Happy Valentine’s Weekend!

Free VDay E-Cards and link love :) Read on.

Happy Valentine’s Weekend, everyone!

I’ve a feeling B’s cooking up something special (well if he isn’t, this post will let him know I’m expecting one!) so I hope your weekend would have its share of pleasant surprises too.

Speaking of surprises, here are some free Happy Valentine’s e-cards that I’ve made for you to download, personalize and send to your loved ones. (Click on the card for its full size, then save a copy of an image to your computer.)

1. Wear it on your sleeve.

This card was inspired by the Fun Kids Craft post on Poppytalk.

2. Buttons and bokeh

3. Paris postcard

Vintage images from The Graphics Fairy.

Obviously these cards don’t make any cohesive e-card ‘collection,’ but please let me know how you like them, OK? :)

And, in case you’d like to know where else I’m at, here are a few sites that have kept me in front of my computer longer than I should:

1. Utterly Engaged.

UE is the “first online wedding magazine for everyday brides with style looking for unique inspiration and resources for their wedding.” Their 14th issue is out, and after this post, I’m going back to the site to leaf through the pages once again!

2. Paper Crave. I’m addicted to paper. This site worsens it.

3. Pinterest.

I first joined Pinterest to supplement my initial inspiration board, but now Pinterest is my quick fix for all online things pretty, funny, adorable and worthwhile. You can view my boards (warning: scant collections I know, but am working on it) here.

And for B: Here’s what I’m craving for this weekend. Hint, hint. Nudge, nudge.

Salted Caramel Crepe from La Creperie

Thanks for dropping by. Have a wonderful weekend, and see you next week!

-P

La Creperie (Manila) may be found at the Eastwood City Mall and at Shangri-la Plaza Mall.

Little girl graphic from The Graphics Fairy, cabochons embellishment from PuglyPixel.

Busy, busy September so far!

… AND WE’RE BACK! How we’ve missed you! :)

Somewhere in between his work and my doctor’s visits and physical therapy sessions, B and I have been busy with the following:

1. Giving in to my food cravings!

SHIOK. 01-05 Fort Forum Bldg., Bonifacio Stop Over, 31st and 2nd St, Bonifacio Global City. (L-R: Interiors, Iced milk tea, Char Kway Teow, Steamed Fish Fillet-Lunch portion)

It’s not the prettiest of places and air-conditioning seems to always be a problem, but it’s not called “shiok” (Singaporean slang for satisfying) for nothing. B and I have kept on coming back here for hawker fare, and I find myself asking time and again for their Char Kway Teow. Shiok’s service is fast, with relatively inexpensive food that keeps my belly happy.

ST. GERALD’S COFFEE SHOP. 2/F P & E Building 12 United Street Corner First St., Barangay Kapitolyo, Pasig. (L-R: Baked macaroni, Taco + Egg mayo sandwich)

The first time I was here with B (some 2 years ago), I remember being floored. The piping-hot baked macaroni was oozing with beef and cheese, and I remember telling myself to come back someday for its tacos and sans rival. (I was too busy enjoying the food, I forgot to mind the pretty interiors.)

Well after one rehab session, B and I finally returned to this pretty coffee shop and we left disappointed. While the macaroni’s portions were just as I remembered it, I couldn’t find the overflowing beef and cheese. The beef wasn’t in B’s taco either, and while in the past those ‘executive meals’ would come with a slice of cake, this time it came with a cookie (to be fair, it was a good cookie, but B and I were expecting to have our cake). Pshaw. We left a bit hungry still, and I grabbed my coffee someplace else.

ANCIS’ CUISINE BY ALBERGUS. Gilmore Ave. cor N. Domingo, San Juan. (L-R: Squid Sisig, Puso ng Saging, Bangus Steak)

For a while now, B and I’ve noticed this little nook on our way home from work. We’d usually decide against trying it out, given the limited parking that area has and the horrible traffic we’d experience along Gilmore during rush hour.

So after heading home early one day, we finally got our chance. Ancis’ Cuisine serves inexpensive home-cooked Filipino dishes in solo (good for one) and buddy (good for B :) portions. Since its meals were designed for individuals and small families residing in the condo-packed vicinity, they’re packed in microwaveable dishes and nuked if one opted to dine-in.

B and I decided to take our orders home, and we were happiest with our bangus steaks. The squid sisig had lots of tofu (that’s not necessarily a bad thing in my opinion) and the squid was cooked just right (a really good thing). I was also surprised with their puso ng saging, since I’ve never had it with coconut milk before. Yum :) We look forward to trying out their other dishes. The best part? We found out that night that they deliver!

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Where we hang.

B and I got to know each other more because of our mutual fondness of food and trying something new.

But over time, we noticed that there are places that became our default spots. Here are 3 that we’d go to for quick fixes or to while away the time.

Whoo-ooo? Whe-eere?

Banapple Pies and Cheesecakes

One, Two along Katipunan Ave. and another in Tomas Morato, all in Quezon City

When in need of comfort (and likewise feeling lucky with seating, as this resto never seems to run out of customers) – we’d seek the fast, hot and carbo-loaded meals of Banapple.

Dishes here are meant to be shared (unless what we’re going through at time of visit is truly major – like, major, major).

Fill the tummy, fill the spirit.

Their meals are so hearty that we usually don’t have enough room in our tummies for dessert – which is alright, since we’re not big fans of their desserts.*

* One exception – their double chocolate chip oatmeal cookie. Have it warmed up before serving, then take a bite of its melted gooey goodness and wash it down with tea (or milk, but I’m lactose intolerant).

Like a snug hug in yer belly.

3 Hot Meals and Cookie pictures from the Banapple Kitchen website.

Dezato Cafe

100 Dona Hemady St., New Manila, Quezon City

OK. So maybe their meals are somewhat on the greasy side, seats are limited and one should expect to leave the cafe smelling like the cafe given its poor exhaust system.

Shiny, shimmering, splendid.

But their mochi desserts are one-of-a-kind, and I just can’t get enough of their green tea ice cream-filled versions.

Mochi Madness from Dezato

It also helps that it serves cheap, decent coffee in big heaping cups AND it’s the cafe nearest my house!

Caf-Pow in a mug! :P

Nomnomnom Happy Food

Unit 2 Lower G/F, GYY Bldg., 1 Tomas Morato cor. E. Rodriguez Ave., Quezon City

We first noticed Nomnomnom after we ate at the “world class” kabab place above it. Intrigued by its name, offerings (they serve popcorn with hemp seeds, among other things) and how they were cleverly named (such as VST for “Very Succulent Tomatoes” and Talong and Lasting Love) , we gave it a try.

Since our first visit (pre-renovation), we’ve been coming back for its ultra-thick, sauce-like soups (warning: you won’t be able to finish a bowl!) and its Tinapa Pizza. Yum. :)

Nomnomnom's Malinomnom Pizza

While you won’t hear us rave about all the dishes we’ve tried at Nomnomnom, we do recommend a visit. If you’d like to avoid the college crowd, avoid it on weekends or come in for dinner early, and save your dessert for another place within the area. They do hold events regularly, so for a listing please check out their blog.

You may also want to dilute the soup you just had with drinks at Guzzler (at the back of the Shell Station beside GYY, and if you’re still hungry they’ve got excellent beer chow too).

So where’s your “usual?”