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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

In my lazy bones...

I have been a slacker lately...

Sorry for those of you who are checking my blog but doesn't seem to find anything new that is interesting to read...

Events and even milestones have passed but I just wasn't able to blog...Hope I can get back to blogging...

So what's up?

Bianca is already 5 months. She enjoyes rolling back and forth. She's such a happy baby...giggles everytime her name is called.

Margaux lives to her age of becoming terrible two! Our room is always a mess with all her toys all over. She started her summer class in Ahead Start last Monday. She had fun and I was all excited watching her from the back.

Dicky's sister from US is coming home together with her husband on May 2. We are excited for their coming. The last time they were here was during our wedding., which reminds me...we are actually celebrating our 5 Years Wedding Anniversary already by May 4. How time flies so fast!

5 years of being married and can't believe I'm already a mom of two beautiful kids...nothing planned yet for May 4. I am foregoing my planned trip since SIL will be here. We wanted to spend more time with them.

I'm sure we will have a fun trip with the kids to Subic this friday-saturday. We hope to catch Zoobic Safari and the Ocean Adventure.

We will fly to Boracay on May 12-14. Just a quick getaway with SIL, BIL and MIL. No kids this time! Unfortunately, we won't be able to vote during the election.

And because of this trip also, I need to get fit! I hate the bulges which aren't on the right places. I'm desperate. I enrolled to Fitness First yesterday. I started my workout today. Getting fit is expensive, I was compelled to buy also yesterday my gym outfits.

I hope my lazy bones in blogging won't happen with my exercising....Wish me luck!

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Bianca's Baptism and Margaux's 2nd Bday Joint Celebration...

This has been long overdue. Work has pretty occupied me again so my apologies for the delay of the supplier’s rating and celebration story. Brace yourself...this is long!

After giving birth last November 5 to another beautiful baby girl, we have decided to have Bianca baptized closer to Margaux’s birthday so it could just be a joint celebration. We could have done it April 1 since Margaux’s bday is March 30 but we felt that Bianca’s growing so fast and she would look like an 8month old baby by then. We had to move it few weeks earlier.

We had it last March 11 at Santuario de San Antonio Church for the baptism and the luncheon follows at the 2/F of Santuario de San Antonio Parish Center. Bday Celebration of Margaux happened at the same time.

I wanted to get a venue that would really be just close to each other as I don’t want our guests to have a hard time with the proximity.

Now for the supplier’s kwento and rating:

Invitations – Blow Up Babies Serendra -10++

We enrolled in their membership and got their baptismal package. I was happy with the output of the pictures. The shots are great. Ang cute both ni Margaux and Bianca sa mga kuha nila. The photographer were patient with kids. We got the invites from them na rin that comes from the baptismal package with an 8X10 picture and an 8x10 family portrait. Sulit sya actually.

Peninsula Manila – 10+++
We decided to come from Manila Pen and we checked in the day before. This is to use na rin my PenClub vouchers. We are supposed to get lang the Grand Deluxe Room cause that’s what indicated in the voucher. When I was checking in, the receptionist Diane, asked me if it’s our first time in the hotel. I said no and told her that we are frequent guests of the hotel. I told her also that infact, we had our wedding reception there. Syempre, chika ko rin sya na kaya kami nag-check in kasi binyag ng anak ko the following day. Hehehe, natuwa ata sa akin cause she upgraded us to Premier Suite! Hay, I was so happy to learn about it and she directed us to the 11th floor, where the big rooms are. Although she didn’t put us in the newly renovated wing, ok na rin cause the room she gave us was really big. Enjoy nga si Margaux sa pagtakbo eh. She noticed also na may kasama kaming 2 yayas so she even requested for an extra bed for us with no extra fee! She also accommodated our request for a late check-out since we will be coming nga from the party. Super happy. We got lucky. I made a commendation to her tuloy in the survey form in the room.

Santuario De San Antonio Church – 7

No question about the church, I love the church. In fact, it was the church where we also got married so it has significance to us. Why 7? Because of their staff. Buti nga binigyan ko pa sila ng 7! We have booked the church December 2006 pa lang. They gave us the 11:15am slot. March 7, Wednesday before the baptism, the staff Jasmine called our house to tell that we would have the baptism at 12nn since they double booked March 11 at 11:15am for another baptism. Dicky and I were in HK that time so I just learned about it when I called the house that evening. The following day, I made an overseas call clarifying the issue. This Jasmine said na nadouble book daw kami. I was disappointed with them. I told them, how could that be cause we booked December 2006 pa. Apparently, meron daw nakabook na earlier than us pero hindi daw nalagay sa book. Super nainis talaga ako. I have a feeling kasi na parishioner yung nagbook na yun kaya mas favorable sila. I asked them if it’s the case but they denied it. I was fuming mad while talking to her over the phone. My point was, we booked December 2006 pa. 3 months have passed and then Wednesday before the baptism na lang nila sasabihin sa amin na overbooked kami?! They could have advised us earlier. We had the invitations made, we told all our guests na about it. Ok, I might be over reacting cause it’s just 45mins anyway but still super palpak their admin. I had to pass the phone to my husband so he could be the one to talk to Jasmine. Finally, Jasmine said we could still have the baptism at 11:15am and we would take the main altar. Ok, the resolution is better actually so I was happy na. But come the event proper itself, we were not allowed in the main altar. So this Jasmine didn’t coordinate with the Sacristan and the Parish Priest. Hay, super disappointed talaga kami how they treated us. We were all infront already together with the ninangs and ninongs and then they said hindi raw puede. Sa baptisry, meron nang nauna sa amin. Yun nga yung isa pa nila binook! So we didn’t have a choice but to wait for the other baptism to finish. We started late tuloy. Buti na lang, nabawi ng priest, Fr. Willy from the church also, deeply apologizes to us about it. He said he will reprimand Jasmine. They didn’t want us to have the baptism in the main altar cause meron palang mass ng 12nn so we would be hurried up if we would have it there. The following week when I went back to the office to get the baptismal certificate, I confronted Jasmine talaga. Super inis ako sa kanya so medyo natahimik sya when I was nagging her na. Sorry pero nag-nag talaga ako. She apologized din naman and said nga na napagalitan din daw sya ni Fr. Willy. Hay, she should have learned her lesson about it.

Santuario de San Antonio Parish Center – 8
Ms. Susan, the admin assistant handling the Parish Center is a better point person than Jasmine. Dicky actually didn’t like the Parish Center cause it’s old na. He wanted North Forbes Clubhouse sana but I don’t want na magmove pa the guests from the church vicinity. Medyo old na nga kasi the Parish Center pero ok na rin cause it was decorated nicely (separate supplier). Medyo nainitan lang ako when inside, although, there were about 5 big aircons naman. Well, marami lang kasi kami ulit guests.

Catering – Josiah’s Catering - 10++
In looking for venue, yan lang ang criteria ko…na puede ang Josiah’s Catering. Hehehe. I was happy with the food and even our guests. They enjoyed the Mongolian Barbeque so much. Some of our guests thought that it’s a separate catering we got all together for the Mongolian kasi daw parang hindi nauubos. I was happy with my food selection which Tita Jet (owner) suggested herself. Syempre, may choco fountain din and we got it from them also. There was a separate buffet area for the kids but their food were served. Super yummy their baked spaghetti. Kita sa pictures, how kids love the food. And syempre, overflow na naman ako sa guests but didn’t worry much cause they really prepared for more than 150 guests. Hindi naubos ang food, may nauwi pa kami actually. The staff were courteous as well and the account manager Michelle was there also overseeing everything.

Balloon Decors and Host – Yanple – Apple Cabel (n@wie) – 10++
I was very happy with what Apple did in the venue. As I said, kahit luma na the place, it looked fantastic. I love the balloon ceiling decors she made. You can view it in the pictures. I told her I want flower designs in the ceiling. She made it even beyond my expectation. Ang ganda ng designs, not the usual flower design lang. Pati the pillars she did, I love it. Hindi rin the usual spiral pillars. The centerpieces are great also, I love the mylar balloons she put. Pati the decors outside the entrance, ganda rin, I love the 3d cube boxes with feeding bottle. Sa amin na pala yun after the party. I thought she’s getting it back pa. Worth it for the price I paid. In fact, she’s very reasonable in prices. That’s why I’m booking her again for Bianca’s 1st bday naman on November. She even gave an extra pillar as her gift for my daughters. Tsaka, ginandahan nya talaga. She even helped us put up the tarpaulins. And then she was quick to fix and add additional 5 centerpieces cause I had 15 tables eh apparently 10 lang pala ang napagawa ko sa kanya. Hay, nakalimutan ko kasing magpa-add. Buti na lang she had some left materials pa. She also helped me in booking the host. We got a female host. I am not particular about the host kasi nga simple celebration lang for Margaux’s birthday. In fact, ayaw na dapat ni Dicky but I just insisted. He was surprised actually to know that I got a host pa. The host was good naman. I’m so bad, forgot her name. You can just ask apple siguro if you are interested. She came in like in a fairy godmother outfit. She was able to capture naman the interest of everyone.

Baptismal and Birthday Cake – Elaine Shih of Quintbelles (n@wie) also – 10++
I learned about Elaine from the Kid’s fair in Edsa Shangrila Hotel. Nag-sample sila ng cupcakes dun and nasarapan ako. I ordered a 2-layer baptismal cake for Bianca and a book birthday cake for Margaux. I also got 100pcs for her bite size cupcakes. I am a cake lover so particular ako sa taste and Elaine didn’t disappoint me. Super yummy the chocolate cake. Yun lang ang cake flavor na gusto ko anyway. It’s super moist. Yummy talaga. Ok din ang cupcakes, it was put in a stand. Ganda ng ayos in the table with the two other cakes. She was easy to talk to. We just met once to order and finalize the design and then it was executed perfectly. Her rates are reasonable also. As I mentioned, yummy the cake! That is important.

Photographer – Ging Lorenzo – 10+
Ging did my maternity portraits and I was really keen on getting her. Apparently, I also wanted John Aguas, cause he did Margaux’s bday. Finally, I decided to get her para din ma-try ko. I was happy with the pictures. It turned out parang two photographer pa sila cause her fiancĂ©e, Pete also takes pictures so ang daming angles ng kuha nila. In fact, nasunod yung gusto ko to take pics of all details of the party. One of them, I think Pete was already in the Parish Center taking pictures of the venue and the details while wala pang guests. Nakuhanan tuloy ng maganda. Then during the baptismal rites mismo, 2 silang kumukuha so daming shots in different angles. The advantage, you pay them for the price of 1 photographer. Then she gives about 25pcs of her preselected shots as prints plus of course the CD for the raw files. She actually gave me more than 25pcs. Natuwa daw sya cause daming magandang shots. It takes a while lang for her to give you the proof cause I think she polishes it pa. But when I requested her to give it earlier, she agreed naman and I’m thankful she accommodated my request.

Videographer – John Aguas – 10+
I was happy that John also accommodated my request that I would just get his video coverage. He sent good and friendly videographers who arrived early in the hotel. I was happy with the output cause daming maganda shots, in fact, artistically done pa ang iba. After a week, John was texting me na as to where to send the video. I was glad that the videographer captured most of the highlights of the event.

AVP – Jason Magbanua – 10+++
This came in as a gift of course. Super thanks to the MAN! Syempre, highlight na naman the AVP he did for Bianca. I just sent him the pictures in CD which I just did Monday na before the baptism. It was perfect! It came as a surprise also to us for the content cause I got it in the morning na of the event. Pina-deliver pa nya sa venue. I’m finding a way to upload it in Youtube so I can also share with you.

Projector and Screen – I-Tech Digital Systems (899-9600; 09229111550) – 10++
This supplier actually sent lang a proposal to me a last February and requesting if I can consider them as projector and screen supplier. Told them to send me their quote so we can file in our list. So I decided to use them initially to test their equipment and check on their reliability before recommending them to any of our clients. Yup, I took the risk for my own party. But I was happy with them. One call to make the booking, they faxed to me right away the contract. Didn’t even requested for downpayment, sa function na lang daw mismo. Two days before, the secretary even called me to confirm the time of set-up. They were on time during the set-up also. The technician was also courteous. They rental rate is also inclusive na of a dvd player. Everything was cued before hand even the pictures na pinakita namin na naka-loop lang. Reliable one.

Tarpaulin/Banners/Lootbag Tags – Melisse Baylosis – 10++
Melisse has been my regular supplier already. She was quick to do the layout at kahit press na with time, she still delivers on time. Ako ang parating delay sa kanya in giving materials but she was able to really do it nicely. I was in love for the tarpaulin ni Bianca. Ganda ng kinalabasan. Last minute, I also asked her to do a lootbag tag. Basta happy ako sa kanya cause kabisado na nya yung pangungulit ko.

Bracelet Souvenirs for the Baptism – Angeli Sia of Crafts and Creations (09173447269) – 10++
I have known Angeli few years back. We were batch mates teaching classes in Businessmaker in Ortigas. I encouraged her to enter the wedding industry also and offer her trinkets as souvenirs. Super sulit the souvenirs I got from her. Ganda ng bracelet. All girls love it. It was put in a nice pink box pa. She delivered early also, considering I ordered late na rin. She was able to do 100 bracelets by herself in 2weeks, eh working din sya ha.

Sound System – Sound Syndrome (Elfren Uy -4177075; 7260962) – 10+
One week before, I realized na wala pala kaming sound system pa. The venue doesn’t have a reliable one. Just called him about it and buti na lang his available pa. They arrived early also to set-up. Elfren was there mismo to personally man the sound system booth. Easy to talk to and reliable as well.

Small stuff:

Gifts for Ninongs and Ninangs -Got it in HongKong
I got cashmere pashmina for the Ninangs and a CD Holder for the Ninongs. Bought lang a nice green gift wrapper in Natl Bookstore and had it tied with a personalized ribbon with name of Bianca.

Personalize Ribbon with name of Bianca- Personalized Greeting in Glorietta

Guestbook - DigiPrints in Shangrila Mall
Gave them a cd that includes all the pictures to put per page. They did the layout and printing. It was inexpensive and nice naman ang kinalabasan.

Dresses of Bianca and Margaux - both the yellow dresses and the pink dresses are from Purple Tag. They have branches inside SM Makati, Greenhills and Market Market. Many complimented the dresses of my daugthers.

Baptismal Gown - a hand-me-down baptismal gown which I got for Margaux. It's a Pina baptismal gown which I got from Rustan's.

Lootbags, Loot items, Prizes – Divisoria Mall, URC Company Store and Toy Kingdom –
One trip to Divi Mall and tinapos ko na lahat. Got lang a green plastic paper bag for the lootbag cause sabi ko nga simple celebration lang. Got most of the prizes in Divi Mall but also got nice ones in Toy Kingdom for the major prizes and for the raffle. I got chips from URC Company Store para mas mura than buying in groceries.

The kids had fun during the party. They all went home with prizes. A number of friends said their kids enjoyed the party cause magaganda raw ang mga toys. I know how important toys/prizes for kids so really had to make sure na kahit sa divi ko lang nabili ang iba eh, maganda pa rin the toys.

You can view all pictures at:

Now, have to prepare naman for the 1st bday celebration of Bianca on November. I’m getting excited again in preparing for another party. It’s a challenge that it has to be as good as the first birthday of Margaux cause our family and friends are actually expecting for it already.

Thanks for reading this far.