I am so very thankful for this much needed long weekend. We didn’t plan  getaway like many people did. I’m glad we didn’t since there was a typhoon over the weekend which battered the Northern Luzon area. Instead, we scheduled spring cleaning in our condo unit. It was a long and tiring day but I am so very happy to have a clean house. At the end of the day, we were able to throw away 7 large bags of trash and set aside a few bags of old shoes, bags, clothes and other useful items to be given away. Our storage cabinets are grateful for the cleaning and purging.

I also got myself some me time at the salon and had my hair treated with Keratin Complex. It’s the 2nd time I did it, the first one was over eight months ago. I loved it then, I love it now. My hair is now smooth and shiny, perfect for my birthday celebration.

I also got a manicure and tried out gel polish. It’s a new technology that I’ve heard about a couple of months back, but was unavailable in our country until recently. The process is not much different from traditional polish except that the manicurist used a different polish, several layers of it, and my nails are exposed to LED light after each application. It dries the polish immediately and completely. No danger of smudging polish that was not dried properly.

Drying the polish in between application

The result – thick layer of shiny neutral-colored polish

I also spent time in the kitchen over the weekend. I got to try a quick dessert recipe I saw in Everyday Italian.

Wanton wrappers filled with Nuttela
The Crispy Nuttela Dumpling – Crunchy skin, soft melt-in-your-mouth
filling that is mildly sweet and so delicious!

I also baked Chocolate Souffle, my 2nd time. It turned out better as I adjusted the recipe a bit, plus improved on the process making sure all ingredients were at room temperature. I injected sweetened whipped cream in the center using a turkey baster. Yup, got to buy me a piping bag! No photos though. The souffle was devoured minutes after I took them out of the oven. Yum!

I cooked pasta with a creamy sauce – something I haven’t done in a long time. This time, I added gorgonzola cheese (mouthwatering!) plus smoked salmon and capers. Yum!

Pasta + dinner rolls

I cooked pansit for merienda on Monday and had my parents, brother and his wife over. I am thankful for leftovers! I love reheated pansit bihon!

I also did another newborn shoot. This time, it’s 6-day old Max Antoine Atienza Decloedt. He’s the son of my colleague (who is also Ariel’s former colleague). Will share more about this shoot but here’s one photo that I super love.

Isn’t he adorable?

I am extremely grateful that the typhoon didn’tdo much damage on our part of the country. However, many of my countrymen were not as fortunate. I pray that the Lord will provide all of their needs and sustain them through this trying period.

Finally, I am grateful for date night with Ariel. It was raining and traffic was horrible. I took a while for us to find a parking spot, but it was worth the minor inconveniences. Ariel and I enjoyed a quiet dinner in one of our favorite restuarants, Gaudi. We normally just go for steak and some tapas when eating here but this time, we added paella to our usual fare. Great food, and even better company. That’s a perfect end to the work week. Happy weekend ahead!

Enjoying steak and black paella

Written by Alby Laran

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