"We travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us."
-Unknown

Monday, 6 November 2017

Washi Wednesday: Hobby Depot Haul



It all started with the idea that I needed washi holders to bring my washi with me to my upcoming travel. I already set up my traveler’s notebook in advance. Only one shop had them, so I combined my order with washi to add.


Hobby Depot offers stickers, stamps, washi and also washi holders for those antsy documenters who cannot bear to be away from their favorite washi. (Guilty.)


I also took the chance of including the camping themed outdoor seal sticker for the pages of my traveler's notebook. I already used up the bus and tent image on my TN. Hobby Depot has more stock of this, so I'm going back for more (for those hiking trips next year). 


Now I just had to have this panda washi because it's meaningful for me. I personally know someone who claims to be a panda, so it sort of became a panda obsession. 


The ticket washi adds a vintage feel to my TN pages, and it’s relevant because of the bus ride, road trip to the mountain ranges, and then the flight. I love it really. It completes the travel theme.


Finally, I cannot do without coffee. This is for my coffee-themed planner, my TN and anything that’s coffee oriented. Something tells me that I need to have an extra roll so that I won’t panic when this one runs out. I love the handpainted details on this roll. Yep, I’m going to get another one.


Hauling from Hobby Depot is easy, shop owner is quick to reply and updates with stock availability. Transaction is a breeze and I’m definitely coming back for more hauls. The shipping is also quick, it arrived just in time for me to set up my TN and bring these washis and the holder with me.

If you want to purchase washis, holders, stamps or stickers, feel free to visit Hobby Depot on Facebook anytime. There’s a lot of good stuff and pretty washi to satisfy your artsy gut. If you want some inspiration, the Instagram account can also give you that. 

A New Coffee Haus Is in Town (And It’s Right Behind Where I’m Studying LOL)



It’s funny how best friends get to observe things that otherwise we may overlook, such as a new coffee house conveniently on its soft opening at the back of the university where I’m studying. You know how coffee is an essential part of my being. This gal runs on coffee….


So while my regular lunch date C was out of town, M and I caught up over coffee in Barako Haus.  Now what makes Barako Haus interesting is that it’s the only cafĂ© that serves Civet Coffee at Php 365 per mug. Civet Coffee is one of the most expensive types of coffee in the world, and the most flavorful. Kopi luwak or civet coffee, is coffee that includes part-digested coffee cherries eaten and defecated by the Asian palm civet (Paradoxurus hermaphroditus). Yep, Barako Haus serves that for Zamboanguenos to try.


But I didn’t go there for the Civet. I needed my good old barako in my system, and I did get. I ordered the longganisa and pan de sal with scrambled eggs for my lunch. Crazy I know. Although there were pasta dishes, the mood hit for longganisa at that moment. I also had iced barako to go with it. M ordered the tuna pasta for a healthier option.


Well, the longganisa served with my pan de sal was the sweet variety, and I have to admit I’m not used to sweet longganisa, as I always have my longganisa quite savory. I enjoyed my iced barako and I’m quite satisfied to have had it with muscovado sugar to lessen my refined sugar intake. This was before my travel to take on Benguet so I was still a bit conscious with my sugar intake.



As for the price range of their food selection, I find it reasonably priced, and that dishes are mid range.There are also other desserts on display, such as yema cake, choco yema cake, ube yema cake, moist choco cake, muffins and cupcakes to satisfy those with sweet tooths.


I like that the interiors make use of elevated platforms covered in banig, or the traditional woven mats made out of dried palm leaves. It makes me feel like I’m having coffee in someone’s veranda with such comfortable materials, because banig to me always means cozy.


In totality, I’m satisfied with my barako experience in Barako Haus. The staff were friendly, coffee selection is good, place is clean and comfortable. I’ll just have to practice my indian seat the next time I go back in one of those nooks. Thankfully, it’s very accessible for quick pick-me-up between classes.

Barako Haus is in Nunez Street right behind ADZU back gate. You may visit their Facebook page here.

Thursday, 19 October 2017

Feature OAT Manila Killer Combo: Tote and Traveler's Notebook



I’ve always been curious with having a traveler’s notebook from Organize and Travel (OAT) Manila. So when they announced that they’re offering the killer combo consisting of the tote bag and traveler’s notebook, I didn’t hesitate to get it. Of course, there was a surprise free gift that came with it, plus the safe bag that I could use for when I’m not using the tote to keep it from dust and dirt.

How’s it holding on so far? Here are my thoughts on the tote and TN. Read on!


Tote Bag: Large in Black

I guess I miscalculated the size of this bag. I was actually in the market for a leather bag that I could use to work that can withstand all sorts of business-style uniforms. One facet that I’ve overlooked is that it has no zipper and it’s pretty much a carryall. So, I’ll keep on searching again in the meantime.

What’s to love:

  • Vegan leather
  • Large size can carry so much stuff
  • Very lightweight on its own 

Thoughts so far:

I’ve already used it as an extra tote for work so that I can bring my workout clothes when I do the dance dance portion in the afternoon. Sweating out is good, right? So far, it does a good job of carrying my workout shoes, extra shirt, workout pants, small towel and other stuff that I may toss in there.

Why do I love it?

It’s more stylish to carry a black vegan leather tote than a bright gym bag on wash days. Black matches everything. 


Traveler’s Notebook with Accessories in Rose Gold 

Here’s something to fall in love with, I kid you not.

Maybe because rose gold is a weakness that’s why I gave in. But nothing could have prepared me for the beauty that’s the TN. 

What’s to love:
  • Vegan leather in rose gold!
  • Side pocket for stickers, travel washi stock and other ephemera
  • Beautifully stitched
  • Comes in safe pouch
  • Handmade
  • Comes with detachable pen holder
  • Inserts are both in Plain White Paper and Brown Kraft Paper, (be still my vintage-loving heart)



Thoughts and Why I Love It:

If only it arrived earlier, I think this might be the TN that I’ll be bringing along with me for my Mountain Province escape. But I have a pretty good feeling that this TN will have its own time to shine. Just looking at that neat stitching has just assured me that it’s worth the treat, and that I’m a proud owner of a uniquely Filipino, handmade TN. 

Have you tried any of OAT Manila's products? What do you like to purchase from them? 




Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Mountain Province Travel Mood Board

I honestly can’t wait to unplug and be closer to nature. I guess it’s one of the factors that influence us every time we decide where we want to go. This year’s themes have some sort of element in them, and we have completed that immersion factor already. January, we had air at the Hot Air Balloon Festival. April we had sea as we went Whaleshark Diving. For October, it’s going to be land because where we’re headed, is all full of land as far as the eye can see but it’s still going to be a memorable experience.

Since I want to maximize the time out I’ll be having, I’ve organized a mood board for our upcoming travel. I’ve fantasized about this for quite some time now, also because it’s on C’s bucket list to experience these all. It’s kinda contagious don’t you think? 

1. Mt. Pulag- The Playground of the Gods

We’ve heard many things about Mt. Pulag both mystical and natural. It captured our curiosity, plus C’s friends have shared stories of the Playground of the Gods, I also saw some milky way shots from visitors who have been there. It’s been on C’s bucket list and I’ll be happy to put my photography skills to the test. 



2. Sagada Tour

I’m after the hanging coffins in Sagada for a photo opp and then maybe do a side trip to one of the strawberry farms in Benguet. I might meet Ifugaos as well. Who knows what else I can do in Mountain Province. I’ll definitely be happy to just drink it all in. My cameras better be ready with spare batteries! Don’t give up on me powerbank!




3. Baguio City Tour

Just like the Sagada Tour, I’ve also listed what I want to do in Baguio. That includes a visit to Mt. Cloud Bookshop, then a taste of strawberry tahu, visit the nearby attractions and then…






4. Shopping for Pasalubong and Succulents 

I know that I’m supposed to grab pasalubong with anything strawberry and ube in it. Yep, I’m a good tourist like that lol. I’d also like to get myself a little souvenir from Ibay’s Silver Shop if I’m lucky. 





5. Conrad Manila 

We will be ending our week with a stay in Conrad Manila. It’s also quite a meaningful place for C because he’s one of the engineers who have helped construct it. From roughing it, we sure can lounge around in a luxurious place such as a hotel by the bay. 





I really hope we can cross off all our items in our bucket list. Plus, I’m hoping that all goes well. We can come back with more stories to tell too. Who knows where else our feet will take us. 

I guess it's also going to be our last travel for this year before we head on out next year. We've sort of developed appreciation for looking at both ancient and modern architecture lol. We'll definitely share some more stories here as well as our hacks and itineraries. 

Washi Wednesday: Scouting for Travel Washi

It’s probably because my last quarter travel is nearing, plus almost everything is in place that’s helping to build my excitement. I really, really want to unplug and be with C already.

Nature has always been our surest way of recharging. Unplugging is what we really need right now, plus discovering new places together. And because bringing along a traveller’s journal is one of my hobbies, I’ve started setting up my upcycled, hand-painted TN from Airees Creates.

I guess C is already used to all my shenanigans every time we travel. I have a tendency to scout for art materials and linger a bit too long over the watercolours. I know it too well, that a pair of scissors are definitely not allowed in hand-carried baggage. (They have to be checked-in).

So in the name of setting up my TN and for our upcoming escape, I’ve gathered travel washi that I would definitely like to get my hands on lol.






I'm seriously thinking about getting world map washi, but who knows what else I can come across by the time I get to roam around Manila as well. That and some vintage ticket washi.

But of course, I'm not forgetting why I need to get away for a while. And I can't wait to capture anything interesting I see on camera. Wheew! I'm quietly, super excited. =)