Cusina Home introduces a Natural and Safe Dishwashing Liquid

Since having a child, my main concern is cleanliness at home. Especially with dishes, because this is the most used item at home on an everyday basis.

So I only choose natural products, as much as I can, for washing my dishes. And I am very meticulous with the smell, its effectivity in cleaning, and how much it can wash.

Friends from Cusina Home dropped by the Brotzeit workshop to give samples of the product. At first look,  the products were like concentrated juices?

And they come in interesting scents:

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I have been using the Ginger Yuzu Peel and so far, I am liking it. I like it because:

1. Just one drop in the sponge and it generates enough bubbles.
2. Just have to water the sponge some more and more bubbles appear.
3. It smells oh so good!
4. It rinses easily and squeaky clean.
5. I am assured that my dishes are safe because it’s made of natural ingredients, from fruit and plant extracts.

I am one who is very particular of my dishes, especially for my little one, who is eating by herself and preparing her food by herself at times. So clean dishes equal clean food for the family.

You may purchase Cusina Dishwashing Liquid in leading supermarkets. Visit www.cusinahome.com.

Brotzeit Junior Chef@Work with Mommy Bloggers Philippines

Summer is synonymous to workshops.

This summer alone, my little learner is taking ballet, just finished swimming, and taking day workshops, like this recent one we attended in Brotzeit Shangrila Plaza.

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We were welcomed with this banner.
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Kinder Koche für den Tag! Kid Chef for the day. I miss speaking auf Deutsch!

And I missed Germany because of the overall feel of the restaurant.

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Typical German Bier Bar. They serve Bavarian Cuisine. Oh yes, Munich.

Since it’s all about brot, or bread, I assume the kids were making bread. And they did. For starters, they made Brezn, or Pretzel. I let my little one work her way by herself, they had great instructors led by Chef Ivan.

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My daughter did the entire process herself–from putting ingredients together, mixing the dough, rolling, shaping the Brezn.

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From the oven to her mouth, these Cheese Brezn or Pretzels looked and tasted good. Lekker!
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The “Graduates” with Chef Ivan. Great job, MBP kids!

The kids had loot bags from one of the sponsors, Toy Kingdom.

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Mommies had our own loot, too, from Cusina Home. Watch out my review of this product, my new household dishwashing buddy!

 

The workshop was great exercise for the kids to acquire kitchen skills. It also taught them how to focus, following instructions, reading ingredients, waiting, keeping the workstation and their hands clean when preparing food. I must say, my kid learned a lot in this short time, and applied these skills at home (we both love baking!).

You can still have your kids experience this in Brotzeit, all Saturdays of May!

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Vielen Dank, Brotzeit!

~ Touringkitty

 

#KoristaAko: Acapellago

Singing in harmony is second nature to Filipinos. Admittedly, when a melody is heard, we (secretly) hum a second voice into it.

And with the advent of a cappella singing in movies and TV (think Glee and Pitch Perfect), and competitions like Akapela Open, more Filipinos are getting hooked in a cappella music. Which positively translates to more a cappella singers and choristers (happy dance there!).

A product of Akapela Open is our featured koristas for this month. Acapellago (see the play name between a cappella and archipelago? Cool, right?) is an award-winning ensemble of five singers who does covers of popular songs in a cappella fashion. They have competed and won locally (beginning with a local town competition and then in Akapela Open) and internationally, getting the top prize in the A Cappella Championships in Singapore just last year. Because of this accolade, they were awarded an Ani ng Dangal, given by the National Commission for Culture and the Arts.

They started their vocal group in school, with members of the Bulacan State University Saring Himig Chorale in 2012. Currently, the group is made up of singers from different schools who are also koristas. The group continues to create, arrange and perform new music, to inspire many young artist in contemporary a cappella singing and contribute to Philippines music and performing arts heritage.

Visit their Facebook Page! Click the photo.
Visit their Facebook Page! Click the photo.

Let’s get to know each of them.

Ron Laderas is a choir conductor, arranger and singer. He had sung for the following choirs: Hagonoy United Methodist Church (UMC) , Bulacan State University Saring Himig, and Obando UMC. He sings Bass in the group, and takes inspiration from a cappella groups like TAKE 6, Swingles Singers, Kings Singers, The Filharmonic (a Fil-Am group who guested in the Pitch Perfect movie), Rajaton, Pentatonix, Home Free, The Real Group, and our very own The Company. Likewise from the following musicians (composers, conductors, and arrangers) Lucio San Pedro, Mark Carpio, Eudy Palaruan, Chris Borela (who currently conducts Bulacan State University Saring Himig), Ily Maniano, Eric Whitacre, Deke Sharon and Ben Bram. He thinks that a cappella music is popular in this generation, and that the community is getting bigger.

Bogart Laderas is the beatboxer of the group. He is Ron’s brother, who along with him are pioneers of the group. He started with the school choir in Bulacan and is also a Dubbing Talent. He joined the choir because music is his passion, and his ticket to studying as a scholar (some schools do offer scholarships, whether partial or full, to choir members, another korista perk!). His most unforgettable moment was to sing Heal the World with The Philippine Madrigal Singers. He likes a cappella music because of the fact that “you have no choice but to squeeze your imagination on how will it sound full because voice and imagination are your only instruments.”

Almond Pondevida Bolante started his choral journey in high school with the Ramon Magsaysay Glee Club, then in college with the Our Lady Of Fatima University Chorale. He used to train with the Philippine Madrigal Singers, and he says he’s a big fan of the group. The reason he joined a choir is “for me to know how to blend with other people because for me, as a singer, you have to know how to harmonize for you to practice not just your voice but your ears.” He enjoys touring and singing with a choir because he gets to know different people and different cultures, at the same time, share your own culture to them.

Joshua Cadeliña studies music and is a recording artist and dubbing talent. He has joined the Ars Noveau Chorale and Novo Concertante Manila (another award-winning church-based choral group) prior joining Acapellago. He sings tenor and is a trained classical singer. He recalls his most unforgettable choir moment with the Novo Concertante Manila, “It is my first time to travel abroad and to compete internationally (Novo had its European Tour in 2014). Gladly, Novo won the Grand Prix in Poland.” For him, a cappella music “requires sensitivity to each other. It is one of the hardest things to do in a cappella singing but I find it really interesting.”

The only belle of the group is Michelle Corpuz Pascual. She started singing with the choir as member of NAMCYA prizewinning choirs from the north, Samiweng Singers, Ilocos Norte National High School Youth Choir, and Laoag City Children’s Choir. She also trains with the Philippine Madrigal Singers. She believes that joining a choir would improve her singing and widen her knowledge on music. She also thinks Contemporary A Cappella has its own uniqueness.

These choristers also take part in the Sing Philippines Youth Choir, a project of the Cultural Center of the Philippines and the Philippine Madrigal Singers. Michelle and Almond joined its maiden batch in 2014, while Joshua and Ron will be part of the second batch who will also be the laboratory choir of the Conductors’ Workshop component of the Hands-On Choral Workshop this June at the CCP (by the way, I will be one of the trainors again, looking forward to teaching again!).

Of course, I made them answer why they are certified koristas:

#KoristaAko dahil naniniwala ako na dun ako nilagay ni Lord. Destiny kumbaga. – Michelle

#KoristaAko dahil ako ay alagad ng musika at mahal ko hindi lang ang choral music, at a cappella music kundi pati narin ang lahat ng bumubuo ng musikang Pilipino. #KoristaAko dahil proud ako na isa ako sa mga bumubuhay sa musikang pilipino. – Almond

#koristaAko dahil minahal ko na ng sobra ang pag-awit at ang choral world. Mahirap man ang pagiging full time musician sa bansa, pinili ko pa rin ito dahil dito ako masaya, tulad ng nararansan ng iba. – Ron Laderas

 

Do watch out for their upcoming events, concerts, more cover songs, and a Digital EP coming out soon. Follow them on Facebook and Youtube for the newest events of the group.

Gratitude to Acapellago and their manager, Riva Ferrer of the Philippine Madrigal Singers for this feature. To close, here’s their newest cover, Dulo, by Thyro and Yumi, the duo behind the current hits popularised through the Philpop Music Festival, as sung by Sarah Geronimo, in a cappella.

Brotzeit Junior Chef at Work Workshop

Brotzeit Junior Chef @ Work – A Fun Baking Workshop For Kids This May

 

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Mommies and kids find cooking and baking sessions fun especially this vacation. The kids like to play and imitate their moms in the kitchen, mold some dough and bake easy to prepare cookies and breads. Moms enjoy seeing the kids able to work on their own, even with their little hands, and be able to make simple treats all by themselves.

This month of May, every Saturday, Brotzeit will be having their Brotzeit Junior Chef @ Work where little ones can have a fun afternoon of making their own favorite Brotzeit food. They can learn how to make their own Fladen, Cookies, and Pretzels. It will be an exciting experience for little kids complete with aprons, cooking tools, and certificates and they will get to taste and bring home the products that they made.

Sign up at least one week before each class. You may also contact Malou Gonzalez at malou@brotzeitphil.com for schedules and registration.

Come with your kids and experience the fun of being Junior Chefs!

Check out their Facebook, Instagram, and Website for details.

Magnolia Ice Cream + MaiChard: Pinasarap ng Tamang Panahon

It’s extremely and terribly hot these days! Just makes me want to jump in a pool or stay indoors with my AC in high cool temp.

Makes me want to scream, “Ice Cream!!!”

During Holy Week, I got a timely invitation from Magnolia Ice Cream to taste their newest Best of the Philippines Collection flavours. Such a great break from the intense heat that day!

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The very accommodating Elmer Villasanta, product head of Magnolia Ice Cream, talked about their newest products and campaign.
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The three new flavours are Banoffee Pie, Mango Salted Caramel, and Strawberry Crumble Pie. Sounds like desserts, right? Because the names were taken from cakes and dessert flavours. Likewise, the main fruit ingredients are summer fruits–bananas, mangoes, and strawberries, all refreshing in this summer heat.

As you can see, Magnolia had us taste all three flavours in one sitting, giving out a serving of two scoops each one after the other, while the flavours were introduced. It was the first time for me to eat that much ice cream! I wasn’t able to finish each glass though but they all tasted so good and rich.

And the endorsers of these new flavours were introduced to us. And they’re no strangers to the guests who came in the intimate event, because they belong to different fan clubs of the endorsers. No less than the Phenomenal Love Team, Alden Richards and Maine Mendoza.

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Larger than life: Alden and Maine standees in lieu of the real thing. Close enough!

Fans of Alden, fans of Maine, and fans of their love team had this opportunity to get to mingle for the love of Aldub and ice cream. It was nice to learn how passionate these people are in supporting their idols, who were handpicked by Magnolia to endorse their new product offering. Who else could best spread the news but their fans themselves!

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Alden and Maine fans flocked Magnolia's office for the tasting.

We also got a pre-launch viewing of the newest Magnolia commercial featuring Alden and Maine, to the delight (and kilig) of the guests. Click this link to watch the commercial.

And if these were not enough, Magnolia extended the ice cream treat to our families by giving us free samples of these three flavours! Plus, they thought of the little ones at home and threw in some popsicles for them.

I actually was able to buy another tub of Strawberry Crumble Pie just recently, and the family finished it in just a couple of days! The big tubs (they only sell in one size) are really meant to be shared with the whole family.

Thank you so much for that yummy and wonderful afternoon, Magnolia Ice Cream!

Do watch out for more from Alden and Maine for Magnolia, and watch out for exciting promos from our favourite ice cream!

If you want to win autographed mini standees, here’s your chance!

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1. Follow @magnolia_icph on Twitter.
2. Watch out for the questions from Quiz Masters Alden and Maine.
3. Tweet the correct answer with the hashtag #MagnoliaIceCreamisALDUBest
4. First to tweet the correct answer wins!

Ready for Action: Paw Patrol Meet and Greet at SM Mall of Asia

Meet and Greet events are the modern-day fans day for the little ones. My kid has been to quite a number already, and we event travelled far and near for these events.

Fortunately, Toy Kingdom has had several of such events in the past couple of years, such as Sofia the First, Doc McStuffins, Jake the Neverland Pirate, and the Arendelle Sisters Elsa and Anna, which was a perfect fifth birthday gift to her last year.

This weekend, our favourite patrollers will visit the Mall of Asia, and we’re all invited to attend this fun day of activities.

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Dates & Venues:

3:00 – 3:30pm and 5:00-5:30pm

April 29 & 30 – Music Hall, Mall of Asia
 

 

Mechanics:

For a minimum single receipt purchase worth P500 at Toy Kingdom and Toys Section of The SM Store, customer will be given a stub by the sales personnel on duty.The stub will serve as the ticket to enter the Paw Patrol Ready for Action Event on April 29 or April 30, 2016.

• One stub can accommodate one child and one adult.Only purchase made from April 1 to 30, 2016 can be accommodated for the Meet & Greet schedule.

• Customers must present the stub and pre-register first to the officer in-charge at the registration area located at the event areaRegistration time is 2:30pm to 3:00pm

• Photo opportunity with the Paw Patrol characters will be done on a per batch basis. Total of 3 to 10 individuals can be accommodated every 3 minutes. Maximum of 100 individuals can be accommodated per Meet & Greet schedule.

 • Should there be more than 100 people in line, they will be prioritized for the next meet & greet schedule of their choice.All stubs must be surrendered and valid for one time use only. Stub is not replaceable once lost.

You got the details, now we’re Ready for Action! See you this weekend at the Mall of Asia!

~ Touringkitty

School of Styling: Crafting for the (non)crafty Momma

I cannot remember doing anything DIY, or Do-it-yourself. I am one who is afraid of crafting.

So, I immediately took the opportunity to attend a crafting workshop upon the invitation of School of Styling, a new biz which offers workshops for event stylers, something that is so not me.

School of Styling has monthly workshops, and for this month, they featured tassel garland and piñata making. I actually got super interested with the piñata making workshop, something I dreamed of making for my daughter.

To my surprise and delight, there was also a quick mobile photography workshop as the afternoon started.

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Geunice of Lightkeeper Studios gave the mobile photography workshop.

They also served some healthy and refreshing juices as we are doing our output of the workshop.

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Juice Barista served these. I got fruit-infused water.

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Indy Ycasiano gave the craft workshop. I have heard her name as creator of She Dreams in Ink. Together with Em Sulit of Game Changer, they call School of Styling their Passion Project. I actually like the term!

There was also a children’s corner, wherein my daughter got to played with some kids of the workshoppers. Mommas got to craft, kids got to play.

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She was actually getting ready to work on the table. But kids gotta play!

And here was my output!

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I know. Failed attempt on the tassels!
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My mini-ice cream piñata!

What I liked most about the afternoon was, aside from making the crafts, the founders of School of Styling explained why they came about with the workshops. And I particularly liked that they emphasized how their workshops can help other people start their own small businesses. One of our seatmates for that afternoon was actually gearing up to start her own event styling business, and the workshops so far have been of great input to her, as she prepares as well for her upcoming wedding.

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Workshoppers with School of Styling movers.

As for me, I’d really work on that piñata, perhaps for Cinco de Mayo. Aria is looking forward to it.

Check out their next workshop next month!

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Visit www.schoolofstyling.ph or follow them on Facebook and Instagram for upcoming events.

#KoristaAko: De Pano Sisters

Korista Ako

Time flies when you’re having fun, indeed. First quarter of the year is ending, and since Holy Week came in a little early, March became a busy month for most koristas, especially those in the church ministry. We got to thank our church musicians for making our Holy Week more solemn, reflective, and meaningful with their beautiful music.

March is also Women’s Month, so here’s a feature on three women–sisters, actually–who are great choristers I admire (and I sure am you will, too, and be encouraged to sing in a choir as well, after reading this!).

Presenting our Koristas for this month, the De Pano Sisters: Nell Armin De Pano-Raralio (Armin), Nina Rose Aurora De Pano (Niner), and Nelda Aurora De Pano-Supnet (Dada).

L-R: De Pano Sisters--Dada, Niner, Armin.
L-R: De Pano Sisters–Dada, Niner, Armin.

Belonging to a family of choristers (church choristers at that), all three currently sing (and go on concert tours) together with the Ateneo Chamber Singers. And apart from being choristers, Armin has a day job as a GM of a logistics company and GM of a back-office service provider, Dada is a stay-at-home wife and mom, and Niner is a session musician and gospel songwriter. Dada sings Alto 2, Armin sings Soprano 2, while Niner started to sing Soprano 2 but is now assigned the Alto 1 line (Their voices almost complete the treble section!).

 

What choirs have you joined, from past to present?
Dada: As I remember it: KFUMC Cherub Choir, KFUMC Tagalog Choir, KFUMC Chancel Choir, Himig Scientia, Tanglaw Singers, ACGC, SINAG, Uno, Ateneo Chamber Singers, Philippine Chamber Choir, San Miguel Master Chorale, Philippine Vocal Ensemble.
Presently actively singing with The Ateneo Chamber Singers and the KFUMC combined Tagalog and Chancel Choirs.

Armin: 1) Church: Kamuning First United Methodist Church, all choirs as I grew up: children’s choir, tagalog choir, Chancel Choir, youth choir, etc., as member, conductor, or accompanist (Male Chorale). “The singing Methodists” is the underlying tradition in our early and unbroken involvement in church music.
2) School: Intl School Manila: Girls Chorus, A’Capella Choir, and the high school Octet. In Ateneo, Ateneo College Glee Club. For 2 years also, I was a member of the Saringhimig under George Hernandez of UP and AILM.
3) Ateneo Chamber Singers, which I joined the year after I was widowed. Singing again in a serious (serious?!!??) choir was a real comfort and companion to me in my widowhood, doing something I enjoyed, something challenging (no joke entering a choir at age 46—it was most humbling!) and something that allowed me to be in the close fellowship of people in ACS. It’s a joy to be in this family.

Niner: As my sisters related, started singing with the choir as a young child (with Ate Armin as conductor!) with the Kamuning First United Methodist Church’s CHERUB CHOIR. In my teens I sang with the youth choir otherwise called TAGALOG CHOIR under my Dad’s sister Zenaida Parungao at first, then under Kuya Arnel (De Pano, another De Pano sibling who is notable as chorister, composer, and arranger). Then on to the big leagues, the adult choir, the Chancel Choir under, originally, my Dad’s sister Zenaida, afterwards under Ate Armin and Kuya Arnel. It would be fitting to acknowledge the great Methodist tradition of singing any time, anywhere — aside from my siblings, uncles and aunts and cousins were in the choir with us one time or another.

I also sang with our high school choir HIMIG SCIENTIA under Mrs. Letty Lomibao – that was in Quezon City Science High School. During my HS days I also sang with Tanglaw Singers, a Methodist youth group made up of youth from different churches. Then Sinag, another Methodist youth group under Kuya Arnel music ministry. For some time I was an honorary singing member in SARINGHIMIG under George Hernandez. I then sang with the Ateneo College Glee Club under Joel Navarro. I also got invited to sing with the HIMIG SINGERS of Davao under Alvin Aviola aka Max aka Kuya Bong. Joined the SMMC too. And Philippine Vocal Ensemble. And of course the ATENEO CHAMBER SINGERS.

 

Why did you join the choir? What was that something (or someone) that influenced you?

Dada: Music has always been my family’s ministry. So I joined the Cherub Choir at around 5 years old and I never stopped singing since.

Armin: It was the most natural thing to do—we were born to singing Methodist families on both sides. All of us 9 siblings went the same route, sang in all choirs, as ALL our children also became inevitable recruits to the children’s choir of their generation. Sadly, as in my children’s case, the kids have been less passionate about choir singing.

The reason we sing is because it really is a gift the Lord has given every singer to be used and made fruitful—music is the language of the soul, singing is twice praying, etc. What is worship without song? A wedding without music? A celebration, a thanksgiving, or a sadness, a yearning, without expression in music? Mahirap, no? For me the power of music is akin to the beauty of nature. You capture a little, and, really, it’s a lot: for the singer, for the listener. And so we sing. Praise God!

Niner: Joining the choir is a natural progression in my family — what with numerous aunts, uncles, parents, siblings to emulate. I stayed with the choir because of the joy it brings. It has since become my ministry.

 

What is your most unforgettable choral moment?

Armin: As you see in Slum Books, “too many to mention.” Every time we get a song right is a choral moment for me. Every time we hear/encounter beautiful choral music (other choirs) is a choral moment for me. And to have known, remain friends with, to work and sing with, the generation of the great movers of Philippine choral music: what a kick it is. It makes me proud, thankful, and humble.

Niner: Gaya ni Ate (Armin), every singing event is a choral moment to me — some grander than normal but every time I sing brings out the best in me.

Dada: Probably when I was part of the all children’s choir that lined up the Malacañang Palace driveway and main lobby singing Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus and ‘Christus vincit, Christus regnat; Christus, Christus imperat!’ during Pope John Paul’s very first visit to Manila. I was still in Elementary School then. A close second would be singing for the Papal Mass with Pope Francis in January 2015.

 

As sisters, have you toured with the choir together?

Dada and Niner touring together during college at the Ateneo in California.
Dada and Niner touring together during college.

Dada: I have toured with Cha Nanu (their nickname for Niner) more times than with Ate Armin. To wit, with ACGC in 1986 for the United Airlines’ Sister-city Exchange Program (to Sacramento, CA); with ACGC again in 2000; with SMMC to Taiwan and Korea in 2002-2003; with the Ateneo Chamber Singers in 2003 (US), 2006 (Europe and Singapore, with Ate Armin also), 2008 (US, Nanu only), 2009 Tokyo, Japan and Taipei (with both Ates), 2012 to Sapporro, Japan (with Nanu only), 2014 to Singapore (with both).

Armin: They (Niner and Dada) have also been session musicians together; just over a year apart, age-wise, they’ve been together a lot more.

 

 

More recently, the three sisters went together with the ACS in Singapore for the Three Festival.
More recently, the three sisters sang with the ACS in Singapore for the Three Festival in 2014.

How was the experience being with family members in a choir?

Armin: We love it. My siblings and I sing together every Sunday in church, year in, year out. Of 9 children in the family, 7 of us were members of the Ateneo College Glee Club,& 2 of my sisters in law were ACGC members, too, making us quite possibly candidates for the biggest Glee Club family. My Kuya Albert and I were in Saringhimig together. And, as you know, the DePano siblings were in SMMC* together, too. We like each other, we like singing together. We are also big supporters of Arnel’s entire music ministry. Buy One Take All applies to us.

*SMMC is San Miguel Master Chorale–Dada and Niner, with Arnel

Dada: As the youngest of us 3 there is more financial security when touring with the Ates. Hehehe.

Niner: Masaya! We push each other to sing our best — pulisan sa nota, okrayan at tawanan sa mistakes. But I think having siblings in the choir contribute much to the homogeneous sound of a choir — our voices share a timbre that naturally blend.

 

#KoristaAko dahil:

Karapatdapat na ibalik ang lahat ng papuri sa Panginoon na Syang Bukal ng lahat ng grasya at pagpapala, sa pamamagitan ng aking pagawit. – Dada De Pano Supnet

In my case, the question would probably rather be: How can I not be a korista? – Armin De Pano Raralio

Ang pag-awit ang talentong iginawad ng Diyos sa akin, natural kailangan Kong umawit para sa Kanya! Lahat ng iba pang karanasang dala ng pag awit ay karagdagan pang biyaya mula sa Kanya. – Niner De Pano

With the Ateneo Chamber Singers in a concert at the Philamlife Auditorium.
With the Ateneo Chamber Singers in a concert at the Philamlife Auditorium.

Big thanks go to the De Pano Sisters for sharing their simple lives intertwined by music.

#KoristaAko is powered by Touringkitty. Tune in for the latest post every last week of the month. Follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for updates.

Bert Lozada Swim School: Trusted name in swimming lessons

I love water, but swimming doesn’t love me!

Hmmm, did I say it right?

I love being in a pool, I can be on it especially when it’s summertime (for as long as it’s no more than four feet deep). I had several attempts in learning how to swim, but to no avail. Well, a little perhaps. Back in college, one of my choirmates “tried” to teach me for a whole week, in between rehearsal sessions. At the very least, I learned to float. That was it.

So I promised myself that I’d bring my child to swim lessons as early as possible. And this is the opportune time for my little girl to start. And doing this with no less than the decades-long trusted name in swim lessons, Bert Lozada Swim School.

Before the Holy Week break, mommy bloggers were invited by BLSS in their Summer Classes launch at our favourite pool place, Ace Water Spa in Pasig City.

Aside from the actual launch, we were given a chance (yes, both moms and kids!) to have a lesson with their very competent coaches.

My little mermaid having fun in the water.
My little mermaid having fun in the water.
Underwater!
Underwater!

The moms had no less than the company’s COO, Angelo Lozada, as our coach for the day.

Mommy Bloggers get quality lessons from the company head himself.
Mommy Bloggers get quality lessons from the company head himself.

Coach Angelo was a pedagogue, really. He made sure he knew each mom first before we even got in the water. We had our own personal concerns with the water. Some can swim, most cannot. Some fear submerging, others cannot float. So we got sorted into various groups (a la Harry Potter) and got to work on what we knew and what we wanted to achieve that session.

While we moms were pretty sure our kids were enjoying their lessons, we are dealing with our own swimming issues and concerns. We got through, and personally, I’d like to learn to swim because it is a life skill, as what BLSS has been stressing that whole afternoon. Plus, it might also save another life, who knows!

And everyone, too can have that safe and enjoyable summer because they know how to swim! BLSS offers programs from babies to adults, even for persons with special needs. They also train competitive swimmers and coaches. For whatever age and need, BLSS has that personalized touch to each student.

Visit their website to know the various programs they offer. They are in over 60 locations.

Their promise: At BLSS, everyone can swim!

Third generation Lozada swimmers and owners of BLSS: Angelo and Anthony Lozada, with bloggy babies Anika (of Mommy Fleur www.mommyfleur.com) and Ariadne (of Touringkitty www.touringkitty.com)
Third generation Lozada swimmers and owners of BLSS: Angelo and Anthony Lozada, with bloggy babies Anika (of Mommy Fleur www.mommyfleur.com) and Ariadne (of Touringkitty www.touringkitty.com)

 

Visit www.bertlozadaswimschool.com to learn more about their quality programs and locations.

 

~ Touringkitty

 

Photo credit: All event photos from BLSS.

Philippine Proverbs: A golden book of wisdom

“May kasabihan po tayo…” (We have a saying…)

This is a familiar line to our generation. A local television noontime show has this motto-memorization, er, mini-beauty pageant for little girls giving nuggets of wisdom as they introduce themselves.

Words are wisdom, and these are compiled in one book called Philippine Proverbs.

E-vite for the event.
E-vite for the event.

National Book Development Board head, Ms. Neni Sta. Romana-Cruz chose 105 proverbs from a bigger selection from master folklorist Dr. Damiana Eugenio, who compiled various folk literature that includes stories, legends, myths, folk songs, among others. The proverbs come in about 20 Philippine dialects, and translated to English for commonality.

It is an easy read, and I try to savour the language, especially those unfamiliar to my ears (well, eyes, in this case). I actually read them aloud then read the English translation. Some dialects would have similar sayings to English, some cross dialects, that one can be found in several different regional groups.

The book was launched in a very intimate (but filled to the brim) venue last March 15. Friends, family, fans, and mommy bloggers (like I am) were in attendance. It was an afternoon of local Filipino kakanin, quick Proverbs Bingo game, and a small skit of a couple who spew proverbs while fighting, (which made some of us panic a bit–the elder lady beside me was one).

We were able to have our copies sign by the author herself, along with the illustrator, Eisen Bernardo. His lively drawings and vivid colours made the book easy to the eyes.

Author and Illustrator at the middle, flanked by mommy bloggers (and their babies).
Author and Illustrator at the middle, flanked by mommy bloggers (and their babies). Photo credit: Mommy Joy Barachina Lojo.

And since there were other books on sale (some by the author herself too), I got a couple for my husband and kid, which I had signed as well by Ms. Neni.

Thank you, Tahanan Books, for inviting us to this launch.

“Ang gamot sa kalimot ay paalala.”

“Bukas, kwento na lang ang lahat.”

“Time is gold.”

These are but a few of the sayings I carry to heart all the time.

 

Just like in an autograph book in high school, what is your motto?

 

~ Touringkitty