Hello, dolls! Hello, December! I am baaaack! Our trip to Manila was nothing short of amazing. A lot of people were worried about A and I getting too exhausted because of Little A and Baby C. Honestly, it wasn’t so bad because we booked one of the best flights that can accommodate our family during this long journey to and from Baltimore.
So I took a break for two weeks and it was glorious. It wasn’t the kind of vacation that I was just excited to leave work behind but also a mental break from all the clutter in my head. It was the retreat that I needed and it was great to step back to see a clearer view of what I want to happen in 2020.
We went on a trip pretty much right after my birthday so I took it as the best birthday gift this year lol. I used to make a big deal about my birthday and plan so much. Now, I am all about relaxing and spending quality time with the people I love. I still love getting presents from my husband here and there but nothing can beat the joy I feel knowing I put more effort in securing my children’s futures and our family’s stability more than anything else.
Continue reading “Baltimore Eats: Afternoon High Tea at Lord Baltimore Hotel”
Hello,dolls! Hello, Halloween week! <3 I can finally breathe easy now because Little A and Baby C are all set for Halloween! We went to our first Halloween event at Little A’s school and I spent an hour convincing him to put on his mask. I sometimes can’t keep up with my toddler, he wore his costume at home almost every day for two weeks and refused to take off his mask during mealtime. Then all of a sudden, last night at his school’s trunk or treat event, he would not wear his mask for the life of me! Thank goodness I was able to convince him after he saw another kid wearing a spiderman costume lol.
Anyway, cold weather season is officially here and I am slowly starting to feel like hibernating! I am not a big fan of freezing out with the kids, it’s not fun when my toddler starts sniffling the day after. But who am I kidding? I have a big trip to prepare for and holiday shopping to do! With two big things coming our way before we kiss 2019 goodbye, I thought of restaurants that we went to that did not cost me $25 per plate!
Most of my friends think A and I just eat at date-worthy restaurants and spend too much when we eat out. It is a fact that we love to eat out, we did it more when we were dating since we both worked hard and food was our number 1 expense. Now that we have two kids with a toddler in private school, we are more conscious about the things we spend on. I like to have “easy dinner nights” with A and our kids once in a while — easy menu, kid-friendly, and inexpensive.
Continue reading “Baltimore Food Halls: Cheap Eats + BIG CITY MOMS GIVEAWAY”
Hello, dolls! Hello, fall!! <3 Is anyone else as ecstatic that fall is finally here? Although the hot weather this week doesn’t seem like it, everything fall is finally happening around me — pumpkin spice on everything is officially here. There is no doubt fall is my favorite season, spring WAS my favorite but after my horrible seasonal allergies this year, I think I am going to stick to fall — for a while. The perfect crisp weather, fun fall activities, and OOTDS (of course!) are some of the things I look forward to this season. This year is going to be twice the fun from the past years now that we have baby C.
The first time we went to Weber’s Farm for their fall festival, I was very overwhelmed with the crowd. Little A was 4-months-old then and I really wanted to go on the hayride but since it was the weekend, Weber’s Farm was packed. My goal this season is to finally do it — and post another blog about Weber’s Farm! :p
Continue reading “Fall Festivals In Baltimore”
Hello, dolls! Hello, labor day weekend!! <3 Anyone else excited about this long weekend? My little family is going to keep it simple this time since we are busy introducing a new routine to Little A. He is going to start school in 3 days!! Can you believe it?? We went to two parent meetings this week and I am just all about being a Mom to a preschooler now!
I remember wrapping my books with plastic covers and buying school supplies with my Mom when I was younger. Was it just me or did anyone smell their notebooks/pads before? LMAO! The “smell” totally made me feel excited for the first day of school! I want Little A to have wonderful memories like me so I am determined to make it super fun for him in my own little ways — like sending him cutesy snacks and having our own tradition on Fridays to welcome the weekend!
Anyway, it is starting to feel like fall now (well, some days!) and I am getting excited about all of the outfits I have planned for myself and my two babies! Aside from our wardrobe, I am also looking forward to all of the warm weather food we will be eating! I say…ramen every weekend! 😛
Continue reading “Baltimore Eats: Peko Peko Ramen”
Hello, dolls!! Hello, school season! <3 I know school doesn’t start for another 2 weeks but I can already sense the “back-to-school” vibe everywhere in Maryland! I honestly can’t hide my excitement anymore. Last week, A and I went to our first school-related event as parents and boy, I AM JUST LOVING IT! 😛 Truthfully, I couldn’t say I LOVED school so much, I had my fair share of I-do-not-want-to-go-to-school days and deliberately not put any effort into things that did not interest me. However, I worked extra hard on things that made me curious.
Little A and I have one full week left until we go into our new routine. I am not sure how things will be once I have a preschooler, all I know is watching him learn new things and make new friends will bring so much joy to my heart. Anyway, I am trying to make the most of what’s left of our summer break which includes eating out!
Continue reading “BALTIMORE EATS: La Food Marketa”
Hello, dolls! Hello, JUNE! What a week! With a newborn and a food festival I participated in, the first week of June felt like it just stopped by to say hello. Little A’s third birthday is fast approaching so I will be busy planning how to make him the happiest on his birthday. I am still trying to keep up with the demands of being a Mom-of-two so it’s been challenging to get any me time. So let me say hello again because it feels good to finally blog again!
One of the things I am truly grateful for during my pregnancy was having enough time to enjoy it. I was able to do pregnancy-related activities and prepare everything without feeling rushed. When I was pregnant with Little A, the only pregnancy-related activity I was able to do was to go to prenatal yoga. With baby C, I was able to attend a couple of baby events which helped me understand my journey as a Mother even more — one of which, the first Baltimore Birth Festival last month (May 19,2019).
Continue reading “BALTIMORE BIRTH FESTIVAL 2019”
Hello, dolls! Hello, Easter weekend! <3 I know this week has been pretty mellow for most of us but I hope everyone had a chance to reflect on what the true meaning of Easter is! 🙂 Holy week makes me miss the Philippines more because of all the things my family and I used to do especially Visita Iglesia. It gets really crowded and hot but my siblings and I did not mind it at all because we knew it would make our parents happy and do something that can strengthen our faith. It was never really about going on a vacation or easter eggs for our family, so I feel like both little A and I are learning how Easter is being spent here in the US.
I am now 35 weeks pregnant and I can’t believe our baby girl is going to be here in about a month! This week was my first week working fewer days cause I am mentally and physically starting to breakdown so I know it’s time to focus on myself and my growing family. It’s already helping me a lot because I am able to work on being strong for childbirth, get things ready for baby girl, and spend more time with little A before he enters the world of sharing Mommy, Daddy, and everything else.
Continue reading “Baby’s First Easter”
Hello, dolls! Hello, weekend <3 I know it’s unlikely that I am going to share a post about our summer picnic when my neighborhood is completely covered in snow. Baby # 2 is due in May, a month before baby A’s birthday. so I know our summer 2019 is going to be eventful! I am trying to line up some family activities that I would like us to do and one of which is to go on a picnic! I love picnic dates!! The food, setting up our mat, and escaping reality for a while. When A and I went on a picnic date for the first time I knew it was something that we should do every year — it’s a great way to disconnect and talk about things because you are in that beautiful moment! 😛
I honestly don’t know how I am going to be during my maternity leave. When A was born, my entire family was here so I was able to cope with postpartum pretty easily. The activities that we did helped me so much and the fact that I had a “team” to support me with anything 24/7 meant so much. Since I will have fewer hands this time, I am not sure how I will fare with a 3-year-old and a newborn, so what is my mantra for this summer? Take my time, live in the moment, and survive!! LOL
Continue reading “Family Picnic”
Hello, dolls! Hello, October!!! Vacation month, finally! <3 This felt like the longest week ever!! From a long-awaited answer, two weeks that I can look forward to, and a reminder to make an effort for the people we love every day. A and I went on a date night to celebrate his birthday and I can’t wait to share about our memorable evening soon here!
On an unrelated note, my family is starting to plan their “Christmas break” here. This is the third time that we will all be complete in the United States, it’s definitely one of the biggest things I look forward to every year! I was lucky to be on my maternity leave the first time they all came to visit. We were able to go on adventures every day. It’s not easy to plan a vacation for a family of 7 (and a newborn) because I had to think about baby A. Lucky for me, my siblings are very laid back! They just want to eat and shop 😛
Here are a couple of things you can do when your family is visiting the US.
Once upon a time, I joined Wasabi’s online photo contest and won a $100 gift card. I kept it for 4 years because I prayed that one day, I can use it with my family — and so we did. Continue reading “WASABI at TYSONS CORNER”
Hello, dolls! Hello, Sunday! <3 It’s been a pretty slow week for me. The weather has been so lovely and it makes me want to stay in bed all day. I am ending September feeling so unproductive because of how I chose to “relax” this past week. I should really shake this feeling off and look back to all of the awesome opportunities I was able to be part of this month. I mean really! Going to NYC with my BFF, 3 confirmed collaborations for next month, and I started packing for our trip! Yes — cause I have to pack for us 3 and I don’t want to get super stressed about it the week before our departure so I am starting early! So yeah, I guess this slowness will die down as I fully transition to this new season 😛
It is very uncommon to take your newborn out until h/she is (n) weeks old — I honestly don’t know what’s the “standard age” now because I did not want to stress myself out by being too careful and forget to enjoy the journey of being a new Mom. Anyway, would you Mom shame me if I tell you I took baby A to the mall before he was a week old? We spent merely 2 hours there because I had to feed him — I just need to get out of the house.
He was about 2 weeks old when we took him on his first real adventure. My brothers just arrived from the Philippines, I was on my maternity leave, and A was off. I couldn’t let a good day get wasted! Our first blueberry experience was so fun that my sister and I agreed to take our family to Shaw Orchards when they visit. Continue reading “Blueberry Picking at Shaw Orchards”
Hello, dolls!! Hello, weekend!! <3 I am going to take a little break from Chicago posts and share with you something that filled my heart and tummy with so much joy this past Friday. I mostly share my food adventures here on my blog. Though I really intend for this to be a lifestyle blog it’s really hard to separate myself from food because it’s the core of my being. So if you can notice, whenever I post an entry, there’s always food involved. I’ve been going through my previous posts (like from 7 years ago) and it makes me laugh how brutally honest I was. I was a single girl who will not take anything less than what I paid for. Then A came along, we went to the best restaurants so my food posts became more positive. — still honest, but much lighter since I was writing about better restaurants 😛 Just like Urban Plates
A and I are always on the hunt for restaurants that we can take our family to when visiting us. The downside of taking my entire family to a restaurant is having to deal with 7 people trying to figure out what they want. I get stressed out whenever it’s time for us to order because I feel like half of us are always struggling to decide what to eat. When I learned about the concept of Urban Plates I knew it was going to be perfect not only for my tiny tribe but also to the rest of our family when we are complete in December.
I am so excited to share an experience that only happened 2 days ago! I am still trying to keep up with my adventures from 2 years ago so taking a break and sharing something current is like a dream to me! lol
Continue reading “Urban Plates, Columbia MD”
Hello,dolls!! Hello, February! <3 Before I start my entry…let me just say how This Is Us (a remarkable US TV show) has been crushing my soul with every episode. I spent the day after the “Superbowl” episode looking at IG stories so I could spoil it for myself. YUP! I know I wouldn’t be able to handle it so I wanted to prepare myself. But just like everyone else that bawled their eyes out, Jack Pearson stole my heart and left it bleeding!! I have yet to watch the episode last night, and I am not sure if I am ready for another heavy episode! Lucky for me, I was able to convince A to hold my hand as I watch Jack be the best husband and Dad that he is when I watched episode 14 of season 2 aka Superbowl (AKA THE SADDEST EPISODE ON TV EVER!!! next to McDreamy’s of course).
Okay..so now that my “This Is Us” thoughts are out, let me move on to my real topic. I know we are still a couple of months away from summer, but it’s never too early to plan for it. One of the things that I love to do is blueberry picking.
When my sister lived here for over a year, I made sure that our Mondays will be filled with adventures. One of my favorite trips with her was when we went blueberry and cherry picking.
My friends know that anything that involves stepping on grass is something that I am not fond of. BUT if it’s food related, I would definitely give it a go! Like fruit picking or winery tours! lol Continue reading “BLUEBERRY PICKING AT SHAW ORCHARDS”
Hello, dolls!!! 🙂 Aaaah finally!!! I am sorry for being MIA for a week. Being in Manila means dealing with poor service. For the past 2 weeks A and I have had our fair share of annoying stories about being taken advantage of government officials/ traffic enforcers and having no internet for a week (just because PLDT decided to do maintenance i the area FOR A WEEK!). So it has been a busy 2 weeks, I’ve always dreamed of being a hands on bride, but gaaah I never thought it would be this challenging (not that I am complaining). I am kind of getting frustrated about not documenting most of the things that has been happening since I’ve been home. I don’t know why but maybe it’s the fact that I have been so worried about being so bloated/swollen because of the sudden change of weather (from 18 degrees to 97!). My ring finger is having an allergic reaction to the hot weather that I am so afraid my rings won’t fit next week! #StoryOfMyLife. Nonetheless, I feel like we are pretty much ready to say I do…suppliers are picked out and all I need is for my guests to RSVP! Haha So as I mentioned above, I failed to document everything, so let me share some throwbacks for you that shows how my life has been like for the past 2 weeks.
Greek Easter: Greek Easter was this past Sunday. We missed it this year and aaah I was dreaming about Greek food all day!
Thinking about Greek Easter reminded me of the Greek Festival last year.
it was a Friday and luckily both A and I got the night off. So we invited this little egg tart to join us
Continue reading “Almost..I do.”
10.07.14: Happy Birthday, Love!
Hello, dolls! 🙂 Happy #ThrowbackThursday. One shift left and we will be on vacation mode…or should I say wedding mode! haha. It’s funny how I find it a bit sad that we are going to be away from Baltimore for more than a month, I mean isn’t that weird? I’ve always loved the thought that I get to be home every year. Being here for 3 years, I still managed to never miss a year in the Philippines, for some reason I get blessed with opportunities to come home. For 3 years, I have learned to love this place and call it my home. So I guess #SepAnx is slowly kicking in..
So before we leave for the Philippines,and start get extremely busy for the wedding, let me share with you how we celebrated A’s birthday last year.
A’s birthday fell on a beautiful Sunday. Unfortunately, he had to work all day, but was able to convince him to let him come in at noon so we can have brunch together.
Surprising each other is challenging for A and I. How do you surprise someone that you are with everyday? Continue reading “Happy 27th, A!”
Hello, dolls!!! 🙂 Happy Saturday!!! We just welcomed spring yesterday and aaah I am so happy.It was a snowy first day of spring but whatevs, I know my beloved warmer days are here. Only a month left until I say I do and gahd I don’t think I can hide my excitement anymore!!! Today is the last Satruday that I will be stressing about working a double (not that I am complaining). I am looking forward to my weekend with A next week! It’s been almost 8 months since we had a full weekend together with nothing to worry about. For all the important things that we have to deal with for our careers, needless to say 2 weeks before our flight to Manila, I think we really deserve a weekend with just the two of us.
Only one week left…and I can embrace freedooooom!
The past 2 weeks has been really challenging for A and I. I think I am now at the point where in I feel like I have exceeded my limit when it comes to decision making…like I do not know if I have something hiding inside my head that can help alleviate the situation. Aaaaah… grown up problems are hard! haha
So now, let me share with you something that made me love being a bride-to-be more — the wedding registry! Continue reading “Wedding Diaries: Bridal Registry I”
08.24-25.14: Of weekend getaways
Hello, dolls! 🙂 Happy hump day! Aaaah what a beautiful “weekend” it has been. Usually, I would be bummed that our almost 3 day weekend is now over. But since I know that we only have 9 days left until we begin our journey to forever, I don’t think there is room for me to complain. We are getting close!!! We will be home in less than 2 weeks! Which reminds me of the time I went home for my Dad’s 50th birthday, back when it would take me more than a day to travel to the Philippines. The flight alone is already exhausting, the layover and waiting makes it even more draining so I like to have at least a whole day where in I do not have to worry about anything including packing before my loooong flight — that’s why A and I likes to schedule our trips from Baltimore after on or after Monday.
A and I 12 hours before my flight to Manila last year..brought back a lot of memories when I left Baltimore 2 years ago to go home.
Love waking up to this!!! Continue reading “Almost There”
Hello, dolls!!! 🙂 Happy Sunday!!! Aaaah what a great Sunday. So how do I begin about my amazing day? Daylight savings — it means two things for me, first – it won’t be dark at 5PM anymore, second – my parents will not be confused about calculating the time difference anymore. I woke up today feeling like a I ran a marathon for 12 hours yesterday, I was crazy exhausted! Saturdays at work now is the busiest.I got out of bed pretty late, I was exhausted and instead of hating myself for it I talked to my sister, cause who else could make me feel better about feeling a little irresponsible? haha. One of the things that I looked forward to today is my date with Lovely, which was of course, amazing.
** So obviously, I was not able to publish this on Sunday so maybe today we can pretend that it’s still Sunday haha
In the perfect world,my Sundays will be welcomed with a delicious brunch after mass with family. A little quality time with friends in between dinner and having deep conversations with the people I love.
aaah, brunch. I love brunch way too much.
A and I fell in love with the orange limeade that we had at the Farmer’s Market.
Thanks to my amazing Mom-in-Law, she bought us a citrus juicer so we can make our orange limeade anytime 😉
Read about my first orange limeade experience here https://riannagalvez.com/2015/01/07/summer-14-farmers-market/ Continue reading “Mimosa and Orange Limeade”
08.11.2014: Welcoming Change
Hello, dolls!!! 🙂 Happy hump day! I woke up today with a weird feeling about today. I’ve been telling A how we have to embrace change if we want to grow. Although it hurts to move on from some of the things that we learned to appreciate, we have to leave room for better and bigger things. So I told myself that I can’t have a weird mood all day, so I claimed that we will receive good news before the day ends, and we did!!! A and I just looked at each other with utter amazement after that phone call that we received 5 min before we left our apartment. It’s a blessing right in front of our face, and all I can say is…great things happen those who believe in Him 🙂
I love how this week started, each of us received good news and boy are we excited!!! So anyway, here’s a post that will surely help me stay warm tonight. Cause you know….thinking about summer helps me forget about the cold weather…even for just a while 😉
aside from wearing light clothes….
I also miss the abundance of fresh produce during summer. Continue reading “Summer Never Ends”
08.06.14: Annapolis Run
Hello, dolls!!! Happy #ThrowbackThursday —- the day when it’s (quite) acceptable for me to post my overdue entries.
We are at the hype of winter. It has been snowing every other day and so far I’ve been going out with at least 4 layers of clothing. I have a love-hate relationship with March. I want it to end soon because of the cold weather, but on the other hand I kind of want it to slow down because I NEED to accomplish a lot of things this month. I feel bad for A because I am a riot right now, I find myself talking about different topics at once, and doing numerous things everyday that we can’t keep to each other anymore — or at least that’s how I feel.
Oh time…please be good to me.
With all the craziness that’s been happening in our lives now. A and I would see to it that we make time to just sit down,eat, and not worry about anything. We also make sure that we see friends once in a while.
Our hungry stomachs brought us to Annapolis, since we were already going to be at the area we called Frances so we can all have lunch together with out little egg tart. Continue reading “49 West”
Hello, sweets! Whew what a cold snowy week this is! It’s one snow day to another, I guess I will be waking up to the sight of snow on our porch until the end of the week 😐 Uhhh we are just so over with winter…I am seriously counting the days until it’s spring again. This cold weather (and crazy schedule) is making me eat every chocolate that I see, being surrounded with tons of chocolate here at home and at work is not helping my “bride” diet!!! (although let’s face, I have not really payed attention to my diet since December) — I just like to say it para I’ll sound like a legit bride-to-be hahaha
One of the best things about my relationship with A is our cookbook collection.
We both had a good number of books before we met each other, and our collection started growing in 2012 because we would often give each other books on special occasions. Now that we are engaged, we now call all of our books “ours”, which makes me so happy because it has always been a dream of mine to own all the great cookbooks out there.
An exceptional day is when you cross off 3 books from our wishlist.
…and celebrate with Asian food! 🙂 Continue reading “Korean Spa and Everything In Between”