Tuesday, July 17, 2018

OCTOBOY TAKOYAKI RESTOBAR: OCTOLICIOUS JAPANESE EXPERIENCE



When it comes to food, my family's top 2 favorites are:  Filipino comfort food and Japanese.  We've already tried quite a number of Japanese restaurants and we keep coming back to those that suit our palate.

But Ramen Houses are yet to be explored by our family.  We are not actually BIG fans of ramen. Or maybe... we have not discovered yet, the type of Ramen that is... in the dialect "pasok sa aming panlasa"!  



OCTOBOY TAKOYAKI RESTAURANT

So when I got the invite to do a review of Octoboy in Tomas Morato, I agreed right away. One, its Japanese. Two, it would be interesting to give my teens alternative japanese food choices, that we don't usually order.  And this is our honest Octoboy experience!

We got all excited when we saw the restaurant's interior. It kindda set up the mood for an afternoon of good Japanese food.  Check out my son, who had an awesome time doing selfies :)



WHAT OCTOBOY OFFERS:

TAKOYAKI - that ball shaped snack made from wheat flour, with yummy fillings and usually topped with takoyaki sauce, Japanese mayo, and bonito flakes.

Check out what we ordered below.  We liked every single one of them -- with the crusty exterior and chunks of octopus in the middle. The salty takoyaki balls blend perfectly well with the different sauces and toppings. For others, takoyaki is just a snack. But with 6 pieces takoyaki balls per serving, it is quite filling.  And oh my... my long island iced tea was the perfect partner for it!

OCTOPUS TAKOYAKI 
SHRIMP TAKOYAKI

BACON AND CHEESE TAKOYAKI

D' BOMB - giant meaty goodness in aioli and uni sauce
there's a HAPPY HOUR promo 3-7pm 


SUSHI ROLLS AND MAKI - are my teens' ultimate favorite.  More than sashimi, they love these rolled goodies anytime of the day. In Octoboy, their sushi rolls and maki come with a twist. 

SALMON UNIABURI - salmon roll torched, with uni sauce then topped with chorizo bits
Chicken ass with garlic cloves


OUR FAVORITE:


SALMON CEVICHE - salmon sashimi topped with Ikura, sauteed garlic and 
wakame in a gochuchang sesame sauce. Reminds me of the maui-ahi poke 
that we do at home :)

TANTANMEN - with chasu pork, ground pork, black fungus, spring onion
and Taiwan pechay. It was super SPICY. But surprisingly my son liked it!


SATISFIED SMILES :)

VISIT OCTOBOY TAKYAKI RESTOBAR
114 SCOUT LOZANO CORNER TOMAS MORATO
OPENS 11AM - 3AM
9902357












Monday, July 2, 2018

FINANCIALLY... WHO'S THE BOSS?





I have been married for 18 years now... and I must admit, there were a couple of times that money was the subject for major arguments.  Husbands and wives will agree with me, that if you don't create a financial plan as a couple, you will have a hard time surviving your marriage. 

Why?

Because we live in a society wherein: 
  • it is believed, that you are not only married to your wife/husband, but you are also married to your wife's/husband's relatives!
  • it is expected that you help your family (to some extent even distant relatives) financially out of utang na loob

If you want to eliminate financial stress, and achieve marital bliss you must remember:

Money matters are important things to be discussed between husbands and wives. I will always joke my husband -- hey, this is my rule -- "ang pera mo, pera nating dalawa. Ang pera ko, pang shopping ko"

We try as much as we could to discuss finances lightly. And to some extent, he agrees to my rule. Only because he knows, that i am kuripot.  So in reality, the rule becomes, "ang pera mo, pera nating dalawa. Ang pera ko, sa savings ang punta"!

That makes sense right?

It is also vital that husbands and wives know their financial responsibilities. My husband takes care of the bills. I take care of the grocery. We both contribute for mortgage. And since I earn more, I also take care of the teens' tuition.

That's another thing... if in case the wife earns more than the husband, the husband shouldn't feel insecure.  Because marriage is teamwork.  

We have also accepted our strengths and weaknesses when it comes to money. My husband is not a good saver. So, I am the designated taga-ipon.  I have the tendency to be super stingy, so Mr.Wise constantly reminds me to, once in a while, enjoy what I worked hard for.  That is our life's balance :)

Money Matters 101 from Mrs.Wise:


Make a budget.  You must set aside a specific amount for different expenses. Always prioritize payment for bills, tuition, mortgage, insurance.  These are non-negotiable expenses!

Save save save!   If you don't get the savings out of the way, chances are, there will be no more money left to be saved. And this is our formula.



Debt is allowed for acquiring assets. It is ok for mortgage or insurance or UITFs, because after you have paid it off, you will benefit from it.  You will reap financial rewards and security after you have paid it off. In mortgage, the property now becomes and investment. Same with insurance or UITF's.

Debt is also ok if you are purchasing an investment. Debt is definitely NOT OK to buy, cars,luxury travels, gadgets, shopping, etc. Debt can sometime trigger stress if you don't manage it well.

Always have an emergency fund.  And this is our formula for all the BREADWINNERS.  

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

CONTINUING HIGHER EDUCATION ABROAD: WHAT TO PREPARE

More and more parents are sending their kids to continue their higher education abroad. If you ask them why, you’ll get various answer. Some just wants their children to attend university that is better than those available in the country. Some other wants their children to get more opportunity and job offer upon returning. Some other believe that sending their kids abroad make them more independent and open-minded.


If you are among these parents, or at least planning to be, then be prepared. Sending your kids to study abroad sounds like a solid plan for their brighter future. However, every opportunity comes with cost. Not to mention, opportunity for studying abroad is pretty limited while the applicants are abundance. So, are you prepared to pay the cost?



First thing first, communicate with your kids


This is not one-party decision, unlike that time you entered your kids to kindergarten or grade school of your choice. Your kids were young, but now they are old enough to make a decision about something that will impact their future.

So, before deciding on anything, you and your kids have to be on the same page first. Ask them if they have any plan to continue to study in university. If no, why? If yes, where? Do they already have clear idea what university they want to go to?

Ask about their interest and match it with their performance so far. Is it reasonable for your kid to pursue math when he or she has better track record on social studies? If not, does your kid have any plan on how to overcome possible difficulty during his or her studies later? Do they have only one interest, or do they have more?

Do they like the idea of continuing education abroad? Do you think he or she is capable enough to be left alone abroad?

This is important, so you won’t get any surprised rejection from your kids after preparing them to pass the university admission. Before deciding, and planning everything, make sure to share the idea to your kids and your spouse, let them have some time to think about it, and ask what they think about it.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

MRS.WISE VISITS THE BRAINLIGHT LEARNING CENTER IN BGC



Let me start this article with a math problem.  Oopsie mommies, I know most of you will raise your eyebrows and roll out your eyes -- "really Mrs.Wise... a math problem"?  But I promise you dear mommies and daddies.... this post will open your eyes to the wonders of Math -- Singapore Math to be exact -- and how it will benefit your kids!


THE CHALLENGE:  MATH PROBLEM TO SOLVE

There are 8 goats and chickens in a farm.
Altogether, they have 28 legs.
How many goats are in the farm?
How many chickens are in the farm?

After my event, I went home and gave the math problem to my two teens, who have a short 3-year background in Singapore math.  

My son used the algebraic expression to solve it.




My daughter, the practical one, solved it by visualizing, drawing and the trial and error way.





Surprisingly, they got the answer correctly, but using two different methods.  Yey for the both of them, because I, the mom with "math-phobia" did not get to solve the problem.


Thursday, June 14, 2018

MR. AND MRS.WISE STAYCATION AT THE BLULANE HOTEL




Binondo has a vibrant appeal to me and my husband.  One, when we were building our house, we would always go to Binondo to source out budget friendly electrical and bathroom fixtures.  Two, Binondo is synonymous to food trips!  Authentic Chinese food (plus pasalubong staples like Eng Bee Tin and fresh fruits).  Three, Binondo is very near Divisoria -- and when you are in DiviLand -- you have to shop!  Bargain hunting at its best!






But this time... there is a fourth reason why we LOVE Binondo.  Because we were pampered, treated nicely, fed well by the newly opened, old-world charm meets vibrant modern luxury hotel -- the BLULANE HOTEL!


IG-worthy staircase at the lobby
The MEZZANINE OFFERING WESTERN CUISINE
ROAST DUCK JAPANESE MAKI COMBINATION
MY FAVORITE -- SEA CUCUMBER WITH ALABONE MUSHROOM