Let Love Grow with MNL Grow Kits

Our wedding day is near, so near that we are a bit frazzled with the details we have yet to finish. One of which is finalizing the giveaways we will hand out to our guests. Since last year, I’ve had a love affair with plants, or planties as I would lovingly refer to it. It all started with a succulent I bought last Mother’s Day and my affair lasted up to this day.

 

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I wanted to include this love for plants in our special day because that is a unique trait of mine that E supports (so much that he buys me planties here and there). I don’t want to giveaway the usual stuff as well. I was also inspired by pinterest pins which showed succulents as wedding favors set up in a desk with the words “Let Love Grow.”

Photo from Pinterest

Photo from Pinterest

We have already a supplier for the succulents but I felt like for the cost there must be an alternative choice available in the market. Lo and behold the MNL Grow Kits. Before fully investing on 50 or more kits, I wanted to do a dry run first. I have the whole month of July to grow plants and see if the MNL Grow Kits are better than succulents as give away.

The Kits

After 3 days of waiting the MNL Grow Kits arrived. I have chosen Basil, Sunflower, and Pepper as my trial kits.

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The boxes were easy to handle and looked good already. In terms of personalizing it, we might just have to add a tie and a card saying thank you for our coming and let love grow in their houses with kits.

Unboxing the Kits

Inside each kit was the complete set anybody would need to grow their own plant sans the water spray, plastic cover, and rubber band.

What you see first when you open the box. The warranty:

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The instruction guide, seeds, and fertilizer.

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Basically with the kit you will have:

  1. Warranty Letter
  2. Planting Guide
  3. Chosen Seeds
  4. Fertilizer
  5. Plant Marker
  6. Coco Husk
  7. Soil

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Planting The Seeds

I carefully followed the instructions detailed in the kits and I labeled each one. I will check on it every day to see if there has been any sprouts shooting up. I will do another post to document the whole process of growing the plants.

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This is my basil plant, after I completed the first set of instructions ready for germination!13487772_10209603024375133_1361454188_n

Kit Review

So far, I am honestly leaning towards the MNL Grow Kits vs. the succulents. Although succulents are nicer to the eye, it is not that easy to take home and you won’t actually see it grow since it is already planted for you. Our whole concept of let love grow fits perfectly with the kits.

What I like so far with the kits are:

  • Easy to handle
  • Good packaging
  • Carefully laid out instructions
  • Complete planting set
  • Coco Husk – which makes it easier to transfer the plants if needed and the roots grow out vs. ordinary pots
  • Affordable

Cons so far:

  • No readily available plastic and rubber band needed for germination

Overall so far I give the MNL Grow Kits a rating of 4 out of 5.

You can check their site out at: http://www.mnlgrowkits.com/ for more info.

 

Benefit Brow Bar Review

I was due for brow fixing last January, but I decided to let my brows grow more so I can try out Benefit’s Brow Bar. Last year, I was able to try out their brow mapping service thanks for one of the suppliers that we have. Difference I saw is that my Brow Haus brows are thinner while my Benefit brows maximized my normal brows. My colleagues also recommend Benefit more than Brow Haus. So this afternoon, during my lunch break I scheduled my brow appointment.

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So when I got there, Sharon asked me if it was my first Benefit Brow Bar experience, to which I said yes. I told her that I am more used to threading and it was my first time to do waxing – for my brows. She told me that it would be less painful and it was! I definitely liked it more than threading because she even showed me the brow map before she proceeded to shape em. This was a welcome experience because I get to know how it will look like even before the brow service begins!

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After she shaped my brows, she applied cold compress on the area that was waxed. She then said that it would be best if I returned monthly and that she will give me a loyalty card. This is a nice way of selling their service because they were very sincere in making sure that my brows stay beautiful.

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Sharon then showed me how I can fix my brows on my own, although I felt that its thicker than usual at least I got to know how to shape my brows better.

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Overall they provide good service and I do prefer them more than Brow Haus. BTW, I accidentally spent money there because I bought their super awesome product Big Easy. Swear this is worth your money because of the good coverage it provides for your face.

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My Grab Bike Experience

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I have tried Grab Bike this Wednesday after my meeting at the Fort. I usually go for Grab Taxi or Grab Car, but it was past 7 PM. The combination of extreme traffic and high demand for both Grab Taxi and Grab Car meant that even if I tried over and over to book a ride, I will never get one. I mean I probably will but I will be stuck in traffic and get home around 10 PM.

This was when I opted to try Grab Bike, I mean I was used to riding habal habal when I was still working at the Fort (P50 from Ayala MRT to Picadilly). This was the quickest way to get to the office, but with some cons of course (hello magulong buhok). I really wanted to get home as fast as possible, and Grab Bike seemed to be the only legit way to do it.

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Within a few minutes of opting to look for a Grab Bike, I booked a ride. The cost? Php 170. Initially I thought it was a bit expensive but after my ride I realized that it is just the right fare.

grab

My ride from Fort to Coastal Mall took 20 minutes. Yes, sumisingit si kuya but he already asked permission at the start of the ride if okay lang and I said yes. During the stops on our ride I asked him some questions. I found out that there were a lot of consumers already booking rides via Grab Bike. The farthest one he had was Manila to Imus (which just shows how crazy the traffic situation is here in the Philippines – wake up DPWH/MMDA/LTFRB/LTO/DOTC). In terms of daily rides, he would usually get 10 – 12 per day which would mean he can take home anywhere between Php 1,000 to Php 1,500.

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This is why I was saddened by the post I saw on Grab’s Facebook page – that they will be temporarily stopping Grab Bike. I don’t understand why they are keen on suspending Grab and Uber, which provides another option for transportation or commute and a more organized system, and not reprimanding taxi operators with drivers who ask for additional charge or who wants a fixed rate. I am still optimistic though that they will re-consider Grab but if they don’t I think they really should provide different options for commuters.

The Halal Guys at BGC

A little birdie asked me if I wanted to try out Halal Guys after our morning meeting. At first I was a bit hesitant especially because I wanted to stick to my budget. I gave in eventually because it’s food and I usually don’t tighten my purse strings when it comes to food.

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The Halal Guys at High Street is fairly new. Anj (the little birdie) was influenced to try it out after seeing a post from Andi Manzano and her hubby.

Since this is my first time ordering there I wasn’t fully aware of the sizes they had and which one would satisfy my grumbling belly (I skipped breakfast today so you can just imagine my stomach churning out loud noises). Of course I asked the difference between the small and the regular (I even considered the New York size) but I was extremely hungry that time that I ended up getting the regular one.

halal guys

I was like a little kid looking forward to the day after Halloween when it came to opening up my order from The Halal Guys. When I saw my order immediately I regretted getting the regular size. Why? Even if I skipped breakfast my hunger earlier is not enough to finish a meal that is good for two! For the price that I paid it was a good deal!

Taste wise, I like their white sauce! The consistency for me was just right, not thick nor watery. It also had the tangy taste that is not overpowering (had I known that you can request for an additional sauce (P25) I would have gotten one!

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Together with this they also give chilli and barbeque sauce. Both sauces complement the white sauce so I highly suggest you throw everything in before you toss and mix your meal (of course lesser chilli sauce if your not a fan).

I tried as much as I can to finish my meal, but I stopped midway through. I still have the leftovers and I’ll probably have it as dinner. Don’t expect your plate to be filled with too much meat though because what they give is a perfect balance of veggies and meat. I give this a 4.5 out of 5!

 

For a guide in ordering (size wise) here is my pov

Normal Person Appetite – go for small

Hungry (Hunger Games type of hunger) or Big Appetite – go for regular

Carpintero level- go for New York

Product Review: Mommy Mundo Mom 24/7 Planner

Since I was a college student, I always had a planner. Before it was just because it looked nice and I had this idea to use it as my diary, but it then evolved as I grew older as an item to help me function well. This year, after spending more than half an hour at Powerbooks in Greenbelt I decided to get the Mommy Mundo Mom 24/7 Planner.

Mom 24/7 Planner

The top contenders for my 2016 planner were:

  1. Mom 24/7 Planner
  2. BDJ Planner
  3. Tita Witty Planner

In the end, I picked the Mommy Mundo Planner because:

  1. It had a simple lay-out that I can work around with. I liked the fact that it allowed me to list down my to do’s as I go and it had a section of to-do’s or reminders specific for my mom duties.
  2. The planner is just the right size, not too bulky nor too small
  3. It has a pages and perks section wherein I can input our medical history details (which according to E is perfect for OC moms like me)
  4. It has discount coupons which is hand picked for moms like me (I love that it has a coupon for Mommy Treats!)
  5. It has a weekly #MindfulMom corner which helps me zone in on what I need to think about/plan out as bunny’s mom

After a week of using it, I was able to personalize it’s simple spread layout:

Mom 24/7 Planner

As you can see I picked colored pens to help me organize to-dos depending on the life side of myself it is assigned to (pink for work/green for blog/purple for family). Aside from just using it as my work-family planner, I also maximize the bottom part of the page with:

  • Daily thankful for list (my version of the gratitude jar)
  • Expenses monitoring sheet

A week after of using it, I am satisfied with this planner because I really think that they really though of the modern mom when they made this planner. I do hope though that the next planner would have:

  • A back panel pocket, so that I can use it to store receipts or notes
  • A ziplock page, just like the one I think from BDJ. This is something that can be very useful for mommies
  • A monthly expense page, to be part of the first part of each month spread – moms usually are the ones tasked to budget household finances and this will come in handy
  • A list of declared holidays – although I did print out my own and pasted it on the back of the front cover of my planner
  • Frebbie sticky notes (for random reminders and to list down quotable quotes from the kids or husband or friends
  • Ad pages to be well integrated with the overall look and feel of the planner (although I get the need for this I hope the execution part is similar to that of BDJ’s)

Mom 24/7 Planner

Overall I give this planner a 3.5 out of 5.

How about you? What’s your planner for this 2016?

Packing Delicious: Pre-packed Food (amazing-ly yumyum food) Delivered to Your Doorstep

I was just wondering around the internet-verse and I discovered this oh-so wonderful website called Packing Delicious. What is it? It’s a newly launched site that offers Manilenos an alternative to the seemingly obvious fast food choices and canned goods. Now you can have access to canned, bottled, and frozen yumyum food that will be delivered straight to your city door step!

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You can’t really dictate when hunger will strike, so you can be stuck in the horrid Manila traffic, at the office typing away, or at home while watching your favorite teleserye/series. When it does strike at home or at the office after or during work you will usually be faced with limited choices: your tried and tested fast food joint, cook up something (that can take hours or minutes if you go for canned) or drive to the nearest restaurant. Now though you have another option (hurrah!) Packing Delicious (love the name btw).

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So in a nut shell what does Packing Delicious offer? It offers pre-packed yummy to goodness food that you can eat anytime. Food usually is delivered in a can/bottled/frozen. What’s great about it is ,it’s not just like any ordinary pre-packed food its gourmet!

food

Still not that convinced that you should give it a try? Here are some other reasons why you should!

  1. Easy Online Ordering Process – Because really, ordering via the phone is just a hassle nowadays you can order online! It’s oh so easy to navigate in their site too
  2. Great Deals and Discounts – There are promos available to you once you register (the one they have now is free delivery to the first 50 buyers)
  3. Love Local #PinoyPride – Food sold are locally made so you know that when you buy from the site you help support small businesses and entrepreneurs
  4. Delivery to your doorstep – Living in Manila? You have to pay the flat fee and you get the food that you want right at your doorstep at the same day or the next day

Basically what Packing Delicious is, is a marketplace site and service for pre-packed awesome to yummy food which is not just limited to frozen goods but to canned and bottled goods as well. You get access to food made by local and artisan entrepreneurs that will be delivered straight to your doorstep either at the same day or the next day.

Ready to get a taste of Packing Delicious’ gourmet finds?

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Just check out their site

www.packingdelicious.com

 

 

 

 

 

Wow Brows from Brow Haus

I got a GC for Brow Haus from my Sample Room VIP Membership (yay!). The original price of the Brow Resurrection is at P649 but through my Sample Room membership I got it technically for just P50 (paid only for the shipping fee and I got two other products and total shipping fee was P140 so syempre divided by 3 around P50).

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I scheduled my appointment last Monday, Dec 14. I really scheduled it on the day of our company Christmas Party. Of course I wanted to look nice for the Christmas Party! So during my lunch break, I headed off to Brow Haus in Greenbelt. It is located at the 4th floor service area of Greenbelt 5, which is just 10 minutes away from my office (my office is located @ the Enterprise Center).

outside

outside poster

When I got there, I just presented my awesome GC and gave my name for them to check against the appointments scheduled for the day. They assigned Irene to fix my untamed brows. Before I share my experience below is just a photo of my brows before for reference:

brows before

So, Irene assisted me to one of these rooms. Wasn’t able to take a photo of the room, but it was very comfy inside and provided the much needed privacy. She was very accommodating and asked me if it was my first time to experience eyebrow threading, it wasn’t but it was a long time since I last did it. When the actual brow resurrection started, it wasn’t as painful as the other eyebrow threading services I experienced before. Irene was very nice and was telling me that my eyebrows were thick and I needed to only apply only a dash of eyebrow pencil to define ’em. She made my whole Brow Haus experience something to look forward to every month! So after cuts and plucks here and there, here are my fixed and tamed brows:

brows

 

E gave my new brows a sign of approval via the like button when I sent a photo via Facebook Messenger (yay!). He said that it looks way better than before! My overall rating is 5 out of 5 stars! The staff was very accommodating and the service was superb as well! I will be coming back next month after the holiday break to have my brows tamed again.

Here’s a before and after pic again for reference:

before after

Banahaw Heals Spa Review

Last Monday, we originally wanted to watch either Mockingjay or Second Chance, but then my back betrayed me. Thanks to my back pain we ended up going to Banahaw Heals Spa near our place (just a 5-10 minute walk depending on how fast I walk).

banahaw heals spa

Before leaving, I had to prep up Alex (read here: fix the room before we leave so that when we get back I don’t have to deal with a messy room AND leave her with my aunt and mom). This whole prep thing took up 30 minutes. I was super excited for the massage so while we were walking to Banahaw Heals Spa in my mind I was repeating over and over and over again, you will get a massage, you will relax, you will unwind. I seriously wanted to brisk walk, so we can get there faster but I didn’t want to add any more body pain to my already aching back.

The Banahaw Heals Spa branch near our place just had around 3-4 single rooms and 1 couple room. We were both Banahaw Heals Spa virgins so it took us 5 or so minutes to pick which service we will avail of. They have many different types of massage available but they are most known for the 5-in-1 massage (combination of thai, swedish,traditional hilot,shiatsu, and tuina). It will be super easy to just jump in and say we will get the 5-in-1 massage but in our minds we can avail of the massage plus plus.

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They have many different packages that you can check depending on your budget and the type of need that you have. E went for Package #1. This was for back pain and he wanted to try ventusa therapy. I really wanted to try that too, but the spa assistant warned us that for ventusa, they don’t recommend showering 1-2 days after. I can’t afford to not shower for a day or two (hello I can’t show up to work looking cray cray and smelling cray cray too especially because I have to endure hot and messy commute to and from work) so I went for Package 5. Package 5 included body scrub and the 5-in-1 massage.

After registering we were whisked away to 2 hrs worth of relaxation. For my Package, I tried the body scrub and the massage. Confession time here, FIRST EVER BODY SCRUB! I heard from a friend that it was nice but that they will really scrub off your whole body, exception was the private areas only. I wasn’t prepared for it! So when I entered the tiny pop-up room ( just enough to fit a massage table and 3-4 steps from the table), I just laid down and waited for the attendant assigned to me. She came in after 5 minutes with two bowls – one with warm water and one with the body scrub. For a first time body scrub everything went well, I was just repeatedly fighting off the urge to laugh out loud while she was scrubbing my tummy and my armpits. Hello? How can you not laugh when a person scrubs your armpit???I kept on doing yoga breathing to relax myself and even bit my lip to stop myself from laughing. Na-achieve naman, I didn’t laugh or giggle or anything. Congrats me!

After showering off the scrub we began with the 5-in-1 massage. It was like being a flour with lumps which needed extra kneading. The spa assistant really went after my back lumps a.k.a lamig. I know this because I heard the tiny burps she made (which in traditional hilot was a sign of the lumps or lamig getting eliminated from your body). After the mix of traditional hilot, shiatsu, and swedish she began yoga like stretching with me. This was my favorite part, I really felt the back pain disappear when she did it.

Unfortunately, E and I weren’t in the same room, no more couples room when we got there, so I didn’t see the Ventusa cups treatment. I did hear his spa assistant brief him that the Ventusa cups when placed on his back will be a bit itchy (confirmed this with him, it really was itchy daw but he hardly noticed because he fell asleep after). When I asked him how he felt after, he said he felt great except for the fact that some of his muscles felt as though it took some beating (flour nga kasi ang peg).

Overall I would rate this spa place a 4.5 over 5.

They need to develop more their massage areas so that it will really feel private versus what they have now. The service and price however is great already! We only paid P1.3k! For other spa shops it would probably cost P1k per person!

You can know more about them through their website:

http://banahawheals.weebly.com/services.html

 

 

Sample Room Loot 3 Review: Pantene 3 Minute Miracle Conditioner, Creamsilk Leave-On Cream, and Dermax Sunscreen

I have shared before my review of my 2 loots from Sample Room. Same as before, here is my personal review of the third batch of products I got from Sample Room.  Before I got my third loot I had to wait for a week before my reviews were approved. The wait is a bit long, but I think this is their way of managing the number of samples that they give away. So, a week after my review of the first three products I availed from Sample Room, I decided to try the following items:

  1. Dermax Sunscreen – 500 points (P720)
  2. Pantene 3 Minute Miracle Conditioner – 50 points (P59)
  3. Creamsilk Leave-On Cream – 40 points (P49 x 2)

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For my third loot, compared to my first and second, this was a mix of skincare and hair care products. For starters I wasn’t really a sunscreen type of person, because in my mind I already use products that have SPF so I may not need it. I just wanted to give it a try and perhaps save it for later use (like when we go to Bohol).

As for the hair care products, I wanted to take care of my crowning glory more. Been neglected since I got pregnant until today. I wanted to focus more on hair care, because of the extreme hair fall I experience plus the fact that I want to give it some TLC.

Now for the product reviews!

Dermax UV Active Sunscreen

I tried using this for a week. I like how it perfectly blends to my skin vs. other sunscreen products (especially those lotions that leave that white-ish texture after application). What I love the most about this product is the cooling burst it has when I apply it! This is because of its water-burst technology, which for me makes it a most try for everyone. Aside from the cooling burst, the texture of the product is not heavy too. Very light and easy to apply. The packaging even works well for the product because the pump makes it easier to apply.

dermax uv active sunscreen

Although it said that I can apply it to my body and face, I limited the application to my arms and legs. My face is already protected by my moisturizing cream that has SPF 15. That is more than enough since I wouldn’t be exposed for more than 4 hours to extreme sunlight. Aside from me already having that moisturizing cream I also have sensitive skin that made me hesitant to apply it to my face.

Overall this product will be a staple in my skincare must haves, but not for everyday. Mostly for summer or when I have events that will require me to be out and about all day long.

 

Pantene 3 Minute Miracle Conditioner

In my second loot I tried the Palmolive Anti-Hairfall Shampoo and Conditioner. I wanted to give the Pantene 3 Minute Miracle a try because I have seen a loot of positive reviews from Sample Room (also I wasn’t really sure if Palmolive was “The One” for me – in terms of conditioner ha).

pantene 3 minute miracle

During the first 3 days of using it, I really didn’t notice much difference as compared to when I used Palmolive. I decided to still continue using the product just to give it more time to have an effect on my hair. On the succeeding days though I noticed that my hair became softer, less tangles, and became very manageable. The results of my trial was superior to when I used Palmolive. This made me realize that the high price point for the product is just right. It may be a more expensive alternative to the usual conditioner products, but it definitely gives your hair the tlc it deserves!

 

Creamsilk Leave On Cream

Before this product, I already used their first gen leave on solutions (the green one). I used it because of my curly frizzy hair and it worked well for me. Flash forward to their new product! I was like a little girl when I got the loot because of this product. Without any hesitations I applied it on my hair waiting to achieve the results I got when I used the green leave on conditioner before. Did I achieve the promise they had on their product description? Nope!

After application, and I tried it on for 3 consecutive days, my hair felt heavy, it lost its life, and it didn’t help control my frizz (at all). This really disappointed me because the effect of the conditioner was countered by this product. Yes it is not greasy but your hair will feel greasy after a few hours of applying the product. Will I use this product again? No. E will be using this product, because he has the man bun fantasy and is growing out his hair.

 

 

Sample Room Loot 3 and 4

After a week of posting my review on Sample Room I got back the 1000 points I paid for, my 100 free points plus 12 points (1 point for submitting a review and 1 point for the approved review x 6). I wanted to hold on to the 1100+ points and wait for new products to be uploaded, but I realized that if I wanted to fully maximize the points I paid for I should get new items. I mean the points are just valid for 2 months so I needed to maximize it as much as I can.

From my previous post I shared that I spent P1100 (VIP membership plus shipping) , so let us add P280 to that (shipping for loot 3 and 4. This means that my total expense is at P1380. From my previous post, the total cost of the items I got was at P2755.60. Let us add:

Loot 3 Items

  1. Cream Silk Leave On Cream – 40 points (P49 x 2)
  2. Pantene 3 Minute Miracle Conditioner (Hair Fall Control) – 50 points (P59)
  3. Dermax Professional UV Active Water Burst Sunscreen SPF 45 + PA ++ – 500 points (P720)

Loot 4 Items

  1. Olay Total Effects Pore Minimizing CC Cream Medium – 300 points (P499)
  2. Burt’s Bees Nourishing Lip Balm with Mango Butter – 100 points (P325)
  3. Palmolive Naturals White  + Papaya Body Wash – 35 points (P80)

That will then be P2755.60 + P877 + P904. The total amount of products I got is now at P4,536.6 vs the total expense of P1380! That will mean I “earned” P3,156.6 worth of beauty products! Now this is a very efficient way of getting free items. At first you might buckle at the thought of paying the shipping fee, but consider the return of investment (sorry such a marketing/business term) and this will make Sample Room an extremely attractive investment.

Update for loot 3, I got it last Friday! So, will try all for 5 days, submit my review and get back 590 points! Eyeing that Olay Toner! That’s next up on my list, must have that before my points expire on Dec 10!!!

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