could never finish it. It was just too painful to recall  all that happened to us. In fact, because of the pain, I literally couldn’t write after his death. The act of sitting down and focusing on my writing was too much because once I’m quiet, my mind becomes filled with thoughts of him and our traumatic experience.

Little by little, I found a new hope, a new joy brought about only by the grace of our good Lord. He is our great Comforter and He never fails. Many months after Zac’s death, when the pain was still too much, I realized that I never asked God to comfort me. I asked Him to comfort my kids and my husband and the rest of my family, but not me. I guess it just never occurred to me. So one day, I prayed and asked Him for comfort.

Comfort came in many ways. Peace is the result. I found my peace with God and our experience. And so, last month, I finally sat down to write about my precious baby.  There’s still one part that I still find hard to write about and that’s the last few days he spent at the NICU.  On April 22, on his 2nd birthday, I decided that I’ll be praying for other mommies out there who mourn the loss of their child. I got a surprise when I opened Facebook and found that my article was published a few days before his birthday.

I wrote it to bring encouragement and hope to other moms who mourn. I am one with you and  pray that it will encourage you.

Click on the title to read my article on Smart Parenting. Warning: get your tissues ready before reading.

STORIES OF SURVIVAL AND HOPE: When You Lose A Child

This entry was posted in Grief.

Family Fun Run and The Steps Project

*Read through to the end of the post to register for The Steps Project and get P50.00 off the registration fee.

*Photos by Junrey Nuevas

Last April 12, our church organized a Family Fun Run. We’ve known about this for a month and planned for all of us to join. Since we’ve been working out, we know that we are already conditioned enough to join. Although it is a Fun Run, we took still took it seriously.

TRAINING

One week before this, my coach had me do practice runs on the treadmill at the gym. It was super hard. I never really liked the feeling of catching your breath and feeling the burn in your body while running, but my coach was just as determined that I should run the 1km successfully, never stopping to rest. Two days before the Fun Run, he made me run 1.3km because he said I should be ready for more than 1km. I kept whining all the way and requesting to stop but he was unceasing in motivating me to keep going. Even to the point of telling me

“This is not life and death, Michelle, this is your life! Don’t stop!”

                                                                                      – Coach Sani Adarme

On the day of the Fun Run, we were all up at 3:30am. The two older sisters are to lead in the stretching and warm up exercises. We were all signed up to join – 6km for Guitar Babe and Artsy Princess, 3km for Gary D., 1km for myself, Sunshine Princess and Flash Boy.

BTSATG Fun Run 1

BTSATG Fun Run 2

START STRONG

It’s the first time that I’m going to run again after more than 2 decades of not doing it. I was excited and afraid at the same time. I was afraid that I won’t be able to make the whole kilometer because of my size and weight. But I needn’t have worried because of all the trainings I’ve done with Coach Sani, I was ready for it. I ran on my own pace and didn’t let the others affect me. I didn’t even care that I was running mostly with kids, including my two youngest. I surprised myself because by the 500 meter mark, I wasn’t even panting for breath. I only started breathing hard about 200 meters away from my goal. By that time, I can already see the finish line.

BTSATG Fun Run 3

BTSATG Fun Run 4

BTSATG Fun Run 5

BTSATG Fun Run 6

FINISH STRONG

I passed one of my churchmates who heard me breathing hard and he said, “Sis, pwede namang maglakad.” (It’s okay to walk.) Well of course I didn’t. I can hear Coach Sani in my head telling me, “What if you stop and realize that you’re so near? Don’t finish with a regret that you stopped before getting to the finish line.”

VICTORY

I don’t know how fast or slow I finished the 1km run. What was important to me was that I did it. I didn’t think I can do it, but I pushed myself and did it. All that time, all I can think of is how this is truly my life. This change in my life that I am aiming for – if I can’t finish strong, I won’t be able to truly make a significant change in my life. All my life, I’ve been told that there are so many things I couldn’t do and I believed it. Now that I’m working to change our lifestyle, I realize that my body, mind and spirit are capable of doing even more than what I believed I can do. It’s a victorious day for our family and all glory belongs to God alone.

Yet those who wait for the LORD will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary.  Isaiah 40:31

BTSATG Fun Run 7

BTSATG Fun Run 8

The Steps Project

We’d like to invite you to take your own journey to health and fitness. It’s been great for our family and we’re not going to stop till we reach our goals. Beyond The Silver and The Gold is a blogger partner of The Steps Project. My family will be there and hope you can bring your family, too.  If you use my link to register, you get P50.00 off the registration fee of P350.00. Just put ”BEYONDSILVER” in the “Referred by” box.

Movie Review: Heaven Is For Real – Enhance Family Bonding Through PLDT DSL’s Family-Sized Connection

We had the opportunity to watch Heaven is For Real sponsored by PLDT last week at the Resorts World Cinema.

First, a word about our sponsor:

homedslbannercarousel_1920x400_03-28-14_2

PLDT HOME DSL’S ‘ASK DIEGO’ CAPTURES THE HEART OF MANY

There are a million cute kids out there. And then, there is Diego Ledesma. 

PLDT HOME DSL recently launched a brand new TV commercial on “Eat Bulaga” featuring a bright, handsome and witty young boy by the name Diego and how he stole the heart of many was unprecedented. The precocious little boy is a total show-stopper. 

Following the success of its “Anna Banana” campaign with Derek S. Lorenzo and his family, PLDT HOME DSL brings us another family to show how important family values and strong connections are at home. They are the Ledesma family, and their claim to fame began with seven-year-old Diego, who has tens of thousands of fans on his advice column on Facebook, “Ask Diego”.

The Ledesmas are the perfect fit for the commercial because they are the ideal example of today’s young, urban family: tight-knit, enjoys doing things together online using multiple gadgets simultaneously to help one another out. That’s where PLDT HOME DSL’s limitless and reliable family-sized connection really comes in handy. This kind of strong connection helps keeps the family together, in more ways than one.

Some people initially raised their eyebrows at the thought of a child being on Facebook, but upon learning that values is paramount in the Ledesma household because his parents monitor the page constantly, Diego started getting so many questions on topics ranging on love, studies, and bullying, all the way to vacation and business ideas. Before he sees the questions, Paolo and Lara delete offensive content, and sometimes answer the more difficult questions themselves. Then they help him type out answers, especially when he asks about how to spell words. On occasion, Diego also gets ideas for answers from his Ate Trisha.

“Ask Diego” is fast becoming another iconic presentation from PLDT HOME DSL in the league of the multi-awarded “Anna Banana” campaign series in the last few years. The group’s focus on family values and connection through limitless sharing truly spell the difference.

Check out Ask Diego on facebook.com/AskDiego.

To sign up for your own strong, reliable family-sized connection of PLDT HOME DSL, visit pldthome.com.  

Review: HEAVEN IS FOR REAL

 

“Based on the #1 New York Times best-selling book of the same name, HEAVEN IS FOR REAL brings to the screen the true story of a small-town father who must find the courage and conviction to share his son’s extraordinary, life-changing experience with the world. The film stars Academy Award® nominee and Emmy® award winning actor Greg Kinnear as Todd Burpo and co-stars Kelly Reilly as Sonja Burpo, the real-life couple whose son Colton (newcomer Connor Corum) claims to have visited Heaven during a near death experience. Colton recounts the details of his amazing journey with childlike innocence and speaks matter-of-factly about things that happened before his birth … things he couldn’t possibly know. Todd and his family are then challenged to examine the meaning from this remarkable event.”

(Description taken from the movie website)

Before going into the cinema, we all met the charming Ledesma family. They took time to pose for pictures with some of their fans. Good thing that Diego was very cooperative and smiled his way through the dozens of photos taken with his fans.

Our whole family thoroughly enjoyed this inspiring movie. Thanks to PLDT and Icon Marketing for inviting us to watch this beautiful family movie. Especially touching was how the father, Pastor Todd Burpo, struggled with himself and finally reached his own conviction to believe in his son’s story of Heaven. I was very moved, as a mother who lost a baby through miscarriage, when Colton told his mom about meeting his sister in heaven. Now I see why it’s also important to name even those babies that you lose while inside your belly.

As a Christian who believes in Jesus Christ and heaven, I had some doubts also in how Colton was able to see the face of Jesus which was later drawn by another young girl in another country. But I also believe that God speaks to us in a way that we also understand, as long as our hearts are open to Him. So Colton seeing heaven the way he describes it, seeing members of his family that he has never seen before, seems to prove that he really was in heaven. In the end, the movie will speak to our hearts and our beliefs, if heaven is real. For me, it is real. I know it because it says so in the Bible. See John 3:13, Deuteronomy 30:12, Proverbs 30:4.

The quality of the movie itself was very good, at par with other blockbuster movies. The acting was great, the scenery is beautiful. With its message and cinema quality, I can honestly say that it is worth the money to watch this family movie.

Being In Yoga At ECHOyoga Shala

I first experienced the practice of yoga when I was pregnant with Flash Boy in 2007. I was only able to do it a few times, then decided to stop because of the distance of the place from our home. After that, I enrolled myself in one of those large fitness gyms that had yoga/pilates/tai chi as one of their group exercises. I loved doing that the most because I felt that yoga achieved in 15 minutes what I can only achieve doing an aerobic workout for an hour. When my membership was over after a year, I didn’t have the chance to practice it anymore. Though I’ve been wanting to get back to it, I wasn’t motivated enough to do so. An invitation from fellow  blogger, Janice of The Roller Coaster Ride, to join a yoga class at ECHOyoga Shala was met with much enthusiasm by me and I accepted immediately.

The day before I attend yoga, I was already looking forward to it. I felt that since I’ve been working out for a month, I would have a much better capacity to do the poses. One of the first things I noticed upon entering the shala was how calming the interiors are. The colors and design blended well together so that when you enter, you can forget what’s outside. It helped that it was located on the 3rd floor of the Steps Dance Academy Building at Kalayaan Avenue, Makati, because the street sounds can hardly be heard.

Echoyoga Shala interiors

Our  teacher, Ms. Jeannie Javelosa, took the time to explain the difference of doing yoga and being in yoga. She mentioned other yoga classes that offer yoga as a kind of sport or only doing the poses as opposed to being in yoga. As I understood it, being in yoga is really doing all the steps – the breath, the poses, the values and living it as a lifestyle. She said there should be no demarcation line between the yoga mat and your life.

 

Jeannie upavishta

Ms. Jeannie led us through an hour and a half of gentle yoga since most of us had little to no experience. She is a thorough teacher, gently explaining the moves in detail and correcting us where needed. At the end of the class, I had a very good workout and felt very relaxed. I took home the breathing technique she taught and continue to practice it by myself. She said that even if that’s all we can do for now, that’s already being in yoga. If you’re looking for a new place where you can go to practice being in yoga, and not just practice it as any ordinary sport, give ECHOyoga Shala a go. They also offer Deepening Education Programs, Counselling, Acupuncture and Reflexology.

Echoyoga Shala yoga

Know More About ECHOyoga Shala

Basic CMYK

New Address: 3rd Floor,Steps Dance Academy Building,8465 Kalayaan Avenue (behind Rockwell) Barangay Poblacion, Makati City

Website: http://echoyoga.echostore.ph

Landline: (02) 956.7119

Mobile: 0906.5063958

Email ECHOyogaShala@gmail.com.

Facebook: ECHOyogaShala

Twitter and Instagram @ECHOyogaShala

Contact Persons:

Jeannie Javelosa / email: jeanniejavelosa@gmail.com 0917-8194395

Marilen Elizalde / email: mgelizalde@mac.com 0917-8181152

BACKGROUND:

ECHOyoga is the wellness side of ECHOstore Sustainable Lifestyle, the green retail store. ECHO means Empowerment Care Health and Oneness. Jeannie Javelosa co-owner of ECHOstore has been teaching yoga for close to 15 years, and with her co-teacher Marilen Elizalde, launched ECHOyoga five years back, offering weekly and corporate classes. Today, the two certified yoga teachers bring their passion for wholistic living through yoga in a new space called ECHOyoga Shala, located in Kalayaan Avenue, behind Rockwell in Makati.

Quotes from the owners:

Jeannie Javelosa – “Launching ECHOyoga Shala in a new space is for me a natural extension and addition to support ECHOstore’s philosophy of a sustainable lifestyle. Yoga is my disciplined practice that wholistically connects the Body, Mind and Spirit.”

Marilen Elizalde – “Yoga has always been my grounding that brings me to my center, especially with my life as a busy mother, homemaker and wife. Through teaching yoga, I expand my awareness and can share this beautiful practice with many.”

ABOUT THE NEW ECHOYOGA SHALA

ECHOyoga Shala opens its new space with the objective to offer a wholistic approach to a sustainable lifestyle, strengthen community collaborations and bring a deeper understanding of yoga practice. It is open daily, from 6:30 am to 8:30 pm with five daily classes, weekend schedules and workshops plus a daily early morning Self Practice space.

Yoga in all its varied expressions will be offered to beginners, intermediate and advanced students classes like Gentle Flow, Restorative Yoga, Vinyasa Flow, Ashtanga Vinyasa and Power Yoga. ECHOyoga Shala’s thrust to go beyond just the physical practice of yoga as exercise includes sessions on Meditation, Breath Control (Pranayama) for distressing, and even “Off the Mat” community talks are led by certified and trained yoga teachers, with international experiences. Other offerings include counseling and life coaching sessions, and body-energy work therapies.

If yoga is to be embraced for a sustainable lifestyle, ECHOyoga Shala’s classes, sessions, workshop, community talks are sequenced and offered to guide the students in their yoga practice and discipline to develop a strong healthy Body, a steady focused Mind, a compassionate Heart. The ultimate goal is the development of a personal Self-Practice and tools that can be used for a deeper appreciation of life.

EYS teachers 1