Melissa for My Little Girl

I have a confession to make. I am a Melissa addict.

I am not really one to hoard designer bags or find the need to always buy the latest trend in fashion, but when it comes to Melissa shoes, my will power seems to go away just like that. Through the years, i have accumulated almost 20 pairs of Melissa shoes. Most of them from the Vivienne Westwood collection.
A portion of my shoe cabinet

My first Melissa is this green pair which i bought back in 2008. It looks almost as new as the day i bought them! And mind you i wear my Melissa shoes all the time. I wear them to work on a daily basis and to church on weekends. So it's not like they're rarely worn. What i like about Melissa is that it retains its shape and can be washed and cleaned after each use. They're very comfortable too!
Vivienne Westwood Lady Dragon collection

So when i had my baby girl in 2011, one of my friends who knew me well gave her a pair of Mini Melissa. I was ecstatic! I did not even realize then that they had Melissa for kids! Oh, the joy! I have tried buying other less expensive shoes for my daughter but they often just get broken soon after. Melissa shoes may be a bit more pricey but it's worth every penny. It's stylish and long lasting. No need to keep on buying a new pair of shoes ever so often.

So a few weeks ago, my daughter and i were invited to the launch of Mini Melissa's animal line. Each pair is just as adorable as the next.

Doesn't she look like Toothless in How to Train Your Dragon? Adorable!

This was my daughter's first pair but in another color. So cute and dainty!

Rhino boots! Who doesn't like boots?

White Rabbit, anyone?

Perfect with that sweet summer dress

Mini ballet - coming out in December! Watch out for it!

Cuteness overload! Gingerbread cookie for the holidays!

All little girl loves teddy bears!

Baby Melissa! Perfect for that new baby girl inaanak!
All of the above Mini Melissa pairs come in a variety of colors. It's time to grab a pair (or two) for your precious little girls' tiny feet!

Mini Melissa Shoes are available at Geleia (Alabang Town Center, TriNoma, Mall of Asia, Shangri-la, SM Aura, Greenbelt 5, Magnolia, Megamall), Rustans (Makati, Shangri-la, Alabang Town Center), Mothercare (Greenbelt 5, Glorietta 4, BGC Active Fun, Magnolia, Shangri-la, Eastwood, TriNoma), Flatshop (Eastwood and Greenhills), Selected Shoe Salon stores, Shoe Thing (Highstreet, Greenbelt 5, TriNoma, Eastwood, Lucky Chinatown).


Stress-Free Christmas Shopping at Cudsly + A Giveaway

It's more than a month away from Christmas and am 90% done with my Christmas shopping! Hurray for me! My solution? Online shopping!

One site that i recently purchased from is Cudsly.  The site covers a wide range of gift items from the practical baby items to fun plushy toys. Price also ranges from below P100 and up so your shopping needs are covered!

Shopping on Cudsly is easy peasy. Just follow the steps below.
What i like about Cudsly is that the shopping website is well organized. I also appreciate the fact that there are a lot of filter and sorting functions which easily narrow down your options to match your shopping list.
Here are some items that caught my attention.

For that sweet little girl who loves stuffed animals. Bitbit the Rabbit is her perfect companion. She comes in a variety of colors. Such a classic bunny that your little girl can grow up with.
Bitbit the Rabbit Floppy Toy, P875
Give a gift that both parents and kids will enjoy. Moms and Dads will appreciate the educational books while the kids will have fun with the little froggy.
Fun with Animals Friendship Box, P1049.75
Calling all grandparents, here's an idea for your active little grandchildren. Who doesn't love a red motorcycle or a pink Barbie bike?
Motorcycle, P2999.75

Fab 12 Bike, P2599.75

Aunts and Uncles, surprise your niece with this magical princess tent. My daughter has one and she loves to read books in it or even sleep inside it.
Sam & Sammy Princess Tent, P999
For the bigger kids, the wild pack bags come in a variety of designs and sizes. Check out to view all of their products. Such a beautiful travel or school companion. They also come in designs for little boys.
Wild Pack Suitcase, P1999.75
Now here's the fun part. Cudsly would like to offer two P500 Gift Certificates to Breakfast with Tiffany readers! Such a great way to jump start your Christmas shopping for this year. Just follow the steps from the Rafflecopter widget below. Winners will be announced on Dec 1, 2014. You have exactly 10 days to join!

Terms & Conditions of the Gift Certificate

  • Coupon is not valid on sale items and disposable diapers.  
  • No minimum purchase required
  • Offer cannot be combined with any other offers or discounts
  • Coupon is not applicable toward cancelled orders, past purchases, returned merchandise, special orders, Gift Cards, eGift Cards. 
  • Coupon has no cash value, is nontransferable. Valid on single transaction only.
  • Management has the right to refuse validity of coupon codes.
  • Offer subject to change without notice.
  • Valid until December 31, 2014
So what are you waiting for? Click on the Cudsly logo to start shopping!


Be Still

I'd like to tell you a story. It's a long one and I'm not quite sure where to start. I shared a part of it in our church last month when i was asked to give a message. So to those who heard that message, i guess you can think of this as 'behind-the-scenes'.  So anyway, i am just going to talk about it chronologically without worrying too much about how the sentences are constructed or whether I'm following the correct writing rule. I am going to tell this story as candidly as i can and hope that the message comes across to you.

About 3 months ago, I went through a rather difficult time in various aspects of my life. From work to parenting to my church commitments. It just felt like so many things are happening and i was losing control and not being on top of things.  I started reading self-help books and  found one parenting book that was very enlightening. It tackled a lot of my immediate challenges and i thought it was the answer to a huge part of my worries at that time.  I carried the book around wherever i went, practically highlighting entire pages as i read along.

Along with reading the self-help books, Dens and i decided to pray and fast for a week. On day 1 of our fast, the Lord spoke to us through Psalm 46:10. The verse says "Be still and know that I am God". It sounded comforting to me but I wasn't really sure what to do about it. On day two, the Lord spoke to us about the Parable of the Growing Seed in Mark 4.

"God’s kingdom is like seed thrown on a field by a man who then goes to bed and forgets about it. The seed sprouts and grows—he has no idea how it happens."

I particularly like the last part where it says the man has no idea how it happens. Because this tells me that it was all the Lord's work. The man just did his part and went to bed without much thought or worry. Then he wakes up to see how the seed has grown.

Curiously, on that same day, i lost the parenting book that i loved so much. Then i was reminded of the Lord's message through Mark 4. Rely more on the Lord than on technique. I have been so anxious applying the things that i learned from the book that i forgot to pray and seek guidance from the Lord. The same thought came to mind on my work and church commitments. Then i understood Psalm 46:10 "Be still and know that I am God".

Fast forward to present day. Last Saturday while we were in the car, my 3-year old daughter suddenly told us how she fell from a bus and had blood all over. I asked where she got the idea since that has never happened. But she did not answer and started talking about something else. This morning, she woke me up at 5am because she wanted to go to the bathroom. When we were about to get ready to go back to bed, she told me the exact same bus story but this time with talks of broken legs and blood from the head. She also mentioned that i was trying to pull her out. It scared me to the pit of my stomach. The only thing i could say then was 'Can i pray with you?' and she said yes. I prayed and cancelled that thought. I asked God not to remind her of that story anymore if it was not from Him. I, of course, also prayed that He will grant me peace"  I spent the rest of the morning (until my alarm clock went off at 6:30am) just lying down and embracing her. With so much tears, i kept on praying to the Lord for clarity and wisdom to know what to do with this story.

On my way to work, i shared the story with my sister, Trixie. I shared with her that somehow i felt that it was just the Lord's reminder for a prayer revival within me.  Truth be told, i haven't had a really good prayer time with the Lord the past month or so.  There was just no motivation. And honestly, after this morning's story, i can tell you that i am driven to pray now more than ever.  Then, halfway through our car ride, my sister called me and showed me something.  There was a vendor outside with a message at the back of his shirt.

Psalm 46:10 "Be still and know that I am God"

It took me a few seconds to absorb the message.  Then His peace just washed over me.  I had to quickly take a picture before our car started moving again so that i can share this with you.

Isn't the Lord amazing? He allows fear to bring us back to Him but gently embraces us with His love and grace.  I am filled with so much love for my Savior and I am in awe of His goodness.  I am writing this with tears and i am beyond words. May you also experience Him in such a powerful way and I can assure you, your life will never be the same again.


Falling In Love

"I am so in love with my daughter!" he said with wonder in his eyes. "And i'm not saying i love her, Tiff. I'm saying i am IN LOVE with her!"

This was about 9 years ago.  A year before i became a mom.  I vividly remember how we were walking along the streets of Makati when he said this to me out of the blue. Just to give you a better picture, this is my Singaporean friend.  He is a 30 something fitness buff who is an expert in calculating financial risks. Imagine a guy who soars in the financial world exclaiming how 'in love' he is with his then 6-year old daughter in the middle of nowhere. I remember looking at him and wondering what exactly he's saying.  How different is it to love your child and be 'in love' with her?  I remember telling him 'Maybe i'll understand you better when i become a mom'.  Later that year, i became pregnant.

My kids are now 6 and 3 (if you're doing the math and wondering where the 2 years went since i got pregnant 9 years ago, you need to read THIS).  Every night before we sleep, i would look at my two children and my heart will swell with so much love.  So much love that i can physically feel it.  Do you remember that feeling?  The kind of love that gives you butterflies in the stomach. The kind of love that makes you smile on a stressful day.  The kind of love that makes you want rush home and spend each precious hour with them. The kind of love that keeps you up late at night imagining what your future holds.  Isn't that how it feels each time we fall in love?

The thought uttered 9 years ago that sounded so foreign to me, resonates with my heart now.  Yes, i am so in love with my children. Now i understand how loving your children and being in-love with them sounds like the same thing but feels completely different.  The journey of parenthood introduces us to these totally unexpected emotions and continues to reveal new sides of ourselves that we have not known before.

Today i am putting this thought out there so that when my kids are old enough to surf through the net, they will know.  That even on my really bad days, i only have to think of them and joy fills my heart. And I am in love all over again.


Mustela: Very High Protection Sun Lotion

This year has been a year of fulfilled dreams and answered prayers. One of my faith goals for Troy last year was for him to be able to play soccer (Read about it here).  With much prayer and faith, Troy is now part of their school's soccer varsity team and trains 3 times a week. While i love that he's very active and so much into the sport, I have been a little concerned about his skin.  His skin seems to be getting darker by the day. As with most six-year old boys, Troy does not like to put sun protection. I've tried giving him various sunblocks but he either complains that it does not smell nice or that it's too sticky.

A few weeks ago, I was invited to the launch of Mustela's Sun Care line, among other things. The sun protection line was reformulated to better fight against dangerous UVA and UVB rays while enhancing the preservation of the skin's wealth of stem cells that are still present in our kids' skin.
Mustela's Sun Protection Range
So when I got home, i immediately asked Troy to try it. I was silently praying that he would like it. And he did!   These days, Troy keeps a tube of the Sun Protection cream in his bag. He puts it on himself each time he changes for soccer training. He has also agreed to use it during recess when he plays with his friends in the playground.

I like that Mustela's Sun Protection cream for the face come with an easy pump. This allows for my son to use just enough instead of squeezing the entire content out. I also like how the body lotion is in spray form so it's quick and fun for the kids to apply. I just have to keep reminding him to check where the nozzle is pointed before spraying to avoid spraying his eyes.

I will end with some tidbits about Sun Protection that i learned during the recent Mustela event. I think it's good to always be armed with knowledge.
  • SPF (Sun Protection Factor) is a measure of UVB protection and is the amount of light it takes to induce redness after sun exposure. Example: SPF 15 - if it takes 10 minutes of noontime sun for you to develop a sunburn, then an SPF 15 will give you 15 x protection or 150 minutes total. So it's not true that SPF 15 means 15 minutes of sun protection while SPF 60 minutes an hour.
  • The sun's peak hours is from 10am to 4pm
  • The recommended thickness of sunscreen application is 2mg/cm2. Most people apply less than that. 
  • Frequent application is more important than just choosing one with higher SPF
You can check out the Mustela products available in the Philippines by visiting their website or going to their Facebook Page,
Contact +639178959988 to find the Mustela store nearest you!


A Dad's Rude Response

Have you seen the YouTube video that is going viral lately?  A dad composed a song in response to the hit song Rude by Magic! Listen to the original song before you view the response.

Lyrics aside, i really like the the song by Magic! It's such a fun song - great for lazy weekend drives. But i'm loving the Dad's response even more.

Original Song

Dad's Response


Hola Senorita: A UN Day Costume

It's that time of the year again when kids dress up in different United Nations' costumes. This year, my daughter was chosen to represent Spain. And if you have been reading this blog, you will know that i am not really fond of buying ready-to-wear National costumes because kids usually only get to use them once (check out our Spanish Matador and Prince William DIY costumes). 

So i started doing my research and found some costume ideas online such as this.

With the help of my creative director (read: Yaya Jovy), we started thinking of how to execute Dawn's outfit. I searched through my cabinet and found an old tube top that i thought would make for a good base for the outfit.  Jovy cut out two holes from the top to fit the arms and altered the bodice fit Dawn's petite frame.

Then she attached a hotel laundry bag at the bottom to hold the red and black crepe paper.
And the sewing of the black and red crepe paper began.
Yaya Jovy hard at work

Fan, hair piece, dress
Our Little Senorita won Little Miss UN in her crepe paper dress
Now our Little Matador has a partner!
So you see, it doesn't cost much to create a fun UN Day costume. All you need is some creativity and a bit of hardwork.

Share links of your costumes with us so others will also be inspired :)


Bangkok for Kids!

I've always thought of Bangkok as a shopping haven. Well, rightly so. But our last visit made me realize that they also have a lot of fun places for the kids.  I'd like to share with you two fun parks in Bangkok that the kids enjoyed during our recent trip.

(1)  Siam Ocean World

The aqua marine park is conveniently located at the basement of the Siam Paragon Mall.  It is perfect for families who cannot decide whether to go shopping or visit a children's park.  You can finish Siam Ocean World in 2 hours and spend the rest of the day shopping and dining inside the mall.

The park contains a lot of interesting sea creatures that are not usually available in most aqua marine parks.
Some poisonous frog - think Rio 2
King Crab!
Here are some fun activities the whole family can enjoy at the park:

The Glass Bottom Boat Ride is an ideal adventure ride for the whole family. This is the best way for the kids to experience riding a boat in shark-infested waters.
For thrill-seekers, i encourage you to try to dive with the sharks or do the Ocean Walker in the same shark aquarium. My sister and i were planning to do this but we didn't have enough time since we had to meet some friends for dinner. Maybe next time.

Another fun way to enjoy the huge sharks in the park is to watch the 5D Cinema Xtreme which is a virtual ride that allows you to have close encounters with the deep sea creatures.

Shark Feeding Show

Watch the divers feed the sharks. The sharks were so impatient they dove into the basket to get their own meal.
Shark Feeding

You may also check out the park's official website for the park schedule and ticket prices:

(2) Safari World

The highlight of the trip for the kids is definitely Safari World. Troy came back telling Dens that he'll bring his dad there one day. He thoroughly enjoyed seeing the animals in a wild but controlled environment.

One thing that really amazed me in Safari World was feeding the Giraffes up close. The place claims to have the largest herd of Giraffes in the world - counting over 300 as of today. 

The kids enjoyed petting and feeding these amazing animals. I never realized Giraffes were that big until we saw them up close and personal in Bangkok. Some of them had heads almost as big as Dawn! No kidding.

Another Safari World highlight was the elephant show. You simply cannot visit Thailand and not see an elephant show! Troy and Dawn wanted to ride the elephants but got too scared to try when we had the chance. I was even able to volunteer to have an elephant walk over me during the show. I only have the video but will try to share some pictures when i get the chance. My mom was so scared the elephant might crush  step on me.
My sister, Tammy, riding an elephant
The kids also enjoyed the Orangutan show. The set was very colorful and the show was funny...well, funny for the kids. I honestly had more fun watching the kids laugh to their hearts' content. 
Finally, there was also the bird clinic where they kept pregnant birds and their babies. It was pretty awesome -- not to mention a good break from the heat since this area is fully air-conditioned. 

Visit their website for more park information

One thing i learned from this trip is that there is truly no country that is unfit for kids.  This is simply because there are children in all countries. If there are no widely-known theme parks, then you just have to find the places where locals bring their kids. 

My kids left Thailand with so much fond memories. I'm sure they don't mind going back next year. Maybe they will be brave enough to ride the elephant then. We'll see.


Our Shangri-la Weekend

Webster defines Shangri-la as a remote beautiful imaginary place where life approaches perfection.  When i think of Shangri-la, i imagine blue skies and clear waters on a cool sunny day.  I imagine stress-free living with a bountiful selection of good food and great company.  "Shangri-la" -- a very appropriate description of one memorable weekend that we had in June.

Shangri-la Mactan Resort & Spa is located in the city of Cebu, Philippines.  When we arrived at the airport, a coaster from the hotel was already waiting for us. We were brought to the hotel where welcome drinks await us as soon as we entered the hotel lobby. There are two areas in the resort - the Main Wing and the Ocean Wing. We booked a room in the Ocean Wing which i would highly recommend for guests with children as it provides easy access to the pool, beach and activity areas of the hotel. We were booked in a premier room but was offered an upgrade to a Panorama Suite at a very reasonable rate so we grabbed it. 
View from our room
Living Room with a sofa bed
Bedroom with a balcony
Nespresso for the coffee lover
 Our first day was spent lounging on the beach and enjoying the game room. We also played mini golf which was free of charge when you're booked in the Panorama Suite. Not a bad deal.

Early that evening, the kids watched a cultural show by the poolside and went back to the room while the parents proceeded to our scheduled massage at the Chi Spa.  It's best to go early so that you can maximize your experience and enjoy the facilities such as the sauna and the hydrotherapy pools. The massages are done in your own private villa which is especially nice if you're getting a group or couple massage.
Chi Spa compound
Private Villa
Another highlight of our trip is the super fun activity area for the kids and not-so-kids alike. They have a giant slide for the bigger kids.  We (yep, we as in the moms) took turns braving the giant slide. The dads were too scared to try. Yes, that's true.

Be sure to bring socks for everyone so that you don't have to purchase a new pair when you go. It's also a requirement to wear long-sleeved tops in the playground. I suggest bringing jackets for the kids so that it's easy to transform any outfit into the required 'long-sleeves'.  Make sure you bring the same for all nannies who will be taking care of them.
Giant Slide
Slides for the kids
Ball pool -- this is also the landing spot of the giant slide

One thing that we decided prior to the trip was to avail of the hotel buffet package. We got three buffet meals each day which sure made it feel like we were living in a luxurious cruise ship. It is especially convenient if you have kids with you so that you don't have to keep on thinking where to eat and there's no waiting time - which is particularly nice when kids are already hungry.

They had two venues to choose from for breakfast and lunch while dinner is always by the poolside. The multiple locations made each meal different so you don't really get bored eating the same food at the same venue all day.

Tides was being renovated then so breakfast and lunch were served at the main ballroom and the Acqua restaurant. We usually take our breakfasts at the ballroom and lunch at Acqua.
Check out the baby buffet area at the breakfast buffet

The Shangri-la mascot visited us each morning
Acqua restaurant

Beach view from Acqua
Our weekend getaway costs our family of four less than P30,000 for three days and two nights - including airfare, all meals and the couples massage at The Chi Spa. This was such a good deal thanks to my super resourceful friend, Kim,  who tracked Shangri-la's promotional deals for us all year.

All of us left the place feeling so relaxed and rejuvenated. The kids had a blast and the parents did not feel like we needed a vacation from our vacation.  We will definitely be back.

I highly encourage you to monitor the Shangri-la Mactan's website for great deals that come by once in a while. The amount you invest for this trip will be worth the memories that your family will share for a very long time.


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