Shop with ME at Suiteblanco!

Hi girlies!!! Here's another giveaway that's sure to get you Instagramming in three-two-one! Hehehe :) Suiteblanco has invited me, Kelly Misa and Camille Santiago to do a fun fashion challenge on April 26. Suiteblanco's Summer Muse KIM JONES will be the official judge (she's a sweetheart and her style is impeccable!) so this will make it even more interesting. AND THE BEST PART---I get to bring along a blog reader along with me!!! YES!!! That means, I could PICK YOU! All you have to do is just follow the simple steps below and if I choose you---I'll  be giving you a FULL MAKEOVER (head to toe!) c/o Suiteblanco! And whether I win or lose the challenge (let's pray I WIN!), you get to take home everything I let you wear for the makeover! How awesome is that?!? What a deal right?! 

1. Click the LIKE and TWEET buttons below.
2. Repost the image above on your INSTAGRAM page and tell me why you want to join this shopping challenge. Don't forget to tag @pattylaurel @suiteblanco and ADD THE HASHTAG #suitesummer in order to qualify.

IMPORTANT REMINDERS: 
1.) You'll have to be available on APRIL 26, Saturday for the Shopping Challenge with Kim Jones (with me as your teammate and mentor!) which will be held at the Suiteblanco Store in SM AURA. This contest is open to all Manila/Luzon residents who will be able to travel to the venue.
2.) Please make sure your IG account is on public mode so I can view your entries.
3.) A max of 3 entries per person only. Contest ends on April 23. 

Road Trip Snacks

Holy Week is upon us and so this means half of you will be on the road or traveling out of the country in the next few days. If you still want to eat healthy but still enjoy your vacation---why not consider these snack alternatives from HEALTHY OPTIONS. These are my favorites because 1) They taste GOOD!!!! 2)Although you'll still have to eat these chips in moderation, you can be sure that they don't have any harmful chemicals and toxic preservatives in them. :)

1. Pop'd Kerns
THIS IS SOOOOO ADDICTING! Don't be deceived by the size, it comes in a small pack but it's actually quite filling. It's not exactly pop corn---think of it as a crunchier and tastier version. I love the ORIGINAL flavor the best...hmmm..I think I should grab a bag today!

2.  Good Health Natural Foods' Olive Oil Potato Chips
Unlike your regular potato chip brand, these chips are cooked with Olive Oil making it much better for your heart. The Rosemary gives you a much more sophisticated flavor. You can pair these chips with a Roast Beef Sandwich or a Philly Cheesesteak Sandwich!

3. Van's Say Cheese
These Gluten Free crackers go perfectly well with Camembert and Honey!!! DRROOOOOOL!!! They are packed with nutrients too since it's made with Oats, Brown Rice Flour, Millet, Quinoa and Amaranth.

4. Cadia's Organic White Corn Tortilla Chips
I always munch on these babies late at night! Dip them in sour cream, cheese, or Cadia's Mango Salsa and you will find yourself snacking all through the night!

5. Popcorners
My 2 year old niece Bella is obsessed with this brand! And the rest of the family is hooked on it too. It's light, airy and oh so tasty! The calorie count is quite impressive too, for those who are conscious about their figure. 




Coachella Chic

I'll have to admit, some fashion trends that come out during Coachella season are a bit too ecclectic and costume-y for my taste. But I do love how some festival goers just go wild with their fashion choices, piling on everything and anything they can find all at once. Coachella is all about the flowers in your hair hippie-hipster chic which we can definitely draw some inspiration from this summer. Here are some of my favorites, shot by Craig Arend of Harper's Bazaar :)
There's one thing all these festival goers have in common: CUTE SUNNIES!!! It's all in the shades, baby!!! Your Coachella chic look can be perfect from neck to toe and totally ruined by the wrong pair of shades! Pacute FAIL! hehehe! This summer it's all about the sunnies---after all, it's the first thing people will notice when they see you at the beach. Here are some of my favorite picks from the Californian brand HOOLA. You can pick up a pair or two at COMMONTHREAD Greenbelt :)




Tuesday Design Inspiration


via apartment therapy

An&Ria's First Flight

My cousin Inigo shared this today and my love for old people was further validated! Hehehe! 
These two oldies are just too cute. Please watch this video!!!

Gungor and Jars of Clay at Walkway 2014

I'm still pinching myself right now. GUNGOR and JARS OF CLAY-----together---one night---at WALKWAY!?!?!?!:) Yes, IT really happened! Thank you again so much to Gungor and JOC for coming to Manila to support Church Simplified's Walkway 2014. We will forever be grateful! Thank you Lord for the excellent turn out. Looking forward to an even bigger concert next year :) And don't forget WALKWAY along Bonifacio High Street will be open to the public (entrance is FREE!) until Easter Sunday so please drop by with your family and friends. We will be manning the stations all week long! 

Something Cheesy

I LOOOOOVE CHEESE!!! Okay, maybe not as much as chocolates---that's just too hard to beat--But cheese, ohmyLord, I can't imagine living without cheese in my life. Just yesterday, I was at the Sprial's buffet in Sofitel and I think about 60% of my plate was filled with different types of cheese! I'm equally obsessed with cooking cheese too. Adding cheese to any dish makes it instantly tastier--even the simplest recipe can perform in stellar proportions if you just add some good quality cheese to it (especially for beginners like me!). Every time I hit the supermarket, I always make sure I spend a good 5 minutes at the cheese aisle. It's important to be extra meticulous about the type of cheese you use for cooking :) Don't laugh but sometimes I just google for recipes with CHEESE as it's main ingredient. I just type "Recipes with Parmesan" or "Recipes with Mozarella" and just pick the recipes that are manageable on my end. Here are some cheesy dishes I'd like to try in the coming weeks. 
Images from Eating Well 
My friends at Perfect Italiano sent me a whole box of cheese a few days ago and I went nuts! I felt like a little greedy mouse! All this cheese FOR MEEEEE?!?!?! Hahaha! Since I've been bunking at my parents all week (Patrick arrives on Tuesday!), they delivered the package to my Alabang address and so my mom spotted the box too! She was just as giddy, enumerating all the possible dishes she could whip up with the big cheese supply we had sitting pretty in our ref. "I can make Eggplant Parmigiana on Wednesday! Or my Cheesy Corn Casserole! Or maybe we can make pizza squares too?!" Ang saya naman! I love doing reviews for products that I actually like---lalo na kapag food related (at masarap)! 

We've been adding Perfect Italiano's cheese variants on most of our home cooked dishes and so far so good!!! They have the Parmesan Grated and Shredded variants (works great for salads, pastas, eggplant parmagiana and breaded chicken), Mozarella Block and Grated variants (extra ooey gooey-ness for sandwiches, lasagna and other dishes), and their Pizza Plus (a mix of mozarella, cheddar and parmesan works for DIY pizzas!). You can actually visit their website for more recipes, click HERE

But here's the GOOD NEWS!!! As you all know, it makes me extra happy when I'm able to share the love with my readers. So, I practically begged Perfect Italiano to give my readers something really BIG to look forward to. Thank you again so much Perfect Italiano for this super generous giveaway!!! Scroll down for the surprise!!:) This will make all the foodies and home cooks rejoice! 
Images from Perfect Italiano Website

I am giving away 
THREE MONTHS' SUPPLY OF 
PERFECT ITALIANO CHEESE!!!!!
Imagine all the dishes you can cook in 90 days!?!?! 

1. Click LIKE on the Perfect Italiano FB Page here. The winner will be announced here so you'll have to follow them to qualify. 

2. Is there a dish you'd like to cook for someone special? Share your "cheesy" recipe and tell us how you plan to make it extra special with Perfect Italiano. 
Send your answer, name, and home address to pattylaurelfilart@gmail.com on or before April 23, 2014.

Max of 300 words. One entry per person please. The winner will be announced on the Perfect Italiano FB Page. Open to all Philippine residents. 

Caffe Cagliari

What a pretty video :) :)

Caffe Cagliari from ThirtySix-O Media on Vimeo.

Agoda's Japan Sale

Everybody (and I MEAN EVUHHREHBODEH) I know has been posting about Japan. All these cherry blossom and ramen posts all over FB, Instagram and Twitter are making me miss the Land of the Rising Sun even more. So, makikiuso na rin ako! Here are some Japan flashback photos :) :)
Thanks to all these promo fares, it's much easier to plan a trip to Japan these days. And I have good news for you all!!! Please, please, please take advantage of this! I got an update from my friends in Agoda (I've been booking with Agoda for many years now!) and it was too GOOD of an offer to not share with all of you. AGODA will be having a 5 day flash deal on bookings done from April 14 to April 18. You can get up to 55% OFF on bookings valid for hotel stays from May 6 to July 19, 2014. You can book hotels in Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Sapporo, Yokohama, Nagoya, Fukuoka and Okinawa. If you ask me, my favorites are Tokyo, Osaka---and KYOTO! Kyoto is where my heart belongs! Hehehe!:) So set your alarm for April 14, better to book early before you get out-booked by someone else. Wishing you all happy Japanese adventures!

Pretty Girls All Over

Our three blogs (kellymisa.com, pattylaurel.com, and lifeafterbreakfast.com) came to life last Saturday through our very first #SPRINGFLINGPH! I can't wait to share all the photos and tell you all about our little happy project! In the meantime, here's a little teaser. Thanks again to all the lovely ladies who joined us last weekend :) :) 

Photos by Chris Clemente

My Random Tuesday Diary

Patrick flew to the States last Saturday for another business trip and will be back after 10 LOOOONG days. I know I'm supposed to get used to it at some point especially since it really is the nature of his job that requires him to do a lot of traveling (both locally and abroad), but it leaves me longing each and every time. Hayyy. I have found an incredible amount of respect for LDR couples, spouses of OFWS, pilots, flight attendants, etc. The kind of love that you have is indeed amazing! I feel like such a love wimp :)

If there's one thing though that I'm able to enjoy whenever Patrick is away, it would be time with my parents. I do love playing the "daughter" role all over again. Living in my house in Alabang makes me feel like a kid again and I'm always spoiled when I'm here (wala ng hugas-hugas ng pinggan and I can have Banana-Q anytime of day!). I'm just so blessed to have my parents as my friends in this season of my life. 
Sorry for the mega blurry photo..I had to zoom 10xxxxx.

Last Sunday, I attended the service at Union Church of Manila with my folks. This has been our home church for many years now and my parents have been serving the Lord quietly and actively through UCM for quite some time. It's been a few months since I last visited UCM (I've been attending CS/Victory with my husband) so I felt extra sentimental when I attended last Sunday. I do believe that church is more than just a building or the infrastructure (it really is more about the community of believers..the people who you can experience the love of God with) but I love everything about this church in the physical sense too--- the choir, the old Bibles stacked on each pew, even those small communion plastic glasses..all the tangibles seem so familiar and always bring me back to a certain period of my life. Even hymns/songs trigger memories of my past!

I felt a bit teary eyed when I saw our former Senior Pastor, Alex Aronis and his wife Carol along with Pastor Steve. They don't know me personally. I've only watched them from a distance. To them, I am just another face in the crowd. But to me, these are my real-life heroes. They may not know it but next to my parents, they were my champions of faith for many years. The Lord used them mightily in my life when I was searching and stuggling. Through their genuine, humble, and admittedly imperfect hearts, I was able to catch a glimpse of what this whole Christianity deal was about. And whenever I would fall under the spell of the world, just when I thought I was convinced that this whole faith thing was a waste of my time...their sermons would tug me in the right places and I would begin a dialogue with God all over again. Sometimes that's all you need. A little nudge towards the right direction. 

As a teen and up until my 20s, my parents had to literally drag me to church every Sunday. But somehow in the thick of things, in between obligation and pakikisama---a little part of me actually enjoyed attending church, I was just too cool to admit it back then. Why did I have to make things so complicated?! Hehehe! Imagine all the heartache I would've saved myself from if I just kept things simple from day one?! Oh, teenagers!!

Just thinking about those many nights I've caused my parents to pray even harder for me at night, the many times I've hurt them because of brash decisions brought about by my youth, my lack of understanding and inexperience in life..makes me feel ashamed. Hay. And not only did I hurt my parents, I hurt God too. And that's what makes me feel so horrible. Yet, even if I was unfaithful to HIM, he always remained true and steadfast with his love for me. Kakaiba talaga. I was reminded of the song by Hillsong "Stay and Wait",  "Who loved me through my rebel way, who chose to carry all my shame, who breathes in me with endless life...The king of glory Jesus Christ". 

I don't deserve this life but yet here I am because God loved me.  And also because the people who love God chose to show love to me too. So today, I thought of that. How many people have I missed out on? How many beautiful souls have I neglected? I mean come on, you don't have to go hard sell and preachy. Nobody wants that. What I'm talking about is a genuine, honest, I-don't-care-if-you-reject-me-I'm-still-gonna-make-you-feel-loved-today-and-that's-final kind of approach that would point others to God. But where do you start right? The goal is for God's love to shine so bright that when you encounter others, they won't even see you---it'll just be about HIM, all about HIM. Shucks. That seems like an impossible feat and would require a LOT of humility and grace! But hey, it won't hurt to try right? Baby steps, everyday. 

Family Time at Cintai by Corito's Garden

Because of our weird schedules, family time has become even more sacred for us. Whenever we get a pocket of free time, we zoom straight to the South to hang out with my folks or we plan simple activities with my in laws. I consider myself very, very, very lucky to have two wonderful families---equally kengkoy, easy to please and down to earth :) 

A few weekends ago, we were invited to CINTAI by CORITO'S GARDEN in Lipa Batangas. This Bali inspired retreat is perfect for families, couples, and barkadas looking for a quick getaway. It's an easy 1 hour drive from Alabang which makes it totally doable even for those with busy work calendars. The Star Tollway makes it such a quick trip.

I will let the photos speak for themselves. They have beautifully manicured gardens, free roaming animals, good food, spacious and tastefully decorated rooms, large swimming pools and a host of other amenities and services in between. It really is worth a visit! It is a secret gem which I hope you will discover too.

I would like to extend my deepest thanks to Patricia Palma Gil-Poniente and the rest of Corito's Garden for hosting me and my family :) For more info about this peaceful haven---visit their website here

I really loved the food in Coritos Garden! And they all come in generous servings, 
good enough for sharing. Be sure to try their Asian Roast Beef,  their Special Spiced 
Popcorn and Kimchi Quesadillas :)

Pillow fight with Ninong Patrick.
Pool time!!! Thanks again to Havaianas for my gold flip flops which go perfectly well with 
my gold malliot from Naked Sun Swimwear. 
The kids had so much fun playing with the ponies, chickens, peacocks, and other friendly creatures roaming around the property!

Fashion Friday: Liu Jo

So back to my obsession with gorgeous 40 something year olds, have you seen this video of Kate Moss rocking the Liu Jo campaign?!?! Can you believe this woman is 4-0?!?! Life indeed is unfair. But an equal stunner in the video would have to be the clothes and accessories from the Spring/Summer collection of this Italian brand.
Italian brand Liu Jo invited me to drop by their Glorietta store (it's located in the new wing) last week. I actually dropped by in between my meetings and ended up staying longer than expected. Doesn't this always happen to us girls?? 5 minutes only, I promise, promise! Which NEVER happens., rigghhhht??? 

I got lost in the sea of dresses, blazers, printed pants, wallets, bracelets, and BAGS! Oh dear me! Their BAGS are just so beautiful! Liu Jo was kind enough to gift me with a few eye candies and I can't wait to wear them :) BUT here's the even bigger news----they told me I can treat YOU (yes my readers mean a whole lot to me!) to a Liu Jo shopping spree as well!!!! Insert "EEEEEPPPPP!" here. Thank you again to Liu Jo for being so generous to my readers. Scroll down the blog entry for details :) :)


I'm giving away a 
LIU JO SHOPPING SPREE 
worth Php 10,000!!!!
1. Post the image above on your Twitter and/or Instagram Account. Make sure your accounts are on public mode so I can view your entries.

2. Tag @pattylaurel and @liujoph and tell us why you want to shop at Liu Jo. It's that simple!

Contest ends on April 10. Max of 3 entries per person only. The shopping spree will be in Liu Jo Glorietta.

Happy Skin Summer Edition 2014

Congratulations are in order for the dynamic duo behind HAPPY SKIN, Rissa Mananquil-Trillo and Jacqe Yuengtian-Gutierrez! These girls are conquering the beauty industry one lippie at a time! Happy Skin has created such a buzz---it's all over instagram, twitter and facebook and in every pouch, kikay kit, and makeup bag in Metro Manila.

And can we just give Rissa the "BEST in BUNTIS " award already?!?! Come on, you're all thinking it! I have 3 ultimate preggy pegs: Rica Peralejo, Ria Tanjuatco-Trillo (how lucky are these Trillo men?!), and Rissa! They just make motherhood so attractive and sexy! Even Angelina Jolie would feel inferior next to these 3. Lord, please also bless me with a safe, healthy and PRETTY pregnancy in the future (yes, vain ako! Aaminin ko na!).  I want to glow, glow, glow!

Back to HAPPY SKIN (sorry Rissa's bump was a good distraction), I really how playful and flirty this brand is. It's actually a good reminder for us ladies to always have a good laugh, to have a bit of fun, and continuously flirt with our husbands (and BFs). HAPPY SKIN makes it fun to be a girl!

Both Rissa and Jacq take pride in developing beauty essentials that are perfectly suited for Filipina skin types and tones. They use only the finest ingredients (developed and created in Japan) for each of their products. So even if their packaging suggests that it is a very fun brand, these girls do take skin care and makeup seriously :)

Again, CONGRATULATIONS to HAPPY SKIN Philippines!!! Thanks again for inviting me to your summer launch. I'm looking forward to seeing more exciting products from your company.

Check out my HAPPY SKIN loot featuring their must haves for the season.

For more details about HAPPY SKIN's Summer Collection, click HERE

Orphan Black

Like I mentioned a few posts ago, Lifetime Asia has been asking me to review their shows. One show that has caught my attention is ORPHAN BLACK. It premieres on April 7 and will air every Monday at 9PM on Lifetime Asia but you can watch the first episode online  NOW for free---HERE. The series and it's lead actress Tatiana Maslany (who looks like a brunette Avril Lavigne, right?!?!) has bagged quite a number of awards for this show. 

I caught the first episode and I was hooked. Tatiana Maslany does such a great job of transitioning from one character to another, changing her mannerisms, voice, and even her accent. She does the whole "double life" act so seamlessly. The first episode sweeps through the events in one go, capturing your attention even with just a few minutes. The end of episode 1 also gives you another shocker, which I won't spoil! Hehehe! Just make sure you watch the first ep on Lifetime!

Here's the gist of the series: "Sarah is a streetwise outsider, currently on the run from a bad relationship and painfully separated from her own daughter. When an eerily lookalike stranger commits a shocking suicide right in front of her, Sarah sees a potential solution to all her problems by assuming the dead woman’s identity and clearing out her bank account. But instead, she stumbles headlong into a kaleidoscopic thriller mystery, and soon uncovers an earth-shattering secret: she is a clone. As Sarah searches for answers, she soon learns there are more like her out there, genetically identical individuals, nurtured in wildly different circumstances. And someone is trying to kill them off, one by one. "

Degustacion at The Gallery Vask

Good morning folks! I've been receiving a lot of queries via email, mostly from loving boyfriends/husbands asking for tips on how to woo their women. (Hooray for our romantic boys!) Often times, they ask for restaurant suggestions so I've set aside my list of highly recommended eateries in the metro. Last week, the husband and I were invited to the much buzzed about VASK GALLERY and so it appears that I have another restaurant to add to my list! 

Before making dinner plans at VASK GALLERY, here a few things you might want to consider. For those who are familiar with degustation menus then this will all seem like a no-brainer for you. For the first timers, here's a little 101 for you :)

First, you'll need to set aside a good amount of time for this. Believe me, this is not a dinner you'd like to rush. It's a "sit-savor-enjoy the moment-put away your cellphone" kind of dinner. If I didn't have you guys to blog for, I would have just kept my camera/iPhone tucked away in my bag throughout the dinner, but because I love you guys---I took lots of pics of course! Hehehe! But for my next visit, I'll definitely choose the "revel like this is your last meal" route. So for your VASK GALLERY date, please make sure you keep the rest of your evening free and completely dedicated to this dinner with your sweetheart.

Next, understand that 14 courses doesn't mean it'll get you stuffed like in an all-you-can-eat buffet.  Your tummy will feel satisfied, yes, but you won't feel the need to unbutton your pants afterwards. The servings per course are perfectly sized so you can enjoy the flavors without overwhelming your appetite. 

And lastly, erase whatever preconceived notions you might already have about degustations and multiple courses---just let yourself go and enjoy the whole process like a first timer!:) Chef Chele' has an exciting repertoire (which I believe changes from time to time) that will certainly wow you. 


"Hailing from Santander, Spanish-born Executive Chef J. Luis Gonzalez recognized his affinity for cooking at an early age. Chef Chele, as he is fondly called, finished his degree at Artxanda, Bilbao. His culinary acumen and attention to detail earned him a referral at the restaurant of Juan Mari Arzak, acknowledged as the Father of Modern Spanish Cuisine. He went on to work in the world's most respected restaurants, such as El Bulli, El Celler de Can Roca, Mugaritz, and Nerua-Guggenheim. 



Coming to Manila with his extensive background on cooking, Chef Chele has developed a distinctive awareness of how to combine modern techniques with an Asian perspective. This is educated by his passion for learning new ingredients, discovering new flavours, and finding different ways to understand food. He is able to balance the traditional and the modern to highlight a culinary experience that is both fun and adventurous. 

Using the knowledge obtained from working in some of the best restaurants in the world and his numerous Asian culinary trips, Chef Chele creates his own personal world; a world that delivers an exceptional culinary experience at Gallery Vask. 

This exclusive fine dining area is hailed globally for Chef Luis Gonzalez’s creative conceptual cuisine. The dishes that are presented in Gallery VASK allow diners to create their own perfect gastronomic world. The very personal experience of this special room is revealed through a blend of Western cuisine with Asian influences. It is reserved for a maximum of 20 people at one time."
Text above provided by Vask Gallery

So here's the thing, folks.. Initially, I was planning to describe each dish that was served (like I always do for most of my food blogs/reviews) but the degustacion by the VASK GALLERY is an entirely different foodie journey that one has to experience first hand. So as not to rob you from the whole Chef Chele' immersion, I will just indulge you with photos for now. I don't want to be like that annoying friend who gives you movie spoilers, hahaha! So I hope this convinces you to actually book a table.

Each course comes with a generous description. You get a clear overview of the ingredients (both local and foreign), the cooking techniques used, the textures/flavors/aromas to look for, and everything else in between. Hearing the backstory of each dish before it touches your tastebuds gets your palate even more excited! I love that they described each dish with words that were both thorough and creative without losing you with some heavy culinary jargon. If there was something that baffled us, Chef Luis and the rest of the Vask staff were quick to answer in a very accommodating manner. Also, I must give extra snaps to Besay Gonzalez and Joy Sorongon for making our first VASK experience truly memorable!:) 
Again, my deepest thanks to the VASK GALLERY team for hosting me and Patrick for this exciting Degustacion with Chef J. Luis Gonzalez!

VASK GALLERY

5th Floor, Clipp Center, 11th Avenue Corner, 39th Street, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig

For reservations at Gallery VASK, contact 0917-546-1673 or experience@galleryvask.com





 

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