10 ways to celebrate summer the whole year round

The whirring of the tricycles in the streets signals the start of schools. When early in the morning children are ushered off to their schools, summer is officially over! But does it really have to end? We can extend the summer by getting involved in fun activities that remind us of summer.  This is a self-serving list because this documents what happened this summer- my summer.

If you have read my previous blog post, you know that have lamented over having a busy schedule. I reminded myself of what matters most: people. If somebody needs my presence, I try to be there. Nobody ever regretted not having time for work. Even with a full workload, I try to make the most of summer. These are the things I did last summer which are not really season-dependent, these things can be done all year round.

1. Take the road less traveled.

My cousin came for a visit and we went to visit her parents.  The house is located in an unpaved area of the city where tricycles refused to go so we just walked.

I welcome the green scenery and we found friends.  Quack! Quack!

2. Explore you  own city. 

This might be difficult to do in the streets of Metro Manila as pollution and traffic can easily wear you down. Try UP Academic Oval, Quezon Memorial Circle and La Mesa Ecopark. 😀

The ubiquitous orange tricycle is the king of the road in my city.

The ubiquitous orange tricycle is the king of the road in my city.

3. Enjoy the burst of colors in flowers.

Can you see the eensy weensy spider?

4. Chomp on street food and summer coolers.

Making tuhog2x the fishball. HA!

This is the ultimate summer food. Halo-halo!

5. Play with cute kids. My nephew grew fast.

6. Visit nearest pool.

We were back at Sprinkles and they have installed their water slides which gave us the license to act like kids. HA!

7. Attend a town fiesta!

May is fiesta time in Butuan and Gingoog! Yes, we were in both fiestas- the first one as a host and the latter as a guest.

This is the simple fiesta menu at home.

This is the simple fiesta menu at home.

  This is part of the dessert table at my aunt’s house in Gingoog.

 8. Vote!

I know you cannot vote all year round. heheh However, you can actively participate in the different issues in the country by letting your voice be heard even through social media.

9. Hit the nearest beach. In our case, we went out of town to… Camiguin! I will blog more about that trip. On the foreground is Camiguin’s White Island where you have to ride that boat to reach the island.  The volcano in the background is Mt. Hibok-Hibok.IMG_8370

10. Listen to music.

When it comes to music, I always ask my friend, Gail, for suggestions. She knows what’s hip (and not necessary popular). She mentioned this excellent guitarist, Igor Presnyakov. Nice!

Here he is playing my favorite, Pachelbel’s Canon in D.

How was your summer? summer

5 Ideas for a Productive Summer

There is no reason to be bored nowadays. There are different gadgets and apps that keep a person occupied . Waiting in line is no longer a difficult chore because you can always play mobile games, listen to music,  watch videos and even pay bills. It can be tempting for parents to let these devices babysit their kids.  There are ways to keep kids occupied this summer without having to touch a computer game. What they can do is use these devices as tools for more productive activities. Adults can learn some new skills, too.  Albert Einstein said, ” One you stop learning, you start dying.”

Here are some productive activities you  and/or  your kids can do:

1. Art. Give a kid paper and crayons and let their imagination develop. For those who want to teach their kids the basics in art, there are many resources in the library and on the internet where you can develop the drawing skills of the kids. Here is a simple instruction on how to draw a lion .


Those are in for a challenge can sketch something as elaborate as this one.

Source: creativepro.com via kat on Pinterest


2. Snail mail. With the advent of email, sending out birthday cards became a novelty. It is nice to surprise a friend by sending a card through the mail.  Homemade cards are easy to make. How about this one for starters?


3. Plant something.  You can plant a tree.



Those who live in small spaces can start with an herb garden. The herbs can be used for cooking.



4. Discover new recipes. Tired of frying food all the time.  You can experiment on new recipes and  involved you kids in the preparation. It does not have to be complicated. How about this?



5. Summer classes. There are different summer classes available. Some are on crafts and some are of the academics type. A child can enjoy some play time and some advanced lessons or two. It does not hurt to engage them in advance Science or Math lessons. If that is too cerebral, how about learning a new language? A new language expands their world and it can get pretty handy when traveling. The world has become smaller with the advances in telecommunications and transportation. They can learn at their own pace by hiring a tutor. If you live in the United States, you can hire tutors at tutorspree.com where they have a meticulous method of screening their tutors to make sure your child gets the best learning experience possible.

Get the beach body of your dreams in five easy steps

Are you going on holiday this year but worried about stepping out on the beach in your bikini? If so, you’ve come to the right place. Here are five stress free tips that’ll help you shape up in time for summer.

 Hit the gym

Getting that well-toned body requires some physical activity (even though we wish it didn’t), so why not hit the gym? Go for a run on the tread mill; work up a sweat on the cross trainer; or give the rowing machine a go. You could even book into an aerobics class, try your hand at Zumba or see what Pilates is all about – so don’t make excuses. Liposuction surgery can remove fat in difficult places, but a decent exercise regime could do the trick – naturally.

Make the most of the great outdoors

If you hate the gym, make the most of the great outdoors. Enjoy a relaxing bike ride through the country, take the family on a weekend hike or treat the kids to a fun-filled outing. Keeping active will help you burn calories and should take your mind off food. Shaping up should be fun, so pack your life full of adventure and get fit in style.


Improve your diet

There are many ways to look beautiful this summer, but a well-balanced diet can help. Eat three nutritious meals at regular intervals throughout the day and chomp on wholemeal bread, vegetable sticks or cans of soup if you feel peckish (as these will keep your energy levels up). Many people think avoiding carbohydrates is the best way to diet, but your body needs a range of nutrients, so don’t cut out an entire food group altogether.

Use visual stimuli

Heading to a luxurious place this summer? Then put a picture on your fridge for inspiration. Imagine walking along an exotic beach in a brand new bikini and stop yourself from overeating. We all need a little encouragement from time-to-time, so make the most of visual stimuli. It’s also a good idea to put a calendar in an obvious place, so you can see how long you’ve got before you leave. Seeing the days fly by could spring you into action and keep you motivated.


Pamper yourself

Take good care of yourself and feel beautiful in time for summer. Follow a healthy eating plan and enjoy regular exercise – but make sure you pamper and preen. A little relaxation’s good for the soul, so enjoy a massage at a beauty parlour or course of Botox with a reputable company. Many clinics offer skin rejuvenation treatments too and will help you look and feel great in no time! Take the time to unwind and look as good as you can.


Preparing for summer doesn’t have to be a stressful process, so make sure you feel great and enjoy the sun.

**This blog post is a collaboration with Isabella Franklin. She wrote the post. I made all the graphics with my own photos.

Beat the summer heat even without Magnum

This is not a Magnum post.  I still have not tried Magnum. Even if I want to, I can’t find one in my city. I resisted buying one when it was introduced to avoid the craze. Now that there are no more stocks left, I want one! HA!

Here’s an interesting infographics on Magnum by myManila.net.

Sorry for being sidetracked there.

Here is the formula to beat summer heat: FRUIT+ MILK + SUGAR.

Avocado in my part of the world is dessert. 😀

We cut these in halves.

We scoop out the fleshy meat.

Blend with sugar and milk.

This is the same device as this one. It is 5-in-1 wonder.

After blending, we freeze the mixture to make ice candy…

and sherbet.

But wait there’s more! ( I sound like an infomercial)

We can try another fruit. How about melon?

We cut the fruit in half.

We scoop out the seeds. Don’t throw them yet. Strain them to get the juice.

We grate the flesh; mix with milk, sugar and the strained juice.  Refrigerate.

And we have this for dessert.

For days when we do not have fruit in the kitchen, we dig into our pockets and look for P20 to buy this one.

I like the white chocolate flavor.

This is Day 15 of the 30-day blogging challenge.

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