Christmas musings

It was when I was watching television while waiting for something that I was doing (cant remember what it was no) that I heard the tv host say that it was only 8 days till Christmas. And then I suddenly thought to myself, what happens when we reach Christmas? What am I counting down to? 🤔

Maybe I am getting old that I am not sure what I am counting to since I dont go to my Ninangs and Ninongs anymore nor is there any traditional gathering or event we do on Christmas. I mean when December 25 comes, nothing really out of the ordinary happens. Because of that I was forced to think and it was when I was reminded of what Christmas is all about. 

Christ’s birth is being celebrated. It is a day or say a season full of love and hope because God has given us the gift of His Son because of His great love for us. Whatever people may call this season today to make it politically correct (which I perfectly understand), this holiday season was still rooted from the savior’s birth. 

And so after being reminded of such, I was able to appreciate more all the Christmas activities and intentionally made time to pause, celebrate, feel the magic of the season and just have peace in the midst of all that is happening in and around me.

Celebrating the season included (of course not limited to) eating my favorite ramen while thinking about Christmas and listening to chimes and Christmas songs, enjoying buying and making gifts for my friends, and binge watching on Christmas movies. 😁

There is nothing more magical than Christmas! Even the hardest of hearts can have a soft spot during this season. It is a time when anything can be possible! I think in a sense that’s what is called the magic of Christmas.

And so with all these thoughts, I counted. I counted with enthusiasm and I counted with expectancy. Nothing like having purpose and understanding (counting down)  in what one is doing. Lol. 


Music saves

I wondered why there are people who say that music saved them when they were at a low point in their lives.

I guess music helped me once but I totally forgot about it. And now I am beginning to understand what they meant when they said music saved them.

Music is a friend. A friend who knows you, knows how you feel. Music puts words into the feelings that you cannot even say. It expresses the things that only you and your soul know. Music can answer questions you have or assures you that all your questions are just normal. Music is the perfect best friend.

Home cooked food

Once you have made your own good version of meals, it’s just hard to eat the same from outside. You kind of think that what you can make at home tastes better and yet you pay more at the restaurants! 😁 

There is not a lot of food I can cook good but I could just imagine how the chefs may have felt. Yet also it increases your appetite to try out different tastes and types of food. Cooking makes one a better ‘eater’ I would say. 😉 

I had some time after work to cook and with the lack of someone who will cook good food (getting tired of mom’s hotdogs!), I went ahead and started cooking again. I cooked whatever mom bought. And they were a very good audience for my food! Lol

Here’s some I tried in the past days.

Tangy and savory chicken gizzard and liver adobo

Tortang talong and egg. I just fried the skin so as not to waste it. And we looove our eggplant skin.

Szechuan garlic spicy eggplant. (Not sure how the first word spells. Just typed what felt right. Lol.)

Pork patties and gravy

Tuna garlic tomato sauce and thin spaghetti. Yum!! Dont care about the carbs when eating pasta! 😋😋😋

Buttery garlicky refried shrimps

Chicken tinola with lemongrass and malunggay. Healthy and yummy. Perfect for the cold weather. Like a warm hug. 😍

Just a few things I have tried thanks to the internet and my tita. 😁 made from a few ingredients. Nothing like knowing what went into your food – no msg guaranteed! (Oops I used broth cubes on some so not sure then)

I Love cookin and I love seeing people happy and satisfied while eating. I just hope the dishes and pots and pans wash themselves automatically! Haha.

Alfredo’s steaks

The restaurant can already be considered a landmark at Tomas Morato. I grew up seeing it with its wooden frames and inviting veranda. It has not changed much ever since, which I think is a good thing, because externally, I dont think that it looked worse with time. I just see it as a constant reference to all the shops and restos that come and go in that busy street.

After all these years, I finally got to try Alfredo’s. Having a no reservations policy during a holiday, the field was kind of leveled in terms of chances in getting a table. And so the race begins.

We got there around almost 6pm and it was already packed with people. There was no queue and there were already people standing around. Good thing there was a waiter we were able to convince to create a queue and list our names and guest number. It was on a logbook page full of scribbles. Hmm not a very good sign.

There were still several vacant tables but nobody is making the effort to have people get seated there. If we could only fit on those spaces, I would have volunteered. Actually, I would have already sat there. It took about an hour before they start figuring things out. There was even a waiter who was turning people away. Very bad sign. 

Anyway, thankfully, I was sent a guardian angel waiter and he really tried to find a spot and reserved it for my group. There is still hope.

I ordered an appetizer right away and one of my group guest ordered for a drink while we try to figure out what to order for entree. Long story short, the appetizer did not arrive and the waiter even had a comment about not ordering completely the first time. We let it pass so as not to ruin the day. 

Anyway let’s talk about the food, since this is Alfredo’s steaks we had to try the steaks. They said the only difference between tenderloin and fillet mignon is the bacon on top. Their steaks are priced between Php 800 – 2000. It comes with gravy, vegetables, and half a boiled potato that you can mash on your own since it’s very soft. 🙂 I liked the potato, dont get me wrong.

The steak was soft and it was cooked the way I asked. Good job chef. 🙂 But it is not the kind of steak you eat without gravy hence, the gravy. Lol.

Good steak for me is something you can eat and enjoy without the need for any condiment or sauce. 

They had soup and salad with the steak. The soup was  mushroom soup that seems to have been watered down. It was edible and I finished it. The salad is like a worse version of a Wendy’s side salad. Let’s just say that is a bit personal as I am not a fan of thousand island dressing. ;p 

I liked their complimentary pandesal and butter. It was a hit. 🙂 It was hot and soft which really made it good and they weren’t cheap on the butter.

We ordered coffee for one of my group guest and again, it did not arrive. Queue was still very long during this time so I guess they are busy.

The ambience was nice with all the walls being glass and the guests seeing the lights outside the restaurant. They had a special gift for the ocassion, which was very much appreciated. A point for Alfredo’s. 🙂 

The food was ok but the service can be improved by a lot. Seems like the servers and waiters have become too familiar with the place and their work and no one seems to be keeping them on their toes and leading them (at least not that I saw). It is an old restaurant that is in a way has grown old in terms of service. Like a tired old grandparent, still loving and serving, but can only do so much due to frailty.

Celphone class 101

I live with senior citizens and the digital age has finally caught up with them. 😁 They have already recognized the need of having gadgets and the importance of being kept updated with technology. I guess we have social media to thank for closing the wide gap. 

Now the wide gap is very real. As real as the hours they need to practice before being able to check pictures and add their old friends and acquaintances in Facebook. Now computers and celphones with keyboards is one thing but a small touchscreen phone is another. 📱📲 They are haunted by apps ‘disappearing’ and suddenly getting inside folders. 😂 One has to have a lot of patience showing them how to answer phonecalls by ‘swiping to the right’. (Tip: teach them how about the speaker feature so that they can hear the calls better. 👍) Also, regular phone settings maintenance may be necessary as apps and settings can be changed as they press things on their phones. 

This our task now young people – to teach our old how to thrive in these technology-savvy times, and to help them enjoy the benefits of this age as they did their own time in their youth. We too will grow old. There will always be a new generation to come and new technology and innovations created more complicated for us to comprehend. We can only strive to welcome change and hope that the next generation does us the same favor of keeping us in the loop. 👴👵👶👦👧👨👩

A newbie entrepreneur

Early in life, I found it hard to mark-up goods. I felt it was a wrong thing to do, which made me sure at that time that I was not into business.

It went on for quite a while and only during the time that I went to business school did I gain a real interest in business. I loved the fact that one’s ideas can actually benefit people and give one income as well! I do like the saying that profit is kind of the validation of the goods and services provided. That was a paraphrased version by the way.

I realized I wanted to put up a business and dreamed of putting up a business for years. I talked about it and thought about it. I remember one speaker saying those who want to do business but do not know what business to get on to are not ready for business. If you are ready for business you will know it. And that kinda happened to me, but with the help of several people very close to me. Everything fell into place but not without risks and a lot of decision-making. I think this may not be for the faint of heart. But with dreaming and praying and careful planning, anything is possible. 🙂

This is just the first part of me and my partners’ journey in business (only less than 3 months in operation) and I can say that it is not easy. But I am enjoying it in many ways especially the things I learn about the world of business, about myself, about people, about family. I dont know, whatever happens to this business adventure, I just seem to know that everything is going to be alright. 🙂

My salute to those who have kept their businesses alive and profitable for years!

Crossfit or Crosseat

And so I did crossfit today after a long time of not having exercise. I don’t know if it was the effect of the new-year-new-everything spirit or the many pictures of my once thin self being thrown my way by my friends. 

I found the workout very challenging with my knees buckling with the many squats. Slight unevenness on the roads seem like great obstacles after the workout. It was a bit sad that I was not able to complete it but then again I just paced myself and resolved to get stronger with time.

I met my mom and ate afterwards at Shakey’s for dinner. My mom was very fixed on trying out the 2017 meal which would give a huge savings. Not sure if we really saved a lot because the 3 of us of course could not finish the meal for 8-10 pax!

I mean the combo was great – you get to choose your salad and pizza flavor. I think it’s a bang for the buck. There was a lot of food! We are crazy. Lol.

Makes me think that what I really did today was more of ‘crosseat’ and not crossfit.;p