March 31, 2013

Lenten Church Pilgrimage 2013

28 March 2013 - Maundy Thursday
Laguna, Philippines

Together with my friends in the CFC Singles for Christ, we went for a church pilgrimage. We visited 7 churches in the Province of Laguna. Sadly, our 14 churches did not push thru due to time constraint and I also suggested that we will not take the inner towns for our safety. Safety in the sense that: one of our drivers is not at good night and provincial driving and; all of us don't know the way, we all just relied to the directions locals give. But in general, we all are satisfied and enjoyed our trip. Here's the story.


Some of my friends planned of this trip about weeks before the Holy Week. I was hesitant that time to join but on the eve of the trip, I eagerly asked the details and joined. After some problems on the vehicles to be used, there was one who joined and volunteered his car thus we now had 2 cars with 5 pax each. We met at the meeting place at 5am and left after 30 minutes. Gas up to full tank, offered our prayers and water bottle handy and we are all prepared to go. Both cars fetched one passenger and went to the next meeting place, a gas station along South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) to gather up (roll call) and breakfast. On this time, we are now a total of  3 cars with 5-4-2pax respectively and another car with 2pax on the way.

The Itinerary (the Visita Iglesia):

The original plan was to travel to 14 churches. Our main guide who made the itinerary handed out maps and all towns to be visited are numbered. It's a fact that this day is an Exodus to Filipinos - to go home, to visit family afar, to have a vacation and also many like us will visit churches. In short, we arrived at Calamba Exit in about 1 hour from the 2nd pit stop then heavy traffic along the town of Los Baños, after that we proceeded smoothly until our first destination, the church in the town of Pila. BTW, before we go on, one of the rules of the church that "to cover all images (statues) during Lent" thus the altars pictured herein have covers in the altar. On each church, we will recite the two "stations of the Cross" so that we can complete it after 7 churches.

Pila Laguna - Facade
St. Anthony of Padua Chruch, Pila, Laguna

Pila Laguna - Altar

After here we went to the Town of Magadalena. Going there, based on the map is just left of Pila, but we are wrong, we need to pass thru towns of Sta. Cruz and Pagsanjan just to be in Magadalena. Just the we realized that it this town is considered inner part of the province.

Magdalena Laguna - Facade
St. Mary Magdalene Church, Magdalena, Laguna

Magdalena Laguna - Altar

Our next stop was Sta. Cruz Chruch, in Sta. Cruz town and we need to go back on the same route. We are hungry at that time since it was about past 1pm. I just said to them that "since Sta. Cruz is the capital town, we'll just look for a food joint there". So up we go, right turned on a junction in Sta. Cruz then at last we seen the church first before the food joint.

Sta Cruz Laguna - Facade
Immaculate Concepcion Church, Santa Cruz, Laguna

Sta Cruz Laguna - Altar

The 4th car arrived too and so we visited the church first then walked to look for a place to have lunch then on the road again.

We proceeded to the most farthest part of the province (according to our map) and it was far all right but the scenery is breath taking specially looking at the Laguna de Bay and the rice fields. We arrived at Mabitac town and we waited to our companions on 2 cars but sadly, they were off shoot by 9Kms (as they shared) so waited for them in the church. We endured the 126 steps staircase going to the church from the town hall. The steps took our breaths but the view on top is more breathtaking. When they arrived, they shared their 'misadventures' and continued our station of the cross.

Mabitac Laguna - Facade
Nuestra Señora de Candelaria (Our Lady of Candles), Mabitac, Laguna

Mabitac Laguna - Altar

WikiPilipinas.Org said:
Our Lady Of Candelaria Church was first located along the banks of Laguna de Bay. The presnt church was established in 1611 but was badly damaged by an earthquake, repaired by Fr. Antonio de la Fuente and damaged again by an earthquake on August 20, 1937. It located on top of Kalbaryo Hill. It can be reached by climbing 126 steps. It houses the image of Nuestra Señora de Candelaria. a mural is placed on the other side of the church in observance of the victory of the Filipinos during Philippine-American War.

After the rituals, our main guide ask for a consensus: 1) to go up taking Laguna-Rizal road until Antipolo City (Rizal Province) or 2) stick to the plan but take 7 towns instead of 11 (according to map) or 14 (total target). I said that we will take the second option since its getting dark and for our safety we will not take inner towns and the Laguna-Rizal Road (which they call the backdoor of SLEX) since its we all not know the route. We only have a map of Laguna as reference. So they agreed to my suggestion so we all go back to the same route and take one town at a time. After Mabitac, we skipped the few towns then arrived at Pakil.

Pakil Laguna - Facade
San Pedro Alcantara, Pakil, Laguna

Pakil Laguna - Altar

Wow! this church has many images of saints in their cart - we locally call it Karosa. Almost half of the church was dedicated to the images and the next half was for the pews. We arrived in the middle of the mass and Benediction. According to the priest, we - the Catholic faithful - must not do the stations of the cross during the pilgrimage. The Pilgrimage, he added, or the 'Visita Iglesia' taken from the word 'Visita' meaning to visit, must be dedicated to visit the Church and Christ Himself present in the Repository. Our main guide approached me and whispered to me that since we already recited the station of the cross, we might as well finish it. I agreed to her since it was also what I'm thinking. We just simply continued our rituals, so thus the other faithfuls. After a few more minutes, we went to our next stop, Paete Church.

Going to Paete Church was a trial. We went back and forth the highway because of road blockade for the processions. After some ins and outs, we made it to the designated parking space and walked towards the church. I seen a church on my right but one of my companions said to the left and seen that on the left is more old thus we went there.

Paete Laguna - Facade
St. James the Apostle Church, Paete, Laguna

Paete Laguna - Altar

We then head back to our respective cars and went to our last destination, the Chruch in Lumban. After zigzaging inside a residential area, we finally seen the church.

Lumban Laguna - Facade
St. Sebastian the Martyr Church, Lumban, Laguna

Lumban Laguna - Altar

After our visit, we asked a local on how to go back to the highway and Calamba. After his instructions, we all now on the road to Calamba City. Ate our super late dinner (at round 10pm) and then we prayed for thanksgiving and for guidance to home. We again grouped before the SLEX entry to assure no one will overshoot then all zoom out towards SLEX then to our respective homes.

Final Words:

I do believe that the Visita Iglesia really work miracles and blessings. I should know because everytime I do this, a special blessing comes to me in a form of answered prayer. We do have trials in life and there is only one way for these trails be solved and that is "to call out HIS name".

Thank you so much my SFC NA1E brethren. Thank you for letting me join this trip and praying with you is the most amazing gift i can have right now. Thank you and until next time.

Photos herein is captured using
Canon Powershot SX130is in
Laguna, Philippines
last 28th of March 2013


March 26, 2013

Cebu Pacific Air RP-C3244

Cebu Pacific Air


Airline: Cebu Pacific Air
Aircraft: Airbus A320-214
Registration #: RP-C3244
Serial # / Construction #: MSN 3272
First Flight: 18-09-2007
Test Registration: F-WWBZ
Delivery Date: 19-10-2007

First Class Seats (F) : none
Business Class Seats (C): none
Economy Class Seats (Y): 179

Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 2 (IATA = MNL; ICAO = RPLL)
Manila, Philippines


Canon Powershot A580

Photo Date and Time:
26 August 2008 2:46pm (GMT +8)

Information Source:,RP-C3244-CEBU-Pacific-Air.php

March 25, 2013

Everyday Creations with Mega Creations Premium Sardines

21 March 2013
Manila Diamond Hotel
Ermita, Manila

If we say sardines, we only serve it in one of these ways:

  • Strait from the can;
  • Heat it from the can - which is by the way not good due to the poisonous reaction of heat and lead and tin of the can;
  • Heat it in a pan - which is better than the previous;
  • Sauté it with garlic and onions with its own sauce;
  • The previous plus more water (one to two cans full);
  • The previous plus julienned cabbage.

The last way is my favorite, especially if the sardine is in "hot and spicy tomato sauce" or in "Spanish style in oil" variants. To make it short, we only serve sardines in that kind of style again and again. What if I’ll say we can make it more uplifted to the gourmet level to make sardines more extraordinary.  That’s the mission of Mega Creations Sardines, to bring us gourmet foods using sardines thus they created "Everyday Creations with Mega Creations Sardines.

Mega Creations Sardines has two variants: Mega Creations Sardines in Natural Oil and; the hotter version Mega Creations Sardines in Spanish Style.

Mega Sardines

Mega Creations Sardines in partnership with Chef Greg Villalon and Lifestyle Asia will bring us "Everyday Creations" TV show. Its a cooking show that will showcase whip up dishes of Chef Greg Villalon using Mega Creations Sardines as a main ingredient.

Mega Sardines - Chef Greg Villalon

Here are some of the sample dishes that he demonstrated to us and all of these will be featured in the show:

Asian Style Sub Sandwich

Mega Sardines - Asian Sub Sandwich

He mixed mashed sardines in oil and hoisin sauce and set it aside. He sautéed button mushrooms until fragrant and set it aside to let it cool down. He spread mayo on both sides of the bun, then he layered mushrooms, sardine mixture and sliced cucumber.

Moroccan Sardine and Sweet Potato Casserole

Mega Sardines - Morrocan Casserole

He sautéed olive oil, onions, red bell peppers, raisins and spinach. Seasoned it turmeric powder, cumin, cinnamon, tomato paste and the mashed up sardines. set it aside to cool down a bit. he made a mashed sweet potato seasoned with milk, salt and pepper. he then also created a crust which is a mixture of bread crumbs, butter, cheddar cheese and olive oil. To assemble, he layered sweet potato, then sardine mixture twice then topped it with the crust mixture, put it on a oven at 400F for 15 minutes or until crust is golden brown.

Sardine and Cilantro Pesto Pasta

Mega Sardines - Pesto Sardine Pasta

For this dish, he let it be done in a cook off. I’m proud to say that the cook off was between me and a lady from Lifestyle Asia.

As for the recipe for this dish, let’s make the cilantro pesto first by mixing cilantro, peanuts, calamansi juice and olive oil, salt and pepper to taste in a food processor. Puree it until desired consistency. In the cook off by the way, the pesto was ready made so it’s a bit easier for us.

The we will sauté olive oil, onions, mushrooms, bell peppers, pesto, and white wine, add the sardines and cooked pasta, then it’s ready to serve.

for more unique easy-to make recipes, log on to My Everyday Creations Facebook page at

To tease you, they will create burgers, pizza and spring rolls.

Mega Sardines - Everyday Creations

Everyday Creations will start airing on April 5 at 6:30pm on the Lifestyle Network and it will air every Friday 6:30pm thereafter and with replays on Sundays 11:30am and Wednesdays at 6:00pm

March 24, 2013

TGI Fridays' Thursdays Red Card

This first week of April, be sure to dine at TGI Fridays to get this card absolutely free. This card entitles us to have a Buy 1 Take 1 Cocktail every Thursdays until June 30, 2013.

TGIFridays - Red Card

This card will definitely a must to every "life of the party", "bar person" or just a simple you who wants to be refreshed in this summer heat. In addition to that, TGI Fridays haw a new Bar Menu.

Don't forget, dine at TGI Fridays starting April and get this TGI Fridays Red Card. You might even catch the "Stars behind the Bar" tour on your next visit when you avail this promo.

TGI Fridays Launches "Stars Behind the Bar"

21 March 2013
TGI Fridays
Bonifacio High Street
Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City, Philippines

Every Thursdays and Fridays will heat up but don't worry, the "Stars behind the Bar" will flow you your favorite drinks to dose off that summer heat.

TGIFridays - Stars behind the Bar

"Stars behind the Bar" is TGI Fridays' top brass bartender from different branches will show of their bartending skills and showmanship of flaring, flips and tricks. Happens every Thursdays and Fridays on nine location branches as scheduled:
  • Bonifacio High Street (Quadrant B3, Bonifacio High Street, Taguig City) : Mar 21; Apr 11 & 25 and; May 9
  • Glorietta (3/f Glorietta 3, Makati City) : Mar 22; Apr 12 & 26 and; May 10.
  • Mall of Asia (North Wing Entertainment Mall, Mall of Asia, Pasay City) : Apr 4 and May 16.
  • Eastwood (G/f Citywalk 1, Bagumbayan, Quezon City) : Apr 5 and May 17.
  • TriNoMa (Level 4, Trinoma Park, Quezon City) : Apr 14 and May 4.
  • Manila (G/f, Robinsons Place, Perdo Gil Street, Ermita, Manila) : Apr 18 and May 23.
  • Alabang Town Center (Level 2, Alabang Town Center, Muntinlupa City) : Apr 19 and May 24.
  • Tomas Morato (G/f, Hotel Rembrandt, Tomas Morato Extension, Quezon City) : May 2 and 30.
  • Galleria (Level 2 East Wing Robinsons Galleria, Quezon City) : May 3 and 31.
TGIFridays - bartender
Bartender doing his "Fire" Flair
Stars behind the Bar is in partnership with Stolichnaya Vodka. Stolichnaya - aka Stoli - comes in Premium Vodka and other flavored varieties like : Raspberry, Blueberry, Wild Cherry, Citrus, Orange and Pomegranate.

TGIFridays - Stoli

March 23, 2013

Cebu Pacific Air RP-C3242

Cebu Pacific Air


Airline: Cebu Pacific Air
Aircraft: Airbus A320-214
Registration #: RP-C3242
Serial # / Construction #: MSN 2994
First Flight: 12-12-2006
Test Registration: F-WWIU
Delivery Date: 15-01-2007

First Class Seats (F) : none
Business Class Seats (C): none
Economy Class Seats (Y): 179

Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 2 (IATA = MNL; ICAO = RPLL)
Manila, Philippines


Canon Powershot A580

Photo Date and Time:
26 August 2008 12:58pm (GMT +8)

Information Source:,RP-C3242-CEBU-Pacific-Air.php

March 21, 2013

"NEWEL" Rags 2 Riches Spring/Summer Collection 2013

19 March 2013
The Gallery, Greenbelt 5,
Makati City, Philippines

Rags 2 Riches launches it Spring/Summer Collection 2013 named "Newel" (n. weave in T'boli - a Philippine Tribe).

Rags2Riches Newel - Models

The rag weavers of Payatas (the biggest dump site in the Philippines) produce doormats for a living and they only earn a little. Then Philippine Fashion Icons and Designers asked the weavers to weave for them and the said designers infused it in their works thus it became Rugs 2 Riches. Now the said rug weavers are now artisans and now earns big. The lowly doormat is now part of high-end fashion material.

Rags2Riches Newel - Artisans
Rags2Riches Newel - Artisans
For this Collection, each Bag fuses artisanal weave (the rag) and a T'boli hand woven cloth called "T'nalak". To get more information about the bag, click their respective captions and it will lead you to Rags 2 Riches website (

Rags2Riches Newel - Benwu and Kena Tote
Rags2Riches Newel - Benwu Tote (big) and Kena Tote Bag (small)

The said launch also introduces Ms. Bianca Gonzalez as the first Rags 2 Riches (R2R) Style Advocate for this collection. It was also R2R's first collection without tagging its designer's name which was Mr. Rajo Laurel

Rags2Riches Newel - people
(L-R) the Emcee; Ms. Bianca Gonzalez; R2R CEO; and Mr. Rajo Laurel

# # # # #

Website :
e-mail :
Facebook : Rags2Riches, Inc.
Twitter : @R2REcostyle

Alpenliebe is now in the Philippines...

...and its about more than a month now.

We Filipinos loves only two things on candies, its whether sweet or mentholated or even both. Perfetti Van Melle (makers of beloved candies like Mentos, Chupa Chups, and Fruittella) brings a new brand of candies that we will all love, the Alpenliebe.


It comes in two different flavors: Caramel and; Strawberry. Both flavors have a mix of milk thus it creates a creamy goodness in the mouth. Alpenliebe Strawberry is like strawberry milkshake and Alpenliebe Caramel is like sweetened milk. It comes in a 50 piece bag good for sharing and for those bore-some meetings or long travels.

Alpenliebe is Perfetti Van Melle’s first milk-based deposited candy which was launched in Italy in 1984. Alpenliebe is manufactured by Perfetti Van Melle, the same company that has brought Mentos, Chupa Chups, Fruittella, and Smint. Perfetti Van Melle is the third largest confectionery manufacturer in the world and distributes its products in over 130 countries worldwide, including the Philippines.

March 20, 2013

Cebu Pacific Air RP-C3241

Cebu Pacific Air


Airline: Cebu Pacific Air
Aircraft: Airbus A320-214
Registration #: RP-C3241
Serial # / Construction #: MSN 2439
First Flight: 26-04-2005
Test Registration: F-WWBO
Delivery Date: 05-07-2006

First Class Seats (F) : none
Business Class Seats (C): none
Economy Class Seats (Y): 179

Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 2 (IATA = MNL; ICAO = RPLL)
Manila, Philippines

Withdrawn from use as of 14-04-2012;
Retured to the Leasing Company 19-06-2012;
Became VP-BHX of Yamal Airlines as of 14-09-2012

Canon Powershot A580

Photo Date and Time:
26 August 2008 01:56pm (GMT +8)

Information Source:,VP-BHX-Yamal-Airlines.php

March 19, 2013

Sumo Sam opens a new branch in SM City Manila

14 March 2013
Sumo Sam
4/f SM City Manila

The Place:

Sumo Sam, the fastest growing Japanese Cuisine Restaurant opened its new branch located at the 4/f SM City Manila - just beside Cinema 1.

sumo sam at sm city manila

sumo sam at sm city manila
Dinning Hall

sumo sam at sm city manila
Table Setting for 3

At first I thought that the place was a bit small for their big clientele but I was wrong, It can accommodate about 50 people. The place is clean, the staff is friendly, the ambiance for me is like being in a traditional Japanese house.

sumo sam at sm city manila
Friendly Staff ready to serve

The Food:

These dishes will definitely feast on your taste buds. A bit pricey but still all worth it.

Sumo Sam Green Iced Tea
Sumo Sam Green Ice Tea (also available in Red)

This Iced Tea even colored it doesn't taste like cough syrup, it is very refreshing.

Sumo Sam Salmon Sashimi
Sumo Sam Salmon Sashimi

My first reason why I do love Japanese food. The fish is not fishy - in taste and smell - at all and it becomes sweet when dip in lemon-soy sauce-wasabe sauce.

Sumo Sam Ebi Tempura
Sumo Sam Ebi Tempura

Crunchy and big bites so open wide.

Sumo Sam Dynamite Roll
Sumo Sam Dynamite Roll

From the name itself, its a bit spicy and it will be stronger if you dip it on its accompanied special sauce. Again, I love that salmon cubes on top which is also a bit spicy.

Sumo Sam California Roll
Sumo Sam California Roll

I don't like Cali Maki but I like Sumo Sam's version. It also comes with good toppings of salmon slices and mayo embellished with lettuce.

Sumo Sam Las Vegas Roll
Sumo Sam Las Vegas Roll

I don't get why it was named as such but yes, it is yummy.

Sumo Sam Pride Salad
Sumo Sam Pride Salad

Lettuce and shrimps are good for each other. Its really the pride of Sumo Sam.

Sumo Sam Bacon Dory
Sumo Sam Bacon Dory

I like Bacon and I like Dory and putting it together is double like!

Sumo Sam Beef Teppan
Sumo Sam Beef Teppan

My another reason why I love Japanese food. Beef is tender and not chewy.

Sumo Sam Spicy Tuna Salad
Sumo Sam Spicy Tuna Salad

This is the BEST! Tuna cubes hugged by creamy spicy hot goodness laid down in the bed of lettuce blanketed with crunch bits which tasted like chicharon or shrimp chips.


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