Dec 31, 2015

Goodbye 2015, Hello 2016!


2015 has come and gone in a flash, and what a year it has been. I had my fair share of ups and downs, and had to deal with a lot of stress at work, but still I am grateful. Just like last year, I have no idea what 2016 has in store for me. I will be traveling to the US very soon and will be doing a lot of traveling with my husband, but who knows. Plans can always change.

One thing I can say for certain: I will be spending more time with my Mom starting today. A great start to a new year.

Happy New Year, my dear friends! I hope you all had a fun-filled, smashing, rocking new years eve. I am wishing everyone a bright and promising 2016. May you all lighten up your surroundings with your sweet smile and make way for happiness with your good deeds. Lets rock 2016! 

P.S. God has given me the best life-changer gift before 2015 ends. I still feel ecstatic with what happened yesterday. 

Cheers!
Honey 

Jul 28, 2015

Cafe Naya at The Palace, The Fort


Café Naya, located at Uptown Bonifacio, The Fort, offers a sophisticated yet relaxed atmosphere. It is one of the first three establishments that recently opened at The Palace Manila, which aims to complement the laid back vibe of The Palace Pool Club.

Café Naya’s concept centers on coastal cuisine, a shared platform of Mediterranean, Northern African and European island cooking. On the menu is an array of modern, bold, and sophisticated flavors prepared by, no less than, Chef Mikko Reyes, who has proven his craft in The Hungry Hound, Niner Ichi Nana and Valkyrie Nightclub. 

Without further ado, check out some photos from my dinner at Cafe Naya, truly an experience to behold. Excuse my mobile phone camera's not-so-good quality photos. 

Jun 26, 2015

5 Things I’ve learned in 3 Years of Marriage


Today is our third wedding anniversary.  Saying I DO three years ago was definitely the best decision I've ever made – at least I thought it was. He-he! Daniel and I have been through a lot. We fought our way through everything.  Life slapped me with the harsh reality that marriage is not an easy thing. I’ve actually learned so much in the last 3 years of being married to my best friend. Here are few things I discovered.

1. Marriage is Hard Work, It’s Not All About Romantic Dates and Lots of Sex
I think everyone knows that this is true, but it would only make sense if you experience it. When I got married, I thought it’s a done deal. We know each other well, we love each other, and the rest should be fine. But it’s really not like that. It takes a lot of hard work. We’ve had crazy arguments that gave me random stupid thoughts which include “I want us to break up” moments. But we’ve also had times where we just didn’t stop laughing.

After 3 years of being together, marriage to me is more like a game of love and war. But the more we get to know each other and work hard on our differences, the more we create a beautiful marriage. We still have a long way to go, but with our hard work and commitment, I know we can make it.


Jun 18, 2015

A Tribute to My Loving Cat, Blake, Who Died Today



Exactly 5 months and 8 days ago, I met this beautiful black cat. And I fell in love with him right at that very moment.  He’s Mama Cat’s first born. I carried his body, full of blood, while I was helping Mama Cat clean him. I heard his first “meow” which made me laugh because it was too cute. 


Days and months later, Blake grew up to be a very smart, independent, sweet and loving kitty. He’s the first one to use their shared litter box…he sort of showed Cookie and Amber how to use it. He’s the first one who tried and ate both soft and dry food. He’s always the first to learn new things and tricks.

Jun 11, 2015

Pizza Wars: CPK Philippines Pizza Chef Competition

Last Tuesday, June 9, bloggers and guests were invited to witness the finale of California Pizza Kitchen’s first-ever Pizza Chef Competition, the Pizza Wars. Three Chefs were competing using their original pizza recipes, for a chance to win 25,000 pesos. Aside from the cash reward, the winning pizza will be included in CPK’s Annual celebration of National Pizza Day in August and also, it will be added in CPK’s menu which is scheduled to be rolled out last quarter of this year.

Pizza Wars is CPK’s new adventure, designed to inspire CPK’s in-house chefs to be more passionate and creative with their craft.  The competition, started off with a store level elimination wherein each store selected one representative for the semi-finals. From the ten entries, top 3 chefs and original recipes were chosen to move to the finals. The finalists were Romel Panaligan (CPK Alabang), Leah Castillones (CPK Eastwood), and John Chloe Oplejeda (CPK Trinoma).

May 28, 2015

Dream Twister: A Heart-Pounding Ride


Rex and I got a chance to try this monster. While waiting for Banzai Restaurant to open, we heard a bunch of people screaming their hearts out. Out of curiosity, we checked out this ride, and gave it a try. This 20-meter high machine is no joke at all. Ha-ha! 


The Dream Twister is one of the rides and attractions in SM Mall of Asia theme park. This ride has three arms. Each arm has a total of eight seats where you will be locked by a safety harness…that doesn’t feel like safe at all. Ha-ha! With that dizzying 360 degree spins for about 2 minutes, Rex and I both felt like we were going to slip off, or fly right out of our seats and fall to death. Like seriously!

It was a good-scary experience for me. I was shaking, screaming and almost crying, but overall, it was fun. For only Php100, this ride is definitely a good screaming machine. 

May 10, 2015

Banzai: Authentic Japanese Buffet at SM Mall of Asia


I have been eyeing Banzai: The Great Teppanyaki Theater for months now - I have read rave reviews about the place, and there’s no argument how much I love Japanese food. The picture above speaks for itself, it shows the amount of food I had yesterday. Imagine a 5 feet tall tiny woman eating like a 350 pound sumo wrestler. Ha-ha! But you really can’t blame me, I am a hardcore Japanese food lover, and the food at Banzai was really good, plus it's "all-you-can-eat". 

LOCATION AND AMBIANCE
Banzai: The Great Teppanyaki Theater is conveniently situated in SM Mall of Asia Complex; it is right next to La Fiesta Buffet Restaurant. The place has a floor area of 1,200 square meters and can accommodate up to 300 customers. It's actually pretty spacious, with lots of tables and over 10 food stations. 


The ambiance is good. The restaurant is styled in the usual Japanese fashion; wood tables, imported furniture and lantern light fittings that somehow make you feel like you are truly in Japan. They also do have a Trick Gallery which I love by the way. 

May 4, 2015

Manila Ocean Park: Quick Visit

With an area of 8000 square meters, Manila Ocean Park is Philippines first world-class marine theme park and a premiere educational facility. It is conveniently located behind the Quirino Grandstand at Rizal Park (Luneta Park) in Manila. They are open from Mondays to Fridays (10:00am to 9:00pm), Saturdays and Sundays (9:00am to 9:00pm), and their rates ranges from Php150 to over a thousand depending on the activity or package you'll get. We got our all-in ticket for only Php500; I was told that the regular price for that was Php900. We got it from Robert’s sister at discounted price.


Manila Ocean Park offers a number of attractions, close encounters and shows. It was too crowded when we were there. Robert’s sister’s company had an event that day, so after seeing two attractions, we decided to just go home. We will surely go back though to use the remaining tickets we have. For now, let me share with you our exhausting but fun experience at Manila Ocean Park.

Apr 11, 2015

Recipe: Cheesy Macaroni Casserole with Ground Turkey Meat


Hello there! Its weekend, I thought I’d share with you one of Daniel’s favorite home cooked food. If you’re looking for some quick and easy casserole recipes that you can make with either turkey, chicken or beef meat, you might want to check this out. You can simply use up ingredients you already have in your fridge and pantry.

Apr 3, 2015

Photoblog: National Museum of the Philippines

If it wasn’t for Rex’s Mom, I won’t be able to visit the National Museum of the Philippines. I know, it sounds crazy, especially considering I live in Manila for over 8 years now. *face-palm*


The museum is conveniently located at Padre Burgos Street in Manila. You can easily find this gigantic -white-building which is anchoring Rizal Park (Luneta Park). They are open from Tuesdays to Sundays (10am to 5pm) and charges Php150 for adults, Php120 for group tour adults and Senior Citizens, and Php50 for students – Php40 for group tour students. The entrance rates will allow you to visit the National Art Gallery, the Museum of the Filipino People, and the exhibitions at the National Planetarium.

Mar 25, 2015

Ardy Abello's AIM HIGH, Go for G-O-L-D


When I got home from an event on Tuesday afternoon, I ended up questioning myself about a lot of things. Vice President in Sales (ASIA) is the position you’ll read in my certificate of employment. I am in sales and marketing field and I have dealt with thousands of people in the last 8 years. But somehow, that event with Ardy Abello made me reevaluate myself and what I have become. Have I tried to become great? Or did I choose to just settle with the good? What are my priorities? 

Mar 21, 2015

Dianthus Skin Renewal Set Review



Hey, it’s weekend. I hope you guys are having a great one. Today I will be sharing a satisfying experience I had with Dianthus Skin Care Products. A week ago I received products to try – a skin renewal set, and few different lotions. But heads-up, I’d like you to know that although I didn't pay for any of these products I think they’re fabulous, otherwise I wouldn't post anything about them. 

And again, I got these products for free. The package was sent to me straight from Dianthus Skin Care’s main office in Cebu. I started using the Skin Renewal Set on March 14, the day I got the products. Just after almost a week, March 20, I have already seen great results on my face. Here’s my quick review. 

Mar 16, 2015

Healthy Shabu Shabu - Power Plant Mall, Rockwell Center

Located at the ground floor of Power Plant Mall – Rockwell, Healthy Shabu-Shabu is a popular Japanese restaurant where diners are assured of a fresh, tasty and well-priced meal. As its name suggests, this place specializes in authentic Japanese style hot pot - shabu shabu, which is served with thinly sliced beef meat, and a plateful of assorted fresh vegetables. 


Carol invited us for dinner. It was sort of farewell dinner for Jex, Keona and Michael before they headed back to California. I have seen this restaurant a couple of times, and I have read rave reviews about this place, but I never really had a chance to try or check their food. I'm glad Carol took us here. Here's our Healthy Shabu Shabu experience. 

Mar 14, 2015

Sofia’s Glutathione Soap with Kojic and Collagen Review

Hello there! I never thought I’d be posting a review for Sofia’s Glutathione Soap with Kojic and Collagen too soon. I mentioned in my previous post that I will write an update in 2 weeks - that long to give the soap a chance to show some results. This soap deserves a shout out. For only Php100, I have already seen noticeable changes in just 3 days. No kidding! And I love how it smells like my favorite brand – soothing and relaxing. Anyway, here's my quick review. Note that all my opinions here are 100% honest and completely my own.   


I got these soaps for free – handed by Miss Sofia herself during our lunch with Lifestylers Media and other bloggers. I started using this Thursday night (March 12), and just days after, I amazingly see noticeable changes on my skin.  

PACKAGING: I always say this – adding personal touch can make all the difference to you and your customers. I appreciate how SVR Infinity chose to use colored ribbon on top of the paper/plastic sealed product. It gives this soap a homemade feel.

SCENT & TEXTURE: I like it. It does smell like my favorite brand. My skin is showing signs of micro peeling but I can hardly see it. The soap slowly exfoliates my skin and it’s not giving me skin dryness which is good.  

INGREDIENTS: Glutathione, Collagen, Kojic Acid, Vitamin C and E.

PRICE & AVAILABILITY: It’s only 100 pesos.  You can buy it through Zalora, Generics Pharmacy, or through their re-sellers and distributors (click here to see thelist). 

Mar 12, 2015

Beauty in a Bar: The SVR Soap Bar by Sofia V. Relosa

T
he event yesterday made me fall in love with blogging even more. I am 28, and over the course of my life, I have embraced and tried so many things but none of them have changed my life or brought me as much fulfillment as blogging. Through this online tool, I get to meet awesome people, and that includes this woman I will be featuring today, Miss Sofia V. Relosa. 



Sophia’s Glutathione Soap with Kojic and Collagen smells great. Unfortunately that is the only thing I could tell you right now as I haven’t tried the soap yet. I will start using it today, and I promise to give you guys an honest feedback in a week or two. For now, I want to talk more about the company and the beautiful woman behind this product.

I truly admire how this business started and it’s set up. Miss Sofia is somehow like me, quite lazy when it comes to following beauty regimens. That laziness of hers became a huge influence in the process of creating this “all-in-one” soap. 

Mar 11, 2015

Crunchy Garlic: BonChon’s 4th and Newest Sauce

BonChon, which means “My Hometown” in Korean, is a global brand that originated in South Korea in 2002. It began making waves in the global arena in 2006 as it entered the US market. Its cult following propelled it to international shores, with stores in Asia, including Philippines. BonChon Philippines opened its first store in November 2010 – considered one of the fastest growing QSR’s (Quick Service Restaurant) in the country with over 86 locations nationwide. 


Yesterday, I was invited by Nuffnang Philippines to be part of the launching of BonChon’s 4th and newest sauce, the “Crunchy Garlic”. Needless to say, after I received the invite, you could say that I immediately penned down the time in my schedule. Truth be told, I have never been to any BonChon branch or have tried their chicken, which adds to my excitement.  I am happy I took part of the event; I guess I have found my new favorite chicken place. 


Mar 8, 2015

Nuvo Bar and Restaurant, Greenbelt 3: Second Visit


We visited NoVu in December 2013 for a company Christmas dinner (you can read that post here) and I loved it. Nothing has really changed in terms of décor and design. And just like last time, we really enjoyed its sophisticated ambiance and the sultry tones of the live band. Here’s what we had in our second visit. 



In this visit, I decided to go with their grilled special. I ordered Tuna Belly (Php650.00). It was served with two side sides. I chose mashed potato and mixed vegetables for my sides. I love this one. Yum! 

Feb 28, 2015

Happy Caturday: Amber’s Sleep Chronicle

About last quarter of 2014, I saw a cat strolling in our place. She doesn’t have an owner. Every time I see her, I give her something to eat. At first she was scared to even get close to me, kind of like she had a bad experience with human. But after few days, she learned to trust me and would even give me kisses (slow-eye-blinking). I took her in, and I found out that she was pregnant. She gave birth to 4 beautiful little kittens; sadly “Stripes” died 2 weeks after they were born due to unknown cause. I named the renaming 3 kittens; Blake (the black one), Amber (the orange-ish one), and Cookie who look exactly like her Mom.


These little kittens make me happy every day. Somehow they are better than any anti-depressant out there. Watching them grow is a fun thing. In this post, I will share with you Amber’s little funny sleep chronicle, I’d say unusual because the two other kitties always sleep in their bed.

Feb 26, 2015

Project Pie PH: Build Your Own Pizza

Project Pie Ph is a picturesque, simply furnished, spacious and cozy fast-casual, custom-pizza restaurant. This restaurant is the brainchild of James Markham, who opened Mod Pizza in Seattle and Pieology in California. What I love about this place, you get to customize your own perfect pizza and you can add as much toppings as you want. Ang sarap lang diba? That’s definitely a treat for a pizza lover like me. 


Donna, Anna and I decided to go to SM North, right after work, to check on some new shoes.  It was almost lunch time when we got there, so gutom na kamiLuckily we found this really nice pizza place. This branch is situated on the Upper Ground Floor in SM City North EDSAright across the National Bookstore. 

Feb 18, 2015

It’s A Spoonful of Honey’s first Birthday!

H
ow time flies! According to that dashboard thingy on the right side, I have made one-hundred blog posts in the last year. When the heck did I do that? Haha! It’s seems like only yesterday that I was crying over losing my 3-year-old blog because of some crappy issue with Google. But past is past, and here I am now celebrating another milestone with my 1 year old new baby – A Spoonful of Honey. 



Have you guys noticed my URL? Yuuuuuuup! From www.honeygutierrez.blogspot.com to www.stellarhoney.com.  Hubby got me my own domain as my blog anniversary gift. Not only 1 domain, but all 5 other domains associated with Stellarhoney, to make sure no one will be able to use the same name for their website. Ha-ha! I sure do have the best husband in the world.

When I started blogging about 4 years ago I thought I was already too late in this field. Honestly I didn't start my blog for any other reasons but to keep track of my life, and a nice way to reflect on my experiences. That’s how everything started. From there, I gained visitors. I have made friends with some of my frequent readers. I started getting a lot of questions and inquiries mostly about Korean Dramas and Long Distance Relationship. To this day, each post is surely a learning experience for me. And I love how I can just search around my blog page and re-live all the moments in each post and picture I have posted.

I have found my blog to be very therapeutic. Living a life away from my family and husband is never easy. But with my blog, I was able to share my experiences and photos with them, though they are thousand miles away from me. I can't begin to tell you how beneficial writing this blog has been for me over the last year and I can't thank my followers enough for the kind feedback. You guys are definitely amazing.

P.S. I will be adding 2 new topics in my blog. First I will be doing ‘Caturday” posts to share photos and updates of my little lovely cats. And second, I will be sharing short stories I have written over these years. I hope you’d be able to read them!

Thank you again for visiting A Spoonful of Honey. I promise to do better!

Xoxo,
Honey Gutierrez

Feb 15, 2015

OLIC Restaurant at Alphaland Makati Place

How was your Valentines’ day weekend, everyone? Mine was great; I got a priceless top-secret gift from my amazing husband. But let’s not talk about what I got, let’s talk about mouthwatering food! Haha! Usually when I want Filipino food, I hop on the nearest carinderia (also known as turo-turo), where the prices are much lower, and the food is excellent. But to be honest, it really is nice to eat well-turned-out Filipino food in something other than a carinderia environment. After all, Filipino Cuisine is great food, so why not dine in a fitting grand setting sometimes? Don’t we all love that?  


Dining at OLIC Restaurant wasn’t part of the plan that day. We were supposed to have our brunch at BORNGA Korean Restaurant, but they were still close when we got there. While waiting for the Korean restaurant to open, we decided to stroll around. And we stumbled upon this place, OLIC Restaurant


Feb 13, 2015

How I Renewed My Philippine Passport...Fast and Easy!


The laziness in me kicks in! I have been planning to renew my passport since November last year, but I was too lazy to even make an appointment online. Kaloka, diba?! Anyway, my hubby needs me to send my renewed passport, not a photocopy, but the real passport. My “last-minute” attitude truly sucks! I fell into panic because my passport already expired last February 2!  I even went to a couple of agencies to seek assistance to get my passport renewed quicker or less than the normal 7-day rush processing. But nah, they no longer offer that. Most agencies offer at least 9-12 day processing time-frame, and it cost more. Well I’m glad I changed my mind and processed everything on my own. 


Let me share with you my passport renewal experience at DFA NCR – SM Megamall Satellite office. Please note that whatever works for me, not necessary means that it would also work for you. I am particularly referring to documents and ID’s.

Feb 9, 2015

El Chupacabra, Makati City: Street Tacos and More



I couldn't wait to go back to El Chupacabra again and again and again after my hugely rewarding first-time visit (you can read about it here). My goal is to try every item on their menu at least once! I loved the food here and I was also satisfyingly amazed at what good value the menu was. Each dish was priced at a mere Php100. Here are some of the new dishes we have tried in our previous visits.

Jan 27, 2015

Easy and Quick: How To Change Facebook Profile Picture Without Cropping Your Photo

Some friends of mine are complaining or getting irritated when one of their best photos which they want to upload as profile picture on Facebook needs to be crop for it to fit on the photo window. I’ll teach you the simplest way of uploading your full original picture without cropping it as well as the quality of your picture will not be altered.


1.) Whether you are using your mobile phone browser or your home desktop, instead of logging in using (www.facebook.com), change it to the mobile site which is (m.facebook.com). 

2.) Once you are logged in, just click on your existing photos and select the photo that you want to use as your Facebook profile picture. For photos that are not uploaded yet, you can just simple click "upload photo". 

3.) Final stage is to confirm it. Voila! You just updated your Facebook profile picture, without cropping it.

I hope this easy trick would help you out. Please like, share and leave a comment below if you found this useful, I would highly appreciate it. Thanks!

Jan 23, 2015

Our fifth anniversary…

Five years!!!!!!! It feels longer, but in a good way. Time really does fly…so much has happened! Over these years, I’ve learned a few things about relationship – say thank you, say sorry even if he’s wrong, we are both allowed to get annoyed, and “I love you” can fix pretty much everything.


Last night, I reminisced the first time Daniel and I were together by looking through our photos together and reading my journal. He really is my soul-mate. We are so the same in almost everything – well except with our physical features. Lol


The photo above shows a part of the book I’ve written for Daniel. While writing this one makes me realize so many things about him. My man is the sweetest – he loves my parents just as much as I love them, he sent me tons of bouquet of flowers, he took me to a really nice and expensive dinner at Sky Lounge in Hong Kong overlooking some of the most stunning skyscrapers with a live band playing our favorite song, he’s never ashamed of carrying me around whenever I get tired of walking and so many sweet surprises that I thought only exist in movies.

But no, he is not perfect. He’s clumsy at times which makes him more adorable. He got a bad temper, which matches mine perfectly. Ha-ha! Just imagine us fighting – it’s like world war 3! Blah! Our love story is definitely not perfect. Just like those of others… it is messy, chaotic, and exhausting at times. But still, it is an incredible one.
“The secret to a long and happy relationship is not the idea that nothing bad is ever going to happen. But it's that when something bad happens, you know how to get through it together. One of the most important things is that when you're having an argument, instead of ratcheting up the emotion, you diffuse it. In the middle of a fight, say, "I love you; you're the most important person in the world to me," even if at that moment, those words are the hardest ones to choke out because you're so mad. It reminds you both of the big picture. It doesn't make it instantly better, but it takes it down a notch. And in the cool-down period afterward, you're not left questioning. You know everything is going to be ok. Half an hour after the fight, it's over and you feel good.” - Unknown Author
HAPPY 5th ANNIVERSARY, BABE! You are God’s gift to me. You are the answer to my prayers. I love you 'til the end of time!


Jan 20, 2015

Alan’s 1st Birthday Party in a Roarin’ Jungle Safari Theme

Annyeonghaseyo! It’s been like a month since I last posted something. I have been meaning to share with you guys some new stuff I've worked on or the new Korean dramas I have watched, but work and other personal stuff seems to get in the way. I really appreciate those who've been leaving comments and sending me messages, despite the scarcity of blog posts. *kisses*



Anyway, just to break off the silence that has fallen into my blog these past weeks, here are photos from Alan’s first birthday party. I recently became a Godmother to one of the most charming little boys I have ever met. I had so much fun during the party. Alan got over 500 plus photos during that event, but I doubt I’d be able to share them all to you here. *grin*

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