Quaker oats, my favorite supergrain


Since Tristan now eats what we eat, Carlos and I have made a conscious effort to eat clean and eat well. No more processed, high sodium/high sugar foods, as well as anything canned or high in preservatives. As much as possible, we try to stick to fresh fruits and vegetables, high-fiber grains and lean chicken and beef, as well as fish and all kinds of seafood. We also cook our own meals now, which have been a little time-consuming, but at least now we know what’s in our food.

We only decided to make this change a few weeks ago. We usually had food delivered from our go-to restaurants and one day we realized we didn’t want to feed our baby what we ordered. Not that it tasted bad, but it wasn’t healthy enough for Tristan. That’s when we knew we had to make a lifestyle change–we had to eat less of the fast and processed and more of the fresh and healthy, and we had to do it asap. I mean, if we didn’t want our baby to eat this sort of food, why should we eat it? We thought long and hard about it and realized these things add up in the long run and we might end up sick in the future if we don’t make any changes. Then who will take care of our little guy?! Oh, the things you need to think of when you have a baby.

Like any mom, I want the best for my family, and I know that good food is equal to health. That’s why I’ve been reading up on the healthiest food, so that I can stock up our pantry with these ingredients and incorporate them into our meals. One super food which we tend to overlook has been around for ages, is not expensive, and is actually available everywhere!

It is the humble oatmeal. We take this super grain for granted because you can pretty much buy it everywhere. But what most of us don’t know is that it is an all-in-one source of nutrition. Oats are packed with all kinds of nutrients–you will be amazed with how much good it can do for your body. OATS contain:

Carbohydrates to provide the fuel your body needs.

Protein to help build and maintain muscles, as well as support growth and development.

Fiber to help with digestion, and make you feel full (no unhealthy snacking when you eat this). Oats also contain a special type of solute fiber called beta glucan, which helps reduce blood cholesterol levels.

Vitamin B1 to help maintain normal nerve function and energy metabolism.

Vitamin B6 to establish normal immune and nervous system.

Iron to promote hemoglobin in red blood cells.

Magnesium to maintain healthy bones and regular heartbeat.

Phosphorus, when combined with Calcium strengthens bones and teeth.

Zinc to support the body’s growth and development and maintain normal immune function and wound healing.

So, I was totally floored when I read all these nutrients that can be found in oats. I had no idea! No wonder why my mom always made it a point to serve oatmeal for breakfast when we were growing up. It is so good for you–it provides sustained energy for your daily needs, helps you control over-eating (you feel full after eating just a bowl of oats), it aids in digestive health by promoting regular bowel movement (something we don’t think about but is so important for our health), it contains antioxidants and offers protection against the effects of free radicals (such as cell damage and inflammation) and it is believed to lower the risk of cancer. Phew! That is a whole lot of good for such a small grain.

The best part is you can buy this superfood in any supermarket or convenience store, and it comes in all kinds of varieties and flavors. Yes, Quaker (the #1 oat brand in the world) has expanded its products, giving us options that range from breakfast food to healthy snacks. Check out my favorites.


These are definitely staples in our pantry, and provide my family with energy and nutrition for the entire day. My favorites are Fruit and Nuts Instant Oatmeal, Raisin Oatmeal Cookies and Instant Oats Caldo!❤ Yay for Quaker Oats!

Natalac Feed Love


I’ve been exclusively breastfeeding Tristan for 14 months now, and I have no plans of stopping just yet. I have to admit, this decision came as a surprise as it was not part of my plan. Initially, I was going to breastfeed until Tristan turned one, but as the weeks rolled by after the big day I found myself wanting to extend more and more. I didn’t expect weaning to be so difficult. Not because Tristan would not transition to formula milk, but because I couldn’t let go.

It’s funny, because I can still remember how I counted the months/weeks/days until Tristan turned one. It was a big deal for me because that was the day I would supposedly have my freedom. I thought, how nice not to feed on demand and not have to bring my baby with me wherever I go. I can wear whatever I want because my outfit doesn’t have to breastfeeding-friendly. And I can finally drink alcohol after two years!

Now that I have finally reached the one year mark, I don’t want to stop. I think about all these things that I couldn’t wait to do/not do, and they don’t seem so great anymore. I’ve been seriously questioning my decision and wonder if other nursing moms feel the same way. I cannot seem to wean myself from Tristan! I just cant, not right this moment. I see how well my baby is thriving, and our bond is so strong. Also, I cant bear the thought of not being near my son all the time, the way we are now. Especially not being there when he asks for me. I’ve been lucky enough to have the kind of work that allows me to bring my baby with me wherever I go. And I cant imagine leaving him at home when I can bring him with me.

No doubt, breastfeeding has its ups and downs. But the good far outweighs the “bad” (not being able to wear high neck tops and dresses and not being able to drink alcohol are not considered bad at all). There is nothing healthier, more nutritious and better than mother’s milk. And if I can continue breastfeeding to be able to give this to my son, then I will do it. Especially since my supply is still high, thanks to the malunggay supplement I take: Natalac.

I know I am not alone in this. There has to be other breastfeeding moms that feel as passionate about nursing as I do, or is just as clingy as I am haha. Truly, the dialogue between mothers who choose to breastfeed their babies is important because the knowledge we can gain from shared experiences can really help us in our own breastfeeding journey. That’s why I take the time to talk to other breastfeeding moms so that I can get inspired with their stories, and able to share my experiences as well.


The perfect place for sharing: inside one of Natalac’s Feed Love Pods! Natalac recently unveiled their first pod, and boy, was it a hit with the moms! It is a shared space where moms can feed love in comfort, and feel loved, too. Mommies can interact here and express support, communicate and basically be there for other moms. Inside, it is super nice! There are two big couches, and there is a TV screen where moms can watch informative breastfeeding videos (featuring me and Nicole). These videos are part of the Feed Love PodTV, and it is Natalac’s way of spreading useful information about breastfeeding to moms out there.

And with every Natalac Feed Love Pod, there is the Feed Love Wall. This is another way moms can show their support to each other by writing their own uplifting messages on a mini wall.

I couldn’t be more excited about this project by Natalac. There really aren’t enough nursing stations or family rooms in Metro Manila, and these could really help make breastfeeding more comfortable for both moms and babies. (Please install these in more public places, Natalac!)


Apart from Feed Love Pods, Natalac also launched their Feed Love Boncho. So, of course, it is hard to have privacy during feeding time specially when you’re out with your family. That’s why Natalac came up with an accessory that is both stylish and useful and that is the breastfeeding poncho (“boncho”, for short). You can use it in 14 different ways (and counting), but most importantly this can be used as a Nursing shawl that makes it possible for you to feed in public. Other ways you can wear it: as a cape, a cozy wrap, a scarf, and a poncho. There are so many uses, and it is super soft and nice to use. What I love most about it is that it is printed with words of love and support from other moms–it inspires you to keep breastfeeding everyday!


The first Natalac Feed Love Breastfeeding Pod is now at SM Aura Premiere. You can’t miss it–it’s at the ground floor activity center, right beside a gorgeous photo exhibit of breastfeeding mommas. Feed Love Bonchos should be available there, too!



Mateo’s Restaurant & Cafe


What a lovely dinner! I’ve been meaning to visit Mateo’s Restaurant & Cafe for awhile now, but never got to it (hay, life happened). My friend Lala Jara-Tuazon had been inviting me to come and try her family’s restaurant since I got pregnant (that’s more than a year ago), and I am glad I finally found the time to go. We were actually all together shooting the second season of The Parent Files (produced by fellow Baby Barangay and supermom Cat Juan-Ledesma) when we realized the location for our shoot (The Parenting Emporium) was just blocks away from Mateo’s. And so we all went for dinner, which turned out to be a wonderful feast!

Mateo’s is a casual dining restaurant and cafe that serves Spanish and Filipino cuisine. Personally, I love Spanish food so I was a little A LOT excited to sample their best dishes that evening. And to my delight, the food was excellent! The menu is made up of family recipes by Lala’s aunt, Grace Valerio, who also heads the kitchen. Lala opened Mateo’s along with her Tita Grace and Margaux Lucena, who is a close family friend. I think this is the secret to the restaurant’s happy and homey vibe–their food has a lot of heart and soul in it! I highly recommend you try the croquetas, lengua, roast beef, paella and their chocolate cake. Oh, and don’t forget to order their dalandan juice–it is so refreshing!

IMG_8721Love the little details in this restaurant. It feels relaxed and homey.

IMG_8740These ladies take the best photos. Here they are hard at work.

IMG_5189Bruschetta (P195). Four pieces, made with yummy mushroom and garlic.

IMG_8744Croquetas con Chorizo (P220). So good. It has bits of chorizo and comes with a special dipping sauce.

IMG_8735Gambas al Ajilo (P385). Shrimps sautĂŠed in sofrito and garlic, and served with homemade bread.

IMG_8727Mateo’s Garden Salad (P280). Lolarossa, mixed greens, peaches, feta cheese, and tortilla crisps in homemade raspberry vinaigrette.

IMG_5190Excellent tapas.

IMG_5191My little family.❤ We were so happy with the food, even Tristan enjoyed.

IMG_5192Dalandan basil cooler (P95/glass, P270/carafe). So yummy! This is a must-order.

IMG_8773Lengua with Three Mushroom Cream Sauce (P410). This is hands down my favorite dish–ox tongue, oyster/shiitake/button mushrooms in heavy cream served with mashed potatoes.

IMG_5194Crispy Bagnet Sisig (P275). Served with sizzling pate and chicharon toppings.


IMG_5195Pan Grilled Salmon with Black Risotto (P545). Marinated grilled salmon served with squid ink risotto and mango salsa.

IMG_5193Spanish Seafood Paella (P875). Mateo’s specialty!

IMG_5197Caramel Chocolate Cake (P150/slice, P1050/whole). This was the perfect ending to an amazing dinner. So moist and chocolate-y!

IMG_5196Their desserts are specially made by Lala’s aunt. These are homemade and so delicious.

IMG_8782We will definitely be back!❤


Mateo’s Restaurant & Cafe

54 N. Domingo Street, Horseshoe Village, New Manila, Quezon City
For reservations, call (02) 6963724.


Floral jumpsuit


There’s nothing like a printed jumpsuit to help brighten up your day. This one from Mango is definitely a keeper–it is made of light and airy material and feels great against the skin. I wore it with leather heels from SM Parisian and a leather stitch clutch from Aranaz. The necklace is from Hey Jow. Happy Monday!❤

Pink’s Hot Dogs at BGC

My husband and I ate here on a whim. We were walking back to our car when I saw the PINK’s sign and remembered how much my friend raved about it. And so, I dragged Carlos and went in for an early dinner. To be honest, I was thinking this would be more of a late merienda since it’s only hotdogs. But after we wolfed down two fully loaded hotdogs, chili cheese fries and ginger beer we were super full and skipped dinner altogether.


Carlos ordered The Hollywood Legend, which is their signature chili cheese dog. It was definitely good–the hotdog was tasty and the onions, chili and cheddar cheese perfectly complemented it. I have to say, the bun was equally good and from what I heard, it is made fresh daily by Wildflour (the owners brought in Pink’s). Carlos really liked this one. I took a bite and also liked it, but I really loved my order so it didn’t have the same impact with me.


So, here’s my order: it’s called Don’t Mess With Texas and it was huge. I had to remove some of the onion rings because I couldn’t bite into the sandwich. And when I did, WOW. The hotdog, bacon, cheese, coleslaw, onion rings and barbecue sauce were all just so good. The BBQ sauce was on the sweet side, and really brought the whole thing together. And the bacon was salty and crunchy, just the way I like it. I really loved this and recommend you try it when you eat here.


And for our side dish, we ordered chili cheese fries. This was also quite good, though this was a little redundant to Carlos’s order. We enjoyed it though! We both got Bundaberg Ginger Beer to wash it all down–it was a yummy meal! We will definitely be back to try the other hotdogs.


No to mosquito bites, NO to DENGUE!


It is rainy season once again, which means we should be extra careful of mosquitoes (actually, in the Philippines it is a year-round battle against them)! Living in a tropical country, we know how dangerous these creatures are. Not only do they leave big, itchy bites on us, but they can actually transmit DENGUE, which can be deadly if untreated. Dengue is actually quite common in our country–we all know at least one person who has had it. A close friend of mine almost didn’t make it because his blood platelet count suddenly dropped because of dengue. I remember my friends and I were praying hard for him to overcome it, which thank God, he did. Another friend was not so lucky, and passed away because of dengue. He was only in high school, and had his whole life ahead of him. How sad that he lost his life so unexpectedly, to a mosquito bite, which could’ve been avoided.

Because of all the first-hand experiences from my family and friends, I take mosquito bites seriously. I really try my hardest not to get bitten by mosquitoes, and I make sure my husband and Tristan are protected from them. That’s why I stock up on citronella candles/sticks and OFF! Insect Repellent Lotion, because I don’t want my family to get bitten. I’ve even invested on electric bug zappers and those mosquito-zapping racquets for our house. Health is one thing I don’t take lightly, especially when it comes to my family so I take all necessary precautions to avoid any of us from catching dengue.

One brand I’ve always trusted when it comes to mosquito repellent is OFF! Insect Repellent Lotion. I’ve come to love the brand because mosquitos seem to love my blood–I always get bitten! As a kid, there wasn’t a time when I didn’t have bites on my legs and arms (the worst are bites on my feet). Which is why my parents were always vigilant, and had me tested whenever I would I would get a fever. I struggled with bites throughout my childhood until I got to my teen years, until finally, I discovered OFF! Lotion.

Since then, I always have a bottle in my bag (a big bottle when I go to the beach or spent time outdoors), and I never forget to apply the stuff when I’m out. I love that the lotion itself is lightweight when you apply it, and it is effective for hours–I really don’t get bitten the whole day after I’ve applied it.

Now that I’m a mom, I’ve been cautious and always make sure to apply OFF! Insect Repellent Lotion on me, my husband and even on my yaya. Tristan is still too young to use it (he is only a year old), so for now, we are sticking to a baby-friendly brand. But as soon as he is old enough I am switching to OFF! Insect Repellent Lotion because I know how effective and long-lasting it is (really perfect for energetic kids who play all day). It really is the best protection against dengue-carrying mosquitoes and gives me peace of mind when it comes to my family. Two of my favorite variants are: OFF! Overtime because it has a DermaCool formula (I love how cool and light it is on my skin), and OFF! For Kids since it has three-hour protection, it is dermatologically-tested and has a sweet tropical fresh fragrance. Both are perfect for everyday use–I’ve stocked up our medicine cabinet with bottles of these so I never run out.


CONTEST ALERT! To all my dear readers, I’ll be giving away OFF! Insect Repellant Lotion Gift Packs and P1,000 worth of Sodexo Gift Certificates! All you have to do is:

  1. Take a selfie/welfie with your child or family using any variant of OFF! Insect Repellent Lotion.
  2. Post it on Twitter or Instagram and caption what’s your favorite thing about OFF! Insect Repellent Lotion using the hashtag #OFFPeaceOfMind and tag @kellymisa so I can see it.
  3. You may send as many entries as you want!

Winners will be chosen via electronic raffle and participants may only win once. The contest is until August 26, 2016.

* SC Johnson and Son, Inc. and other official media partners and sponsors’ employees are disqualified from joining.

Good luck! I’ll be checking for your posts everyday so keep them coming.


#DinoPlay at The Mind Museum


My little family was invited to visit The Mind Museum’s latest traveling exhibit called DINO PLAY, an immersive and fascinating interactive exhibit designed for children 2 years old and up. Of course, Tristan is only one so he really wasn’t able to enjoy all the activities they have lined up for the kids (they have super fun things to do like unearthing bones at Dino Dig, examining fossils at Dino Lab, climbing a lookout tower with binoculars in search of hidden dinos in Dino Fun, and dressing up like a dinosaur and making footprints in Dino Den). Nevertheless, he enjoyed the exhibit. I can tell because he was smiling the whole time and he slept so soundly that night. Carlos and I had a lot of fun, too. Dino Play features massive and also small scale models, and real dinosaur fossil bones!

This is a must for all kids, most especially if they love dinosaurs! Dino Play is at The Mind Museum (JY Campos Park, 3rd Ave., Bonifacio Global City, Taguig) for a limited time, so be sure to drop by soon. Oh, and check out The Mind Museum too–it is always a lot of fun for the whole family.

IMG_8486IMG_8554IMG_8550IMG_8582IMG_8538IMG_8558IMG_8590IMG_8561IMG_8488IMG_8545IMG_8535IMG_8655IMG_8618IMG_8532IMG_8501IMG_8493IMG_8643IMG_8653IMG_8641IMG_8525IMG_8513        IMG_8490

10 things I love about my Sony Handycam HDR-PJ675


I have to admit, I’ve always preferred taking photos to shooting videos. Photos are much easier to edit, and you can compose photos faster than taking a video. Plus, photos are easier to control–you point the camera at a subject, make sure it’s focused and click away; while videos are more likely to be shaky, noisy and blurry if you’re not careful. Maybe that’s why I like Instagram more than Snapchat (or Instagram Stories), though I can definitely see that more and more people are shifting to videos now.

I mean, I can see why it is getting popular. Gadgets with video cameras, and video cameras themselves are becoming more affordable. You don’t need to save up for several months to buy one, and most are compatible with your phone, your tablet, laptop and computer. And, it is now easier to edit videos, thanks to the many apps and programs you can easily download (most of them are free, too).

Come to think of it, videos are pretty cool. I mean, if you watch a video of an old beach trip and browse through photos from the same trip, you will feel more nostalgic with the video. The video is more likely to capture the moment so you remember what you were feeling at the time the video was taken. Browsing thru photos can do that, but it wont bring back memories the way videos can.


I recently discovered a love for taking videos when Sony sent me their new HDR-PJ670. To be honest, I haven’t held a camcorder since my college days (I remember, it was a Sony, too, and I used it for my Introduction to Organizational Video class, and later my thesis). My old camcorder was way bigger than the one I have now, and sooooo much more complicated to use. It used tape (HDV or high definition video on cassette tape) that required me to edit the old fashioned way: using VHS (I have a headache just thinking about it), so yes, it is definitely jurassic compared to the beauty I have now. The design is still very similar to the old one I had though, which is one of the things I like about it. It is like I’m using my old camcorder, but it is so much smarter, faster and simpler.

I am definitely no techie, but I know when I like a gadget (I use it all the time). I’ve had the Sony HDR-PJ670 for several weeks now and I am happy to report that I’ve taken A LOT of videos with it (mostly of Tristan and our trips). I like that it is a completely different gadget from my SLR camera and phone–it is really for taking videos, though I can also take great photos with it. I am still learning how to edit videos, but so far I have great material and its all thanks to this camcorder. I wanted to share the 10 things I love about this camera, which I hope will help you decide whether or not you need one in your life. Here are 10 reasons why you should buy a Sony HDR-PJ670:

1.) The camcorder has a nice compact design, and it is easy to use. Although it is said to be a few ounces heavier than the more basic models of Sony, I didn’t really notice the weight. This is definitely not an issue for me as it felt solid and quite stable, especially with the handstrap. It also has a USB 2.0 cable right in the handstrap which makes it easy to charge when you forget to bring your cable.

2.) It has a great LCD display. The camera has a 3.0-inch Clear Photo Plus LCD display, which makes it a joy to take videos and preview your shots. It is also touch screen, so there are just a few buttons next to the screen (not like my old camcorder which had so many confusing buttons).

3.) An awesome feature: it has a built-in LED projector. On the opposite side of the camera’s screen door is a small LED projector that allows you to watch videos at a reduced resolution of 640 x 360 at 25 lumens. This makes it super easy to view your videos without a television/monitor–all you need is a white wall. I tried it when I was at the beach with my family and they were so amazed with this feature.

4.) Videos are captured at 1080p/60p at 50 Mbps. I asked my husband about this (he is the most techie person I know) and he says it is pretty impressive. The videos are all high definition, and are awesome to watch if you have a nice television. Obviously I don’t know much about these things, but I saw it for myself when we connected it to our TV. The video quality is amazing! My shots are another story though, I still need to practice and have a long way to go before they look professional. Anyway, the videos are just for fun!

5.) It has the ideal format for easy editing. The format of this camcorder uses MP4, which apparently makes video editing super easy. I did my research and read it is the ideal formal to use if you want to see the best video quality possible. I am no director/video editor, but I definitely appreciate this feature.

6.) The camera has a sensor that makes it great for low light conditions. This is tried and tested. I used the camera to take night shots and the videos came out pretty great. The Sony HDR-PJ670 is equipped with a back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS sensor that helps you shoot in low light conditions.

7.) It has a feature that helps make your videos smooth/less shaky. The camera has a Balanced Optical SteadyShot image stabilization feature that makes sure your videos are smooth and steady even when you zoom all the way. You get 30x optical zoom which can optionally extend to 60x Clear Image Zoom, which is pretty good for a small camcorder.

8.) It takes great photos. This is a plus so I don’t need to bring out my SLR/phone when I shoot videos. The photos captured are 9.2-megapixels, and you can take stills while recording video.

9.) It has built-in 32 GB of internal memory. This is a big plus for me. Memory always wins! This is a huge upgrade from my old camcorder that used tape lol! Oh, and it has an SD card slot so you can take videos ALL DAY and you wont run out of memory.

10.) Transferring files/sharing is made easy. This camcorder has wireless capabilities! If you use NFC (Sony uses it in all of its smartphones and tablets), it is easy to connect wirelessly to the camera. All you have to do is download the free PlayMemories Mobile app to connect (it also works for iOS and Android). Also, it enables real-time streaming to the Ustream service–a new feature worth exploring.


The Parent Files: First Food & Teething

These past few weeks Tristan has been teething like crazy! Four teeth are sprouting out at the same time so he is drooling and biting 24/7 and he is also super clingy (just to me). It has been quite a challenge to deal with, I’m not going to lie. Thankfully, I have my mommy friends to guide me along the way (thank you, Baby Barangay). Mommy hood is not easy, so we need all the help we can get.

That’s why I wanted to share with you one of the best online shows there is about parenting. It is called The Parent Files, and it is produced by my good friend Cat Juan-Ledesma. The entire first season is all on YouTube and http://www.indusTREE.tv so you can watch all 10 episodes in these sites. I got a lot of great advice from the show–the first season tackles issues you will encounter when taking care of babies aged 0-12 months so this has been perfect timing for a first-time mom like me.