It's our final day at Singapore, which surprisingly was difficult to plan for because we didn't know what exactly we wanted to do or visit for our last hurrah. Eventually I decided to take the kids to KidZania Singapore, an indoor theme park which promises an interactive learning experience where kids could become whatever they wanted to be—a doctor, a fireman, a pilot, etc. We got on the Sentosa Express again, stepped down at the last station, and walked all the way to the large building with an airplane sticking out of its front. Thinking that it was going to be some sort of playhouse x 1000, I told Jayson I'd take the kids myself, while he tours his mom and sister around the island. What I didn't expect were the different . . .
Singapore 2019: A Day at Universal Studios
Happy 5th birthday to my youngest son and my personal bodyguard, Noah! ? This photo's taken on the bus heading to VivoCity Mall where we'll be able to catch the Sentosa Express. It'll take us to Resorts World Sentosa, where the kids will finally get to have their fun at Universal Studios Singapore. The kids have been waiting for this day for months, talking nonstop about what they'd do and the rides they're gonna get on. It's heartwarming to see just how happy they are now that they're finally at its doors. Noah was especially excited because he gets to visit The Lost World where his favorite dinosaurs are waiting for him. While he wanted to make a beeline for the park, we managed to convince him to try all of the rides, . . .
Singapore 2019: Singapore Zoo + River Safari
If there's one place I wouldn't hesitate to splurge on plushies and stainless steel tumblers, it's Wildlife Reserves Singapore. We visited two of their famous attractions for our second day in the country: Singapore Zoo + River Safari. I want the kids to see, smell, hear, and learn about these beautiful creatures they've come to know by watching Wild Kratts. We hopped on the SAEX bus for the 50-minute drive to Singapore Zoo. It was a pretty smooth ride, despite the 25-minute delay the kids wouldn't stop yapping about. We eventually arrived, and thankfully the weather was just right. Singapore Zoo's our first stop, and they were running this exhibit called Dragons & Beasts: Where Inspiration Meets Reality where visitors can . . .
Singapore 2019: Arrival
No matter how optimistic I envision myself to be about writing travel updates on schedule, Body and Mind just don't give a damn if rest comes a-knocking. The trip from the Philippines was a long and tiring one, no thanks to Philippine Airlines for making us get up at 3am, only to wait more due to a 3-hour delay. But we're finally here in Singapore, and we made it to our hotel, The Quay Hotel, safe and sound! This is our second visit since 2012—7 freakin' years ago—and the kids are so excited for what we have in store for them. For their first day, we gave them a taste of public transportation by taking the MRT from Changi Airport Singapore all the way to Clarke Quay, which was a 45-minute ride + a 15-minute walk to the . . .
My First Japanese Stationery Haul—from Japan
As soon as we received our Japan visas, all I could dream about was bringing home beautiful, quality Japanese stationery. Some would even say it has a cult following—communities of enthusiasts gushing over the creamy pages, clean-cut bindings, and gorgeous inks. I fell head-over-heels in love when I first held the Apica CD notebook (A5) with grid paper. It had some of the smoothest paper any writer could behold. ? But try as I could, my budget and my suitcase wasn't big enough to bring back every Japanese notebook, paper, and pencils I could get my hands on, but I did choose items that were both in my wish list for some time and that I just had take off the shelf. More importantly, I made sure to choose stationery that were . . .
Journey to the Land of the Rising Sun: Universal Studios Japan
Jayson and I have made it our personal mission to take Noah to Universal Studios to see Jurassic Park in all its dino glory. ? We eventually managed to save up and book plane tickets to Singapore for this summer, but I was ecstatic when Universal Studios Japan made it to our Japan itinerary as well! Not only does Noah get to see all the dinosaurs at the park, but I'll be able to finally see the Wizarding World of Harry Potter for the first time—another dream come true for this Hufflepuff! ⚡ Day 2 of our trip was reserved solely for the theme park, and we got there around 9-ish to be able to make the most out of our stay. What we didn't expect was how intense the crowds were, and how the lines grew at such lengths and speeds in . . .
Journey to the Land of the Rising Sun: Kyoto
Patience is bitter, but the fruit is sweet.Artistotle The family and I are visiting Japan for the first time to celebrate the new year with my dad, his family, and my sisters. I've been looking forward to this trip since the beginning of the year that being here at this hotel desk at 5:30 in the morning truly sweetened the long and arduous wait. Though we've got our hands full with three boisterous children every minute of the day, I'm so glad we're all given this opportunity to experience what Japan has to share with the world. I've seen the torii gates in photos and anime, and have always been drawn to their serenity and history. Taking my own tranquil steps through the gates, and standing in front of the actual . . .
Cyrus’ first weekend in Manila
Growing up, I always looked forward to out-of-town trips with my parents, whether that's through the provinces of the Visayas or a plane ride to Manila. ✈️ Manila was especially exciting because it was a completely different environment when compared to the relaxed and laid back city of Bacolod, my hometown. The capital was filled with skyscrapers, big malls, beautiful shops, and swanky hotels with their delicious breakfast buffets. ? Eventually I moved to Manila for university, and its become a place embedded in my body and memory both for its wonders and its horrors. It's this ugly, heavy-breathing beast that you have to make your way through on tip-toe and with a knife in your backpack. Despite its dangers, I continue to love it . . .
Art Bar by Powerbooks Serendra
My daughter, Holly, loves making art. She's shown interest since she was a toddler and has improved over the years since the day she learned to hold a pencil. She's seven now and loves spending her free time making all kinds of colored sketches. I want to continue exposing her to what the art world has to offer, so I promised to bring her to the Art Bar once we visit Manila. ✈️ Located in Serendra, the Art Bar has pretty much everything an artist needs to do their best work. Canvases, easels, high-quality pencils, brush pens, and the like fill the glass shelves of this 2-storey shop. They carry art supplies and writing tools made in Germany, Japan, and the USA. They also host workshops for up-and-coming artists wanting to learn to . . .
GNZGA Goes to Cebu (Day 3)
Today's our last day here at Cebu, so Jayson and I decided to use it to shop for souvenirs and whatever the kids wanted to bring back home. ? The original plan was to visit the renowned Temple of Leah first thing after breakfast + the morning routines. But because of how crazy traffic was yesterday, I decided to skip and Instead head directly to SM Seaside City Cebu. Jayson's extended family's picking us up again and taking us there. No complaints here. Unfortunately I didn't take a lot of photos since our hands were full with the kids the whole time. But the mall certainly lives up to its name as the Philippines' 3rd largest mall. The entire building is circular where you'd walk in a full circle to see all the shops. There were . . .