To all the Dogs we’ve loved before…and now!

I am a proud fur mom of a Shih Tzu princess type breed. I have had 2 other dogs before but are no longer with me as the first one died (due to loneliness) and the third one was dognapped. Only the 2nd one is with me now and I can say this one is for keeps!

My first fur baby was named Shampu. I named her that because of the pricey shampoo I have to buy just to maintain her fur. When we moved to a different house, we took her to the province and had to be away from us. Last thing I knew, she already died as she refused to eat.

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I then adapted Kofi in 2015 as the original owner can only keep 2-3 dogs in their condo. I chose him among all the litter as he is the only one with a unique gray-mixed color. And pretty adorable too! Especially the eyes!


He was then pledged to my niece who is arriving to the Philippines from Qatar as she said she wanted to care for a dog. Unfortunately, Kofi and I were already smitten to each other that I couldn’t let him go anymore. And so he stayed.

In 2016, I once again adapted another Shih Tzu and I named him Xinamon. This one is also a unique litter because of her brownish red fur. Like a balayage one. Lol

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Kofi and Xinamon are perfect match. They always go together wherever one is. They never fought nor bite each other. They don’t get angry over food. When we go to the mall, I seldom use leash on them as they really walk beside you like a trained dog. There are no formal trainings for my babies. Just signs on when to stop, where to eat and when it’s time to go.

Five months with us, Xinamon was dognapped from our house. We’ve searched but to no avail. And so we just have to let her go. We just hope that whoever got her, is taking care of her real good.

So, I am left with Kofi to care of. This fur baby has a real odd behavior which makes him an adorable love.  He likes sleeping at our feet at night and snuggles behind your back.  When he eats, he does not grab the food instantly.  He will smell it first then bite it gently out of your hands.  Runs away and eat alone.  He does not like other people when I am around but hangs out with them when I am gone.  He does not run when the door opens.  While walking, he walks with us even without leash.  If he leads the way, he make sure that we are following by checking us out.  If he sees other dogs, we is just snobbish.  He is allowed to hang out with us at Coffee Bean shops.

I am eager to adopt one more buddy soon!

To be a fur mom:

  1. Be patient when he starts to get messy.  From poops/weewees, baths and fur drying, feeding, vaccines, costly shopping for maintenance.  He is going to be your nth son/daughter so treat them well.
  2. Prepare to take him to walks so he gets exercise too.
  3. He needs cuddle and care.  If he is playful, then be playful too.
  4. Teach him the basics.  You don’t have to be a dog whisperer like Caesar Millan.  Teach him things he can easily understand the first time.
  5. Take lots of pictures for memories!
  6. Adopt.  Don’t shop.  As they say at CARA Welfare Philippines.

Let me know if you want to adopt and be a fur mom too!

 

Seol Bang

Korean Ice!

First of all, you simply need to know how they make the ice so smooth and fine never minding how this dessert makes your teeth sensitive the fact that it’s really cold and oh so yummy!

Presentation is key. You have got to order the right stuff before you can truly appreciate Bingsu!

We ordered the Salted Caramel Cookie (to share) just because Salted Caramel is a popular choice for anything caramel. Strawberry Cheesecake is a good choice too! And some coffee for someone who needs a quick fix.

And yes! Goofing around is allowed.

Here are some of their choices too! But don’t be fooled ‘coz these are just for display purposes only.

Katzikat Recommends: They have Korean food but I haven’t tried them yet. If you come here, just come here for the Bingsu and the stuff to goof around. Make sure you give back the props when you leave!

Check my rating in my Zomato profile:

Seol Bang Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Mozu

This restaurant is very near where I work and this is our immediate go-to place whenever we crave for Filipino Dishes and have a little bit of something to spare. I have been to this restaurant many times but this is the only time I am reviewing it.

For those times i visited them, I always order a different dish. I have tried their Grilled Liempo, their Crispy Bagnet and my latest is their Beef Tapa. While my regular dinner buddy always order the Lechon Laing, I’m telling you, that all those choices we made, there are no regrets.

Our orders were promptly taken by kuya and our food came in in flash too. If the kuya is on stand by like this, then there is really no reason for any delay in your orders, agree? haha

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Katzikat Recommends: If I can try all their food, I would. I hope the next time I’m coming to this restaurant, I am drinking and not eating. The Al Fresco dining is +++

Check my rating in my Zomato profile:

Mozu Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

6 Reasons why keeping a journal never goes out of style!

Keeping a journal is a fun and good alternative to blogging/vlogging.  This used to be the way of recording important data or events and this can be passed on to your next generation.  It’s also a way of expressing your thoughts and feelings.  Thoughts and feelings that you wanted to stay private.

I do keep a journal.  Unlike a diary, I only write about the events that I think has made a significance in my day.  You don’t have to record everything. Even if blogging is already the way to go, here are the reasons why I still keep a journal.

 1.  My journal reminds me that it’s alright to make mistakes.  One of the things that opens up our maturity is that we are able to accept the fact that we can make mistakes and it’s up to us to correct it.  We may have corrected our mistakes but it will always leave a mark.  This mark will serve as a reminder that though you make mistakes, your attitude towards it will what makes the difference.

2.  My journal serves as my best friend.  I can write all the thoughts I can’t say out loud.  Accepts whatever you want to say.  Secrets will stay secrets.  Remember, everyone has the right to keep a piece of secret deep down their hearts that will remain a mystery.

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Kitty keeps my secret…

3.  My journal helps me practice my handwriting.  Literally.  Instead of typing you fingers away, work fingers away with you pen and pages.  Sometimes, we are so used to using keyboards that writing becomes tedious already.

4.  My journal allows me to make crazy doodles coming straight from my imagination.  It’s funny to sometimes be able to draw something, even though they are not perfect, projects what’s exactly on your mind in that current state of mind.

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The best doodles I can ever make.

5.  My journal allows me to paste tiny pieces of souvenirs.  A receipt from a restaurant from a meal you shared with someone you love can be a good memory to keep.  Or a picture from your instax camera with your best friend so as to remember the wonderful day you shared together.

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The 3 white roses…

6.  My journal will not be corrupted.  The issue with online journals is that when your storage crashes, you might not be able to retrieve it.  There will be online solution of course, but the stress that you feel thinking that you may or may not retrieve it anymore is frustrating.

I hope these reasons will convince you to start making journals.  Try it too!  and if you do decide to start making one, make sure you get the leather one.  Make it personalized.  Choose something that will last, just like the memories you wanted to keep.

And one more thing, once you go back to the writings you made in the past, you will be amazed about the things you have written, may it be ridiculous or heartfelt.  Trust me.  Here is an excerpt from one of my writings and it took me back to that day when I wrote it and the feeling is unbelievable!

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Suggestion on where to buy/order:

Alunsina Handbound Books – the smell of leather is the best smell whenever you start working on your thoughts.  Nothing makes you excited to start writing your journal especially if these are designed by Alunsina.  Check out their FB page for availability of journals, designs and colors.  Make it personalized!

Surat Journals – They have this leather pouch where you can put your other trinkets.  Surat means Write in Ilocano dialect.  Fitting!

Papersandtschai – they have these colorful journals and planners you can choose from.  Aren’t those drawings gorgeous?

Moleskin – have you heard of this notebook?  If you did, try getting one of their notebooks.  The leaves of the notebooks can withstand liquid spills so you don’t need to worry about blotted inks in case of accidents.  Prepare to shell out a bit more though.

Japan Tourist Visa Application for Filipinos – from Single Entry to Multiple Entry

We first applied for a Japanese Visa in 2015 when my son and I went to Tokyo. It was a gift for my son’s 7th birthday. We were not able to go there during his exact birthday but it’s never too late to celebrate it anyways.

Japan Visa for Filipinos needs to be applied via listed accredited Travel Agencies only. Japan embassy does not accept walk-in or personal application. You can chose from the list of accredited Travel agencies here.

For our application, we applied thru the agency Discovery Tours, located in Makati City. Our application costs us P800.00 only. By far this the cheapest application I have inquired to among all other travel agencies from the Japan list. They were also able to have our visa approved in 3 days only. We were approved for Single Entry only, with 15 days stay. The visa is valid only for 3 months.

So, here’s what you need to do to apply for Japan Visa:
1. Select your travel agency near you – From the agency’s website, you can find the steps on how to apply for the visa. You can also refer to their list of requirements here.

2. Prepare your documentations – I am a private employee when I applied so I prepared my COE, ITR, Birth Certificate, Marriage Certificate, Bank Certificate. Of course do not forget your passport valid for 6 months during your travel dates.

*for Birth and Marriage Certificate – make sure that they are recent copies obtained from PSA (Philippine Statistics Authority).  It will not be accepted if the certificates are more than 1 year old.

*for Bank Certificate and Bank Statements – there is no required amount set by the embassy.  Make sure that you bank has enough balance to prove you can sustain your trip to Japan.  My advise is to always keep it realistic.

3. Fill up the application form along with a photo with specifications set by the embassy. It is important that you follow the guidelines for the photo requirements.

4. Create an itinerary – the form can be obtained from the agency itself. You need to fill your day to day activities and the location of your activities.

5. If you are being sponsored by a Japanese national, you need to comply with additional requirements like Guarantee letter, Proof of relationship, Bank Certificate and ITR of guarantor.  Your guarantor can also be someone from the Philippines but that guarantor will have to provide Bank Certificate, Proof of Relationship and other proof of income.  Your guarantor does not need to be traveling with you.  Your guarantor can be your friend, but you have to provide proof of relationship.  Pictures will do.

6. You need to apply directly. The agents from the agency are very helpful with your needs. They will also answer questions you might have in order for you to fill in your details correctly.

7. The agency also offers tour options you may want to check rather than doing your Japan trip a DIY. You can also purchase passes that you can use in Japan rails.

When our visa was already released, we were notified by the agency to pick it up personally. You need to bring identification and the acknowledgement receipt with you when you claim your passport. This receipt is given to you by the agency after your application process.

Japan Visa for the second time….

So, basically, my son and I went back to Japan but this time, we went to Osaka and Nagoya. We applied for the multiple visa as we already were previously approved with the single entry. The requirements will still be the same, except that there is an additional form you need to fill up stating the reason why you wanted to apply for a Multiple entry visa. When I answered the question, I said that I would like to explore more of Japan in the next 1-2 years. That I am targeting to visit Sapporo during the winter etc. I guess you can provide other reasons as long as they are legally acceptable. Your application could even be more successful if you were previously approved with a Japan visa provided that you have no immigration issues with them in the past.

So, there you go!  That’s what I went through to obtain a Japan visa. Let me know you if have questions so I may somehow assist you before you start your application.  No fees required.  🙂

My Taytay Haul – ditching Divi for it!

As you check clothes for sale from online sellers, you can’t help but notice that some of these dresses are becoming cheaper for their design. And if you are these online sellers, you must be getting the supplies so cheap that you can sell them at competitive prices.

That’s when I learned about Taytay Garments and Korean Clothes – located in Taytay Rizal, which is rivaling that of Divisoria or any tiangges around the metro.

It was my birthday in 2018 when instead of splurging my money on mall-priced items, I decided to try my budget in Taytay to which I only set P2,000 as my budget and find out how many garments I can buy with it. At such price, I can only get a pair of shoes from either Payless or the Department store and maybe a blouse from uniqlo or H&M. And yes! I buy my clothes at tiangges or in Divisoria. I would always prefer to buy my clothes here rather than malls (unless it’s a special occasion I am preparing for).

There are few things you need to remember when you go to Taytay for clothes hunting.

1. Taytay is a supplier’s haven. You can buy clothes at wholesale price or you can mix and match items to get the wholesale price.
2. The tiangge area is not a mall. It’s an enclosed area where there are different stalls from different sellers. Each of these enclosures are given a name – Bagpi, Municipal Tiangge, MySeoul, Freedom Bazaar, CME, IGPAI etc. You don’t have to worry as these tiangges are connected to each other. Some, you need to cross the street to transfer.
3. If you are bringing your car, there are no parking slots available from near the tiangges. You can secure a parking spot near the market or park in one of the fastfood restaurant and just pay the guard (haha). What I did before is that we parked at Chowking, ate at the resto and went to the tiangge. Left our car at the parking lot of Chowking.
4. Bring your shopping bags. Most of the sellers will put your item in plastics. Since I planned to use all my 2K, i know that I will be buying a lot of items. So, to avoid using plastics, please bring your shopping bags/ecobags.
5. Wear comfortable shoes. You will be walking into a lot tiangges and the last thing you want is your shoes killing your feet!
6. Use a sling bag for your valuables. The place is always crowded. Chances of getting pickpocketed is always high.
7. If you are going there during the daytime, use light clothing. This area is not airconditioned.  It can really get hot during the daytime.
8.  If you are going for the night market, not all the tiangges are open.

When we got there, I browsed thru aisle after aisle of clothes!  So overwhelming!  Prices are amazing and the design are also up-to-date.  These are RTW clothes and not second hand clothes.

Here are my first buy!

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P60 pesos each at wholesale price

This square pants is worth P150 each.  I saw a similar pants when I was in Bangkok costing around Bht120 so almost the same.  Same pants in greenhills will cost around P400.

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Next, I hunted for leggings that I can use as sweat pants in the gym with matching t-shirts.  The leggings costs P180 for 3 pcs and the tshirts costs P60 pesos each.

I now move on to the dresses I scored for this venture!

The white floral costs me P200

The Blue semi-maong-texture dress is P250

The Red floral is P120

The Black tight dress is P100

I also scored this floral blazer for semi-casual occasions for only P100.

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And for some summer blouses, these are easy to spot in the tiangge but difficult to select the right design as they are all good!  All these are for P60 each at whole sale price (minimum of 3 items).

And for my final buy, I got these really comfy shorts I can wear for sleeping.  These shorts really has smooth texture and maybe you can wear them as they are lol.

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So my total for the day is around P1, 940!  The change is for water while walking and some small bites as the tiangge have area for food too!

These items also grabbed my attention but did not buy them anymore as I need to stick to my budget.

So, start saving up a few pieces of your bucks and head to taytay to get good deals on your clothes.  By the way, I wasn’t able to go to all the tiangges as there’s just too many!

Enjoy your shopping!

Starbucks – Grace Mall

This Starbucks is the closest coffee shop to my heart. Not just because of its proximity to where I live but because the ambiance is just so perfect I feel closer to home (literally).

High ceiling windows, comfy chairs, wide counters, lots of sockets for laptop users and al fresco area (very good area when I bring my dog along) and of course the never ending array of drinks they offer. Lots of promos and introducing limited time drinks, this what makes Starbucks on top of its game.

I just would like to share this cute little matcha offering they had when we were hanging out there.

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The drink are on introductory stage at that time. This is now the drink that we know as Matcha Green Tea Creme Frap. So nice!

Please work on your internet offering soon!

check my rating in my zomato profile:

Starbucks Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Korean J Grill – Tomas Morato

Korean Restaurants are a hit nowadays. With the booming K-pop culture in the Philippines now, it’s not a new thing that we become interested not only with Koreanovelas and Korean novelty items but also the Food this country can influence.

There was one restaurant in mind when we set out our hunt in QC area. Unfortunately, we were 16th in line! No way were gonna wait that long. So we decided to just go for the next available restaurant nearby. Then we came across this one as we are lucky enough to get the last parking spot available.

We were 2nd in line. That’s tolerable. While waiting for our table, we are already checking out the menu and decided on the Herb Samgyupsal and their marinated chicken.

The side dishes are unlimited as what other K restos are. Except of course if it’s an all-out Korean buffet.

This is how our meals looks like right on the grill.

We also ordered the Ramyun (so cheap) ’cause we thought that the samgyupsal would not be enough

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Our ambiance looks like this.

Katzikat Recommends: I already went back to this restaurant twice. The second time still did not disappoint. Lettuce is so fresh and crunchy!!!!

Check my rating in my zomato profile:

Korean J Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Nadai Fujisoba

My sister said she haven’t been to a Japanese restaurant before so I took her to this quaint Jap resto at SM Aura. We have our grandchild along so we have to consider the kind of food we order (spicy, salty etc) so it also fits to his taste.

I ordered for one of their Donburi Bowls – the Katsudon while my sister gor the Gyu Don as per my recommendation. She likes beef so, appropriately, Gyu Don is the best to go. She liked the beef. It was tender and yummy. I also enjoyed my bowl of pork and the eggs is just right for the taking.

As an additional food on our table, we also had the Karaage Soba Udon bowl so we can have something for our grandchild. The servings are big by the way. So we had to take home the Noodle as we can’t finish it anymore.

Katzikat Recommends: If only I can order all the food from their menu, I would devour them all. Starting off with the Katsudon, like I always do in every Japanese Restaurants I go to is a must for any rice lovers. Suggestion though not to partner your Katsudon with noodles specially if they have very big servings.

Check my ratings in my Zomato profile:

Nadai Fujisoba Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato