Tag Archives: weekends

Road Trip : Pinto Art Gallery

While many people were off to their various destinations for this 3-day weekend, my familia ended up having a forced staycation due to pre-bought Wicked tickets.

Anyhoo, despite my initial wistfulness over not being able to spend the holiday out of town, I eventually just decided to make the most out of my family’s time in the city by exploring a new place that we’ve always been wanting to visit, but never get to.  For our first road trip of the year, we settled on trekking to Antipolo for a long overdue tour of Pinto Art Gallery.  Let me warn you in advance that this post will be quite picture heavy.  Hahaha!  As expected, the gallery grounds and the art were so beautiful (spoiler alert!), that I couldn’t resist clicking away on my iPhone. 🙂

Despite getting lost several times due to misguided directions from our GPS app, we finally reached Pinto after about an hour’s drive from Taguig.  It’s actually easier to just follow the map from their website.  Hahaha!  If we did so, it probably would’ve taken us only 30 minutes as traffic was quite light that day (another perk of staying in the city during a long holiday :)).

To get into the gallery, there is an entrance fee of Php150.  This entrance fee gives you access to all 5 galleries, as well as to the upper and lower gardens.

Here is what we saw at Pinto:

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Art sculptures and installations all over the place…

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A charming and rustic chapel with many antique pieces I would love to have in my own home!

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More sculptures and art in the garden…

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These were kinda freaky and had a “My Precious” kinda vibe to them, but it was also quite visually interesting especially the way there were displayed against the foliage.

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The architecture kind of reminded me of the structures you’d see in Texas or New Mexico (think: The Alamo).  I love the use of stark white, especially against the vibrant art work :).  According to Pinto’s website, the buildings were designed by Antonio Leano.

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We found this plaque right outside the entrance of Gallery 1.  Love the quote from Dr. Cuanang–the owner of Pinto–when he said, “This museum is dedicated to their art, to their dreams and to the times we live.”  Well said!  Did I mention that Pinto is purely a museum of contemporary Filipino art?  No masters here. Instead, as its name implies, it is an open venue for all kinds of modern art practice.  You’ll find a lot of new and up and comers here in the fields of painting, sculpture, and mixed media.

Personally, I think it is truly wonderful how places like these encourage more Filipino artists to create, by providing them a wonderful space to showcase their work.  I also think it makes art more accessible to everyone, less serious or for the “intellectual”, and definitely more fun!

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Here’s what we saw in Gallery 1…

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I found the pieces to be quite dark and dreary–not my style at all.  Hahaha!  I appreciated Gallery 2 more as it was filled with art from some of my favorite contemporary artists–Elmer Borlongan, Plet Bolipata, and Rodel Tapaya.

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The notorious Hari Sonik was on display in Gallery 2.  I find this character so intriguing, yet disturbing at the same time.  The H just finds him flat out freaky. Hahahaha!

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I was so drawn to this Borlongan painting.  Definitely not as “dark” as his others.

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There’s also a very cute cafe inside Pinto.  Too bad it was closed that day we were there.  I read somewhere that the cafe is operated by Bizu during the weekends. I’m not too sure if that is still true, though :).

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Going down the steps from the Pinto Cafe will lead you to Gallery 3.  Again, there were more interesting artworks to see…

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Can you believe these 2 different artworks were done by 1 artist? 🙂  Loving the reference to the jeepneys of old :).

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This was one of my favorite pieces…

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And now to the best part–Galleries 4 and 5.  These two spaces had the most interesting pieces, and the nicest displays–truly, a visual feast! 🙂

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Haha.

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A very timely “year of the horse” sculpture by Plet Bolipata.  I think there were 4 of her sculptures throughout the gallery!  I loooove her art!  Incidentally, Plet is Elmer Borlongan’s wife :).

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By Leeroy New, another artist that I admire very much :).

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Sweet ride :).  Even the little one thought so :).

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Before we get to Gallery 5, I would literally like to take a bathroom break.  Yes, I did take pictures of their bathrooms, but only because they were so pretty, and so clean!  Did I not tell you that there were just too many beautiful spaces in this place?!?  This bathroom is proof!  Hahahaha!  And that turquoise door…Haaaay! Soooo loving it! 🙂

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On to Gallery 5…

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I was particularly drawn to these paintings by Emanuel Garibay too.  Not like his usual paintings, these are very bright and colorful.  I like the subject matter as well, especially the ones with the women in it :).

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Throughout the gallery, you will find arched windows or doorways that open to spectacular views such as this one.

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“Sit at your own risk.”  A living room made entirely out of paper!

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There were also these 2 rooms we found at the last gallery–one looked like a bedroom, the other a den-slash-living room.  It made me wonder if they were meant to be used for gallery guests, or were they simply a space to display artwork as well?  Both rooms were very pretty :).

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What else is pretty at Pinto?  The view, ofcourse 🙂

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There are several rooftops in Pinto that give one a gorgeous view of the city. Definitely picture-worthy! And it was with this particular view that we ended our tour of the wonderful Pinto Art Gallery.  Like I said, no regrets that we ended up spending our holiday in the city, as we were finally able to visit this gem of a place :)!

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The Weekend That Was : Balik Bukid 4

Just wanted to share images from our wonderful Balik Bukid experience!  We spent almost the entire day at the fair, and had a blast!

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Ofcourse no trip to Balik Bukid would be complete without feeding the guinea pigs…

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…or saying “hello” to the baby pot-bellied pig!

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We ate the most delicious food…

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This brick oven truffle mushroom and cheese pizza was TDF!  And doesn’t it look too pretty to eat too? 🙂

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This ginger ale from Stanford & Shaw Brewing Co. was soooooo cold and refreshing–perfect for a day in the bukid!

There was also some shopping for the ladies, with several of my favorite sellers representing! 🙂

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Here is Anna, manning the La Pomme booth.  Don’t you just love her Pepita Doll? It’s 100% handmade with love by her!  Ofcourse I could not resist buying one for myself!  Yes, you read that right–it’s for me!  Hahahaha!

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Soft Haven makes the most wonderful baby blankets and matching plush toys. They’re also regulars at the American Women’s Bazaar :).

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Mary Velmonte and her takas from Takatak Project were also at the fair!  She brought along her new products too!  Notice that bear made out of craft board? That’s meant to be a wall hanging!  Cool, right?

Balik Bukid was truly a wonderful way to spend the weekend!  And I was happy to see how many families thought so too!  Even my family who were first-timers at the fair agreed that it was such a fun way to bond :)!  And for once, the kids did not even look for nor ask for their gadgets!  Instead, they were running around, playing with animals, taking carabao rides, and trying out the zipline!

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This was the last Balik Bukid for this year, but you should definitely try and catch the next one!  I promise, you’ll have a blast!

Dine For A Cause : #YolandaActionWeekend #ReliefPH

If you’re thinking of dining out this weekend, why not try one of the establishments listed below.  These generous food purveyors have pledged a portion of their proceeds this weekend to relief efforts of The Philippine Red Cross.  It’s a simple way of showing your support for the victims of Supertyphoon Yolanda, as well as your solidarity with the rest of the country, as together, we work to help rebuild afflicted areas in the Visayas region.

yolanda

A Scribble Workshop with Ink Scribbler

Ever since I was little, I’ve always been drawn to calligraphy.

I first learned about it from my cousin in the US who had his own set of calligraphy pens–a Schaeffer with 3 nibs and attachable ink.  He used it to create such beautiful handwriting in his journal.  Or sometimes he’d use it to write letters to his mom, or to our grandparents.  The envelopes would sometimes be addressed in calligraphy as well.  I remember being so entranced by the writing, by seeing how it could be transformed into one that flowed and curled and flourished…*sigh* quite romantic, if you think about it :).  I knew I just had to get my own set of calligraphy pens, and learn this craft.

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Photo from eBay

That summer, I ended up buying exactly the same set as my cousin’s :).  Haha! I remember how excited I was to open the box, and to put my new pen to use :).  I recall studying the little booklet it came with intently, trying to remember the way to hold my pen, angle the nib, and the steps on how to do the various letters of the alphabet.  And the first time I put my pen to paper and saw the flowy colored ink strokes –it was like magic!  Am I sounding just a bit geeky right now? Hahaha!  I kid you not, calligraphy really does this to me–it makes me feel warm and fuzzy and all kinds of excited!  Hahaha!

I was so excited that I used to practice really often until I got pretty good at it.  I’m not talking expert levels here, but good enough that my calligraphy almost looked like the one in the Schaeffer instruction book already!  Hahaha!  Again, my disclaimer is that it was actually a very simple font–without the flourishes–so it was easy naman to master :).  And I’ve always had pretty nice handwriting so that also made it easier for me :).  But anyway,  I got pretty good at doing calligraphy that even at a young age, my parents would already ask me to do the calligraphy for their party invitations! 🙂  I would also get requests from relatives to write names on gift tags, in books, to make signages, etc. etc.  If only I had seen the commercial value of my skill then.  Hahaha! ;p

From my Schaeffer set I graduated to a Speedball.  At that time, I thought I was pretty hardcore already.  Haha!  Not only did the set come with so many different types of nibs, but the ink was bottled–as in you had to dip your nib into it.  Quite different from the the Schaeffer nibs I was used to wherein you had to attach the ink to the nib.  These Speedballs had such an “old school” vibe to it.  Hahaha!   All it needed was a plume attached to the end of the pen! 🙂  Everytime I used it, I always felt like such an expert 🙂  Even the booklet it came with had ten times the amount of fonts than the Schaeffer book.  And these were not just your simple Chancery fonts.  These were the really complicated ones–like the type you’d see on diplomas or really old certificates :).

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Photos from eBay

It’s too bad that I never really pursued calligraphy as I got older.  Life and other interests somehow got in the way.  But I never lost the skill as I would still get requests once in a while to hand write on invitations (I did my own calligraphy for my wedding :)).  I  guess I just didn’t practice as much as I needed to.  Calligraphy  is the type of craft that really needs a lot of disciplined practice.  I guess it has something to do with training your hand, and familiarizing it with the various strokes and flourishes :).

It is so nice to see calligraphy making a comeback nowadays, and in a big way too! In fact, for such an old craft, it seems to be having its revival amongst the younger set, which is a pleasant surprise for me, given the tech-y age that we are in :).

Last week, I actually attended a Scribble Workshop, hosted by Ms. Ink Scribbler herself, Alexis Ventura.  Formerly a brand manager at L’Oreal, she quit her job to do calligraphy full time!  *Sigh*.  Don’t I wish.  Hahaha!

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The workshop was held in a photography studio on the 5th floor of the Vasquez Madrigal Building on Annapolis Street.  Since I got to the venue early (I was the first), I got to chat with Alexis a bit, ask her some questions, and look at her collection of nibs, before the other participants started trickling in :).

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My intention for joining the workshop was really to learn the basics of calligraphy, especially the free-hand style–my biggest frustration.  Because I’d been used to doing a very “structured” font, and am very OC about my loops and curls, free-hand has always been a struggle for me.

Here were our “tools” for the day…

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We started off with some rules, some basics, and practice sheets…

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…then at the end of the workshop, we were asked to write out our own favorite quotes!

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I still have a lot of practicing to do, but I’m pretty happy with the results! 🙂

To be honest, I didn’t realize how difficult it was to do calligraphy with an actual, proper nib–writing with my Schaeffer one is a piece of cake compared to this!  And my past experience didn’t prepare me at all for this workshop–I practically had to “unlearn” everything I taught myself before!

It was challenging, but a LOT of fun, though :).  And despite the hand and finger cramping, I felt so relaxed and “lost in my own world” that afternoon.  Definitely, this was a weekend afternoon that was well spent :).  I only felt the teensiest bit guilty not spending it with the H and the little one :).  Hahaha!

For those of you who want to learn or are interested in calligraphy, I highly recommend this beginner’s workshop :).  Not only was it a lot of fun and personally fulfilling for me, but it was nice to meet other calligraphy enthusiasts as well :).  Alexis is also very engaging, friendly, and patient in teaching her “students”.

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To know more about the Scribble Workshop, follow Alexis on Instagram at @inkscribbler, like her on FB at facebook.com/inkscribbler, or go to her website, http://www.inkscribbler.com, for schedules and details :).

Starting Traditions

As I’m writing this post, I smile to myself thinking that my family spent this year’s August holiday pretty much the same way we did last year–a trip to Hong Kong, and a trip to Fun Farm with our close friends.

True to form, it even rained in Fun Farm just like it did a year ago!

Hahaha!

Is this the start of some new traditions for Familia C?

Anyway, sharing with you some pictures from our fun but slightly wet day.

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A and the Carabao

This time around, I got to ride on ChocNut the Carabao, and we went on a tour of the farm.

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As usual, A got to feed the rabbits and the guinea pigs…

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…with a little help from her friends :).

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She went fishing too (no luck, as usual :)).

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Horseback riding with Dada is always a treat :).

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And when it rains, the covered sandbox is always a welcome refuge :).

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If you haven’t made your way to the Fun Farm, you should definitely go!  It is a wonderful place for families to spend a lazy weekend :).

And who knows, you may even start your own tradition! 🙂

Cronuts

So while the bulilits were having fun at KidzVille, the grown ups decided to crash at Wildflour and have some cronuts!

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Finally, I got to taste what all the hype is about!

To be honest, I actually enjoyed it more than I thought I would :).  I’m not really a fan of croissants, so I was never really interested to try out or line up for this particular hybrid. But since the SIL ordered a couple, I eagerly dug in, and was pleasantly surprised to discover that it was yummier than I expected :).

Knowing that it is supposed to be a cross between a croissant and a doughnut, I was a bit thrown off that the cronut was chewy, rather than light and flaky.  But that’s a good thing :). Although I prefer my pastries to be more dense, soft and moist, I was actually relieved with the cronut’s consistency because I actually dislike the flakiness of croissants.  It doesn’t give me much to sink my teeth into. Hahaha!  It can also get a bit messy, which is usually a turn off for me.  So I’m glad that despite its flaky layers, the cronut was dense enough to give me the feeling that I was actually biting into something more than air :).  Plus points! 🙂

Another thing I liked about the cronut was that is was also not that sweet, considering the amount of sugar and glaze it came with! Hahaha!  The cream inside helped to balance the sweetness, and provided a different texture as well. Again, while I’m not a fan of bavarian cream doughnuts, the cream in the cronuts, I thought, was well incorporated, and enhanced its taste, and the overall experience :).

But even after all the pluses I mentioned above, and after trying out different flavors (chocolate, dulce de leche, berry, and I forgot the other one), I still think I prefer a good old fashioned donut to a cronut any day.  I’m loving the innovation, though, and I wonder what the next one will be :).  A declair (donut + eclair)? A crupcake (croissant + cupcake)?  The possibilities are endless!  Hahaha!

Actually, while I enjoyed having the cronut for merienda, I think I enjoyed the ambience and decor of Wildflour Podium even more!  Hahaha!  Despite the tight space, I loved the design elements and its overall look :).  Special mention goes to the machucca tiles by the register area.  Soooo pretty, that I just had to take a requisite foot photo :).

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Have a happy hump day, everyone! 🙂

WILDFLOUR CAFE + BAKERY is located at the Ground Floor of The Podium Mall, Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong, Metro Manila.  Telephone Number :  +632 571 8588

Saturday Seafood Sandwich Special

Spent Saturday morning at another Manila Pop-Up :).

Seafood Sandwiches were on the menu for the day, the concept intended to be similar to that of a lobster shack experience.

This time, I got my cousin Barbie to join me cuz the hubby doesn’t really eat sandwiches.  In fact, his little quirk is that he doesn’t eat bread, especially the sandwich variety.  Pizzas and doughnuts are okay, but pandesal, loaf bread, burger buns and the like, are no-no’s.  Weird, right?  Hahaha!

But he came along for the ride, anyway, and we brought the little miss with us too 🙂

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We got to the location, Burger Project along Jupiter Street, quite early. Because we were early, we decided to have some appetizers at sister restaurant next door, Pino.

Big mistake.

Ten minutes to opening time, we strolled to Burger Project and found a big crowd of people, already waiting in line!  ACK!!!

When our number was handed out to us, we were 94 and 95!!! Argh, can you imagine the frustration?

But to make a long story short–I won’t bore you with details of our wait–some angels came to our rescue and offered us their numbers–38, 39 and 40.  Huge jump, right?  We were inside Burger Project pretty much by 1230, just in time for lunch 🙂  Thank you so much, J and friends!

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On to the food :).  We ordered 3 sandwiches.  In hindsight, we should have ordered all 5 offerings, but at that time we felt it was a bit much for two small tummies.  Hahaha!  But now I am haunted by this decision cuz the lobster grilled cheese and soft shell crab burger sound mighty yummy.  Sigh 😦

Anyway, upon Erwan Heussaff’s recommendation, we got the Tempura Oyster Po Boy–a mixture of oysters, uni cream, kimchi, cabbage and cayenne, artfully arranged on a hot dog bun.  We also decided on the Popcorn Shrimp and Bagnet–aligue coconut cream, spring onions, chili, parsley and lettuce on ciabatta bread, and the Lobster Roll–lobster, shrimps, japanese mayo, celery leaves, tomatoes and scallions, all jumbled up in a brioche roll.

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In a word, the sandwiches were epic!  We loooooooved all of them!  Personally, I especially loved the Tempura Oyster Po Boy.  The oysters were so fat and fresh :).  But cousin B and I agreed everything was a winner!  The mixture of flavors were just right, and they sure didn’t skimp on the seafood :).   Yummy, happy tummies! Yay!

I love how the Manila Pop Up group keeps on coming up with new, wonderful dining concepts like these 🙂  I only wish it could have been a real shack experience with outdoor picnic tables, a food truck, and maybe even some seafood chowder to go with the sandwiches :).  Nevertheless, B and I had a great time, minus the wait 🙂

Definitely looking forward to the next pop up! 🙂

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Okay, B, here’s your picture with E, as promised 🙂 

I am “following the bulb”.  Are you?  To know more about Manila Pop Up, follow them on FaceBook (facebook.com/manilapopup), Twitter (twitter.com/manilapopup) and Instagram (mnlpopup)

Sunday Happy : Bonding Over Bookplates

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There are 3 things I loved about this activity :

1. The design of the bookplates are just too pretty!  I got mine from here.

2. Stamping the little girl’s name was so much fun!  She almost did it independently!  Proud mommy moment 🙂

3. I got to spend precious crafting and bonding time with my little one 🙂

Enough said :).

Enjoy the rest of your weekend, Folks!!! 🙂

2 Years After…

I’m quite ashamed to admit it but, yes, it’s been 2 years after I’ve received this really cool letterpress kit, that I finally found the time to bust it out of the box and give it a try.

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I’ve been on a creativity kick this year, and I guess it was really just a matter of time…Hahaha!  But that it took 2 years–shame, shame, right?

But anyway, here is how my first pass turned out.  Not too shabby, right?

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This is so exciting!!!  Can you imagine the possibilities and the stuff I can actually make? DIY paper products to death!!!!  Wahahaha!  I was so thrilled about my new toy, I actually stayed up late last night, buying more letterpress plates and inks!  Hahaha!

Cheers to new hobbies, even though they’re two years delayed!  Hahaha!  As they say, better late than never :).  And in this case, I’m glad I finally did.  This hobby has FUN written all over it!!!

The Weekend That Was

We are back from a wonderful extended weekend :)!  Off we went to the North, to enjoy a little bit of R and R with my in-laws.

It was the perfect retreat, especially after a hectic, busy work week!  While I definitely feel refreshed and recharged, I’d be lying if I said I feel ready to go back to work too.  Hahaha!

Here are some snippets of our weekend.  As you can tell, it was all about quality time with the little one, with a bit of “me” time snuck in between :)…

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I just love driving down SCTEx, especially on sunny days like these…

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We’re here!!!

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Relax mode ON!!!

Arie Goes Swimming

The little one is excited to take a dip!

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Mission accomplished!  Thank goodness she did not inherit my fear of the water 🙂

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Playtime with Dada…

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Taking a milk break by the poolside…In true A fashion, cool sunglasses are a must.

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And while my two water babies were enjoying the pool, I was also getting much needed reading, relaxing and creating time.

*Sigh* Hoping for more weekends like these! 🙂