Today, I receive all God’s love for me. Today, I open myself to the unbounded, limitless, overflowing abundance of God’s Universe. Today, I open myself to your Blessings, healing and miracles.Today, I open myself to God’s Word so that I become more like Jesus Everyday. Today, I proclaim that I’m God’s Beloved, I’m God’s Servant, I’m God’s powerful champion, And because I am blessed, I will bless the world, In Jesus Name, Amen.

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RUPTURED BRAIN ANEURYSM: Living with a Broken Brain

RUPTURED BRAIN ANEURYSM: Living with a Broken Brain. A unique insight into the fragility of the extraordinary human brain. A true st...

Thursday, September 12, 2013

RUSSIAN COOKIE HOUSE: Cookie Perfection


RUSSIAN COOKIE HOUSE: Cookie Perfection
Mini Bite-sized Pistachio Cookies in Small Canister
Absolutely divine! Rich, buttery, nutty, melt-in-your-mouth little morsels! These are awesome shortbread-type cookies that give a crushing sensation when you bite into them. 

These are the various gourmet cookies baked to perfection and beautifully packaged by Russian Cookie House.
Black Russian Cookie
I particularly like the taste and texture of the Black Russian Cookie which is a buttered cookie covered with bittersweet chocolate and topped with chocolate sprinkles. Inside this cookie are bits of crunchy walnut that compliment the taste of the chocolate and buttery cookie crust. 
Russian Cookie

The Russian Cookie is a snowball butter cookie dusted with powdered sugar. This has bits of walnut inside like the Black Russian Cookie. The cookie crust itself is crunchy and has a buttery and milky taste. Compared to the Black one, the Russian Cookie is less sweet and has a hint of salt. 
Black Almond Cookie

Black Almond Cookie is a chocolate-coated buttered cookie with toasted almond on top.
White Almond Cookie

On the other hand, the White Almond Cookie is a dark chocolate cookie dipped in white chocolate and topped with toasted almond.
Pistachio Cookie
Pistachio Cookie is a butter cookie topped with bittersweet chocolate and chopped pistachios.
Bite-sized cookie perfection!
Classic Gourmet Cookies in Brocade Print Gift Boxes European Selection (₱402.50)
Mini Bite-sized Cookies Small Canister (₱224.25 for 26Pcs-36Pcs of one kind per canister). I chose the Pistachio flavor.
Pistachio, Black Russian, Black Almond and Russian Cookies

I had mine sugar free. They are perfect with a cup of freshly brewed coffee, hot chocolate or tea. You would always want to have another round of these cookies.

They truly do melt in your mouth and, what I like most about them, they're not too sweet.

With the crazy weather and flood all over the metro in the past week, I felt blessed to be introduced to foodie.ph which has a very efficient online ordering system down to the delivery of the food I ordered.

If you are hungry and wants to have a quick fix, sign up now and order online via foodie.ph and yes, if you are living abroad and wants to surprise your family and friends with luscious Russian cookies, you could opt to sign up and pay online using your credit card.


Russian Cookie House - Makati Commissary
1692 Baler cor. Pililia St.
Makati City, MM


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Peñafrancia Festival 2013 Highlights


Peñafrancia Festival 2013 Highlights
Source: pbnbicol.com
This September, all roads lead to Naga City, declared as “Pilgrimage Capital” by virtue of Presidential Proclamation No. 33 of 2010 and colloquially known as “Queen City” of the Bicol region in the Philippines. 

Hordes of people composed of Marian pilgrims and tourists flock to this City to celebrate the Peñafrancia Festival which is centered on giving tribute to the Virgin Mary in the miraculous image called Nuestra Señora de Peñafrancia (Our Lady of Peñafrancia). 

Bicolanos, the locals of Bicol region, fondly refer to her as Inâ (mother).

Various activities are lined up for this year's festival, the highlights of which are as follows:
Source: Naga Smiles to the World FB

Traslacion

Traslacion, which falls on the second Friday of September, officially marks the first day of the Peñafrancia Festival. That day is also the feast of the Divino Rostro (Holy Face or the Image of the Divine Face of Jesus).

The Traslacion procession or Paghubò ki Inâ (transfer of our Mother) is the transfer of the miraculous image of Inâ and the Divino Rostro from the shrine at the Peñafrancia Basilica Minore to the Metropolitan Cathedral of Naga City where novena and holy masses will be held. This tradition began in 1885.
Picture of Divino Rostro taken by Jojo Prieto
During the procession, Inâ and the Divino Rostro, on their respective dome-shaped andas (carriage), will be carried by barefooted voyadores up to the Metropolitan Cathedral. Some devotees will usually try to climb the andas to touch the images. Others will throw their handkerchiefs or small face towels to the devotees or priests on board the andas to be wiped on the images or on the surface of the dome-shaped andas. The handkerchiefs will then be returned to the devotees by throwing them back in their direction. The devotees believe that by touching the images or having their handkerchiefs touch the images or their andas, they will be cured of their ailment or the same will bring them good luck or good fortune.

"Voyadores" is an altered form of the Spanish word vogadores, which means seafarers. Loosely, "voya" means "to transport something to another place." So, the "voyadores" transport something to another place. In this case, they transport Inâ and the Divino Rostro.

Throng of devotees follow the images while waving their handkerchiefs and shouting "Viva" or "Viva la Virgen" or "Viva la Virgen de Peñafrancia" or "Viva el Divino Rostro." 
Ladawan:Andas ni Ina 003.jpg
Picture of the Palanquin or Andas taken by Ringer
More than a decade ago, the andas used to carry the images are made of wood and do not have wheels. They are carried on the shoulders of the voyadores during the processions. Later, they were replaced with andas made of steel and which have wheels. In 2009, larger and higher andas replaced the old ones. As shown in the above picture, the wheels used in the new andas are those being used in airplanes.

Fluvial Procession 

On the 9th day of the Novena which will fall on the 3rd Saturday of September, Inâ and the Divino Rostro will be returned to the Peñafrancia shrine in Basilica Minore through the Naga City river route. 

The voyadores will carry the images on their respective dome-shaped andas from the Metropolitan Cathedral up to the river bank near the city public market. 

During the procession on foot, devotees usually try to get near the images or throw their hankerchiefs or small face towels to the devotees or priests on board the andas to be wiped on the images or on the surface of the dome-shaped andas.

Throng of devotees follow the images while waving their handkerchiefs and shouting "Viva" or "Viva la Virgen" or "Viva la Virgen de Peñafrancia" or "Viva el Divino Rostro." 
 Picture of Inâ taken by Rafael F. Matubis 
From the river bank, the images will be transferred to a huge pagoda/ barge that will be pulled by long bancas (boats) manually paddled by the boatmen/ devotees in colorful shirts up to the bank of the river near the Basilica Minore. Along the banks of the river, devotees with lighted candles wave their handkerchiefs as the barge/ pagoda passes by.
Picture of the actual fluvial procession in NAGA CITY taken by Atty. Rene Dela Cruz
Upon arrival at the Basilica, the images will be received in formal religious rites by Roman Catholic dignitaries.  

Viva la Virgen de Peñafrancia!

Viva el Divino Rostro!




MILEY CYRUS: In Her Birthday Suit For Her Latest Video


MILEY CYRUS: In Her Birthday Suit For Her Latest Video 
If you think that Miley Cyrus is done shedding her innocent public image by her vulgar VMA performance last month, you are so wrong. It turns out to be just an ice breaker.

Miley Cyrus, in her latest music video entitled “Wrecking Ball,” went totally naked. Yes, butt naked.
.. 

In the music video, Miley is seen crying and swinging around nude in an erotic ode to lost love, complete with nude shots and sensual licking of a sledgehammer. (see video at the bottom of my post.)

I just don't get it. Where did the sweet, angelic, girl next door image of Miley Cyrus went? I hate the new Miley Cyrus now. Miley Cyrus sexual innuendo in the video leaves a bad taste in the mouth.
The Miley Cyrus in this music video is the 360-degree version of the Miley Cyrus I used to idolized.

In “Wrecking Ball,” Cyrus sings about trying to break down her lover’s walls and, in return, being broken down herself.

I came in like a wrecking ball

I never hit so hard in love

All I wanted was to break your walls

All you ever did was wreck me

It’s pretty deep, eh? It was made all the deeper by the video in which she makes out with a sledgehammer, rides the wrecking ball as it destroys the walls of a structure/relationship and then she walks around on the rubble of demolished the structure/relationship.



Since Miley Cyrus Video was uploaded less than 24 hours ago, it garnered more than 20 million page views on You Tube.

Warning: This video is not for kids.


Sunday, September 8, 2013

COHEN DIET: Changes Lives


COHEN DIET: Changes Lives
I finally got to know what the real Cohen Diet is all about when I attended a recent event about it.

A lot of people, including myself, had this notion that Cohen Diet is a very expensive diet. That is a big fat lie. Why? Because it turned out that the program would only cost you Php60,000. A really small amount to pay in order to have a life changing, healthy way of living.

Mind you, it is not money alone that could get you to the Cohen Program. Many people tried but failed because they did not pass the medical test in order to be on the Cohen Diet Program. Yes, folks Cohen is not applicable to everybody. 

I learned during the event that the Cohen Diet Program is a personalized eating plan that results in a fast loss of weight. With Cohen, they teach you how to make your food for it to become your medicine. 

PERSONALIZED. This means that the diet plan made for Juan is NOT the same for PEDRO.

I must warn you about those enterprising individuals who market their set menu food as "good for weight loss." I am really sad that they 
do not take into consideration the negative effects of giving the same menu to all their clients and falsely selling their food as COHEN. Please, oh please, don't make Pedro sick by giving him Juan's food program.

If Juan is 400 pounds and Pedro is 190 pounds. It is not only the blood type that distinguishes their food plans. Their weight, height, age and a lot of other things must also be taken into consideration

Yes, I know. It sucks big time that not everyone can take the Cohen diet.

Persons with the following health issues don't qualify:
  • Liver problem
  • Kidney problem
  • Heart problems such as but not limited to palpitation
  • Diabetes
The doctor told us that when you are in the Cohen program you should cook your own food. Yes, it is not advisable to just let those so called enterprising individuals to deliver your food. Don't buy diet food. Cook it yourself after you qualify for the Cohen Diet Program.

Forget about all those fad diets. Cohen Diet changes one's lifestyle and gives hope to people who felt hopeless all their pathetic lives. 

The statements uttered by the five successful graduates of the Cohen programs are words of wisdom that we should take into consideration.

Up until now, the words uttered by Francis, the biggest loser ( weight loser, that is) was still ringing in my ear. He said:
"I already accepted the fact that I was fat, I was born Fat, and would die Fat."
He further related that he's also resigned to the fact that he had to paid two slots in public transportation for the rest of his life. He grew up being ridiculed because of his weight problem and was shocked when his mom enrolled him in the program and was even thinking of cheating on the program because he doesn't believe that he can still attain his ideal weight. In fact, it was his sister who originally took interest in the program. Unfortunately, she has palpitation, thus not qualified to be on the program. But look at Francis now!

              
                                             BEFORE                                                          AFTER
Francis shared that the weight he lost is equivalent to one person. A whooping 158 lbs. He conquered his own self! Congratulations Francis! 
Of course, I asked Francis about the negative effects he experienced with his rapid weight loss. He said that basically he became anti-social because he'd rather stay home with his family than go out plus a lot of people including his office mates thought he was on drugs because of all the weight he shed. He said he also became cranky. As for his health, he said that at the onset of the program, he could not exercise but eventually he was able to exercise to maintain the new version of himself. Francis is very thankful that he got into the Cohen program that gives him his new found confidence.  


Saturday, September 7, 2013

PMAP: 50th Annual Conference


PMAP: 50th Annual Conference
The People Management Association of the Philippines (PMAP), the premier organization of HR practitioners and people managers in the Philippines today, will hold its 50th Annual Conference at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) from September 25-27, 2013. 
I am grateful to have been invited to cover the Speakers Briefing of the 50th PMAP Annual Conference that happened last September 4, 2013 at the Samar Room of Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila, Pasay City.
With the theme “Global Opportunities. Leaping. Forward. Defying Limits,” this year’s conference will update people managers and HR practitioners on the latest trends and practices in human resource management and employee relations. With fifty years of thought leadership, advocacy and camaraderie, the PMAP conference will reach another milestone as it moves towards its quest for gold. 
The conference will also recognize the challenge that the Philippines is at the center of Global Opportunities. But more than recognizing that reality, people should see it as a mandate. There’s no other way but to seize these possibilities. Filipinos are now at the brink of living their dreams and imaginings. There are no excuses. This time, we have to make it work! 
The horizon has opened up and all eyes are on the Philippines as the world’s new economic tiger. The opportunities are within reach and the challenge is to leap forward. We can no longer afford to move at our current pace. Catch-up, leapfrog… that is what we should do. But to realize this, we need to defy limits, break free from our self-imposed restrictions that used to define who we are and what we can do. 
The global economic landscape is seeing a new dawn, with Asia as its center and the Philippines, its sweet spot. The turnaround could not have come at a more opportune time. A young Filipino workforce is raring to go and governance is breaking through a renaissance of accountability and transparency. The message is unequivocal: We are open for business! It’s all systems go.

PMAP has gathered some of the best minds here and abroad to share their knowledge and expertise in this historic event. Senator Juan Edgardo Angara will be the opening keynote speaker who will talk about the Philippines as an untapped gold mine while the closing keynote speech will be delivered by no less than Senate President Franklin Drilon. 

The lineup of speakers and resource persons is staggering. Plenary presenters include 
  • Monica Wofford, CSP, the CEO of Contagious Companies, Inc.
  • Ravin Jesuthasan, Global Practice Leader, Talent Management and Managing Director of Towers Watson
  • Prabhakar Bisen, Global Insurance BPO Head and Country Head in the Philippines of Cognizant Technology Solutions
  • Mario Silos, Chairman and President, Asalus Corporation/Intellicare
  • Education Secretary Bro. Armin Luistro, FSC (invited)
  • Bill Luz (invited), Chairman, Private Sector, National Competitiveness Council
  • SEIPI President Dan Lachica
  • Atty. Hector Hernandez of the University of Asia and the Pacific
  • Ramon Segismundo, SVP-Meralco
  • Brian Quebengco, Professor, Enderun Colleges
  • Atty. Josephus Jimenez, FPM, former DOLE Undersecretary
  • with Attys. Eliseo Zuniga, Jr.
  • Randall Tabayoyong
  • Noel Balsicas
  • Carlos Celdran, Filipino tour guide, cultural activist, and performing artist, and a host of other luminaries. 
The program is beefed up by PMAP Past President Bong Austero, Luigi Mapa, Gerry Plana, PMAP Director Bong Tamayao, Nic Lim, SVP-JG Summit Holdings, Ging Igual, Angie Atanacio, PMAP Director Penny Bongato, Teny Menorca, PMAP PMY Awardee, Ma. Regina Alampay, Gigi Geronimo, Roby Alampay, Gerry Cariaso, Ma. Cecilia Ampeloquio, Dinah Loomis, Lirio Mapa, Duncan Howorth, Mary Grace Colet, Astik Ranade (Asia Pacific Head and Principal, Mercer), Grace Decena, Federico Marquez, DPM, Edgardo Carasig, Atty. Sonny Matula, DOLE USec Rebecca Chato (invited), Gerardo Ungson (San Francisco State University), Nestor Rañeses of UPISSI, Maria Teresa Galura, Jun Cabochan, CSC Chairman Francisco Duque, PMAP IPP Turok Florentin, Laurent Lamasuta, PMAP PP Grace Zata, and a few others who still have to confirm their participation.

As we usher in this golden year of the PMAP Annual Conference, we take stock of the rich mine of ideas in our sharing and learning community. Fifty years of thought leadership, advocacy and camaraderie. A story that in this milestone year turns into our quest for GOLD.

To register, please call PMAP at tel. no. 726-1532 or email pmap@pmap.org.ph. You may also visit www.pmap.org.ph for more details.


Friday, September 6, 2013

Thunderbird Resorts-Rizal: Weekend Day Tour


Thunderbird Resorts-Rizal: Weekend Day Tour
This is the very first time that I ever set foot at Thunderbird Resorts-Rizal and I was awed. Yes, admittedly I saw old infrastructure and facilities but they were well-kept. The place has great ambiance and great views.
Thunderbird Resorts-Rizal is tucked in a hilly terrain and lies between the foothills of Sierra Madre Mountain and the northeastern part of Laguna de Bay.
One could find solace in its breathtaking mountain scenery. The wind was cool when we stepped out of the bus, making me appreciate nature even more.
I will give a satisfactory rate for the food and efficient staff. It is a recommendable resort for an unplanned family weekend getaway, barkada trips, couples getaway and for individuals who just want to have their own "me" time away from the hustle and bustle of the city.
By the way, we were there for a bloggers day-tour event. 
Upon entering the building, we were served with welcome drinks including some cocktails. Then, they asked us to register our gadgets. Afterwards, they led us to the event center where we were treated to a day of fun games. 

Thunderbird Resorts-Rizal is best known for providing excitement and entertainment altogether in its top-of-the-line gaming facilities at its themed Fiesta Casinos and the variety of social functions and gatherings held at its Event Center.


We did not eat at Koi Restaurant but we were able to sample some of its dishes at the event center so it is safe to say that the food is okay.


Swimming pool

Rooms

Their rooms are quite big compared to some hotels in Manila. The rooms they showed us have 2 double sized beds. Sorry, we did not stay there so all I could share with you is their room rates. Room rates at Rizal Thunderbird Resorts for Superior and Deluxe are at Php7,000 and Php7,500 on weekdays and weekends, respectively. Each room allows four guests.

Day tour

Day tour is hp1,400/ person, Php1,000 of that goes to the food and drinks. Fair enough for day-tours, they provide clean shower rooms, pool chairs and you may use the covered dining area if it rains. Also, if there are more than 12 day-trippers in a group, the hotel provides a room where they could lounge around and put their bags and other stuff.  I think this is considered as good service. Cool right?

Apart for the extraordinary, luxurious and tranquil experience the resort-hotel-casino facility accord its guests, you could also swim or play golf or play at the casino. However, if the guests are into golf, casino, resting-mode, the big rooms are sure worth the price for an overnight stay. 

The distance between Manila and Binangonan, Rizal is perfect for those who want to do a short R and R!

The hustle and bustle of city life is mostly what people would like to escape from for a weekend getaway, which Rizal Thunderbird Resorts can offer in its perfect paradise-like getaway ambiance and facilities.

Since July till September, it offers ‘no more lonely nights’ for family and friends’ bonding via its ‘Bed, Breakfast & More’ promo. For just Php4,333 NET—enjoy an overnight accommodation in a Deluxe room with free breakfast for two.

Another exciting offer is its ‘Triple Treat, Week Starter’ promo is the best R&R, an all-inclusive dining and spa experience for Php8,100* per night (applicable only on Sundays till Tuesdays) and will run until December 15, 2013 (not including the Holidays).

But for six guests, ‘A Villa Experience’ Promo is one with a laid back ambiance in the privacy of a villa is a recommended accommodation. For a whopping rate of Php18,888 is roughly Php3,150 per head. The promo will run until December 22, 2013.

It has been the venue for the popular afternoon telenovela ‘Please be Careful with My Heart’ for one of its party scenes. 



For more details about Rizal Thunderbird Resorts, visit its official website on thunderbird-asia.com.


Sunday, September 1, 2013

CRISTINE REYES POSTED ON INSTAGRAM AND TWITTER THE VIDEO OF DEREK RAMSAY HALF-NAKED


CRISTINE REYES POSTED ON INSTAGRAM AND TWITTER THE VIDEO OF DEREK RAMSAY HALF-NAKED
Oh, la la! Derek Ramsay is sizzling hot in these caps! He looks so happy!

A few days ago, Cristine Reyes posted an intriguing status on her Facebook page that she also tweeted and posted on instagram.

“Not just your girl…I am your everything…Eight. Twenty Eight. Twenty Thirteen,” went the post of Cristine.

Apparently, August 28, 2013 represents the day when actor Derek Ramsay and actress Cristine Reyes officially became a couple. The post drew more than 60,000 likes, 492 shares and over 1,000 comments.

One day later, the new man in her life, TV5 prized actor Derek Ramsay, confirmed to his own Twitter followers that he and Cristine are now officially a couple, thus, ending several months of speculations that the two are secretly dating.

In a recent Twitter post, Derek was asked by one of his followers to react on news that he is in a relationship with the actress when he had said in the past that he will never date someone from show biz.

Derek replied: "I did say that I'll never date someone from show biz and that I'd never date Cristine coz she is a friend. I eat my words."

Cristine confirmed that she had already met Derek's parents.

Cristine also did not deny that they went out together for lunch and dinner dates and the actor even invited him to play golf. She said Derek told her everything, including the controversies that were linked to him.

When asked what she likes best about Derek, Cristine replied: "Pareho kaming baliw, pareho kaming outgoing. Family man (siya) and yun ang pinaka gusto ko sa kanya."

Rumors of Derek and Cristine dating started January this year when they were spotted in Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club in Nasugbu, Batangas.

The two are currently working opposite each other in Viva Films' "My Trophy Wife." Derek recently posted about “one of the wildest bed scenes” for the film, although he did not mention whether it was Cristine or other co-star Heart Evangelista he was doing the scene with.
Cristine tweeted a video of Derek that she had apparently taken with her mobile phone. Cristine's voice can be heard from the background, the video shows a half-naked Derek clowning around during what appears to be a break from the shoot. He looks so happy.


                               

Congrats Cristine! Please don't break Derek's heart.


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