Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Expecting During a Pandemic: Husbands Now Allowed Inside Delivery Room at St. Luke's

I missed out a lot while expecting during a pandemic. I didn't get to enjoy those fun baby fairs or experience a baby shower. I found myself extra paranoid every time I step out of the house. And getting the food I crave was, more often than not, a challenge. But the saddest thing this new normal changed for pregnant women is not having their husbands or partners beside them during labor and delivery. I wanted to share this precious moment with R. And luck was on our side when I found out that one companion during delivery is now allowed at St. Luke's! 

Two days to go before we meet Sam!

I was beyond thrilled when I accidentally found out that husbands or partners can now enter the delivery room. It was late at night when I was browsing through Glam-O-Mamas' Facebook community page when someone inquired about a swab test for her husband as he'll accompany her in the delivery room. She was asking fellow moms if paying PHP4,300 (walk-in) or PHP6,500 (drive-thru) is worth it given its short validity of five days for dads or dads-to-be (versus two weeks for moms). 

Monday, October 19, 2020

Takeout Picks: Black Scoop

Black Scoop is one of my go-to milk tea shops since 2018. With its delectable fruit teas and addictive milk teas, it's hard not to grab a few drinks whenever I pass by a branch. I know that they have savory meals too, but I only got to try some of its dishes during the community quarantine. And since I now know that they have good chicken poppers, I decided to grab some again after my OB appointment. 

Hello, Black Scoop.

For a milk tea shop, Black Scoop offers a good range of dishes to complement its sweet drinks. Its menu includes rice meals, sandwiches, pasta, and snacks. 

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Pregnancy Journey: Covid-19 Walk-In vs. Drive-Thru Swab Test Experience at St. Luke's Medical Center QC

Anticipation. This is probably the best word to describe the stage R and I are in these past two weeks. From a false labor scare to scheduling my swab test (a new normal protocol) a tad too early, we've reached the part where we're itching to see our little one. But Sam doesn't seem to be ready yet that I had to redo my swab test as the first result's validity already expired. And to shake things up, I decided to try its walk-in swab test instead of taking drive-thru twice.

Hello again, Swab Test!

One of the perks of giving birth at St. Luke's Medical Center Quezon City is that your required swab test before delivery is complimentary. You can even choose drive-thru without any additional cost. However, those who hit over two weeks and haven't delivered yet have to take another swab test. And this time, you have to pay for it. 

Scheduling an appointment for my swab test this time around was not as convenient as the first one. I felt less prioritized as I had to do things on my own. But it was still pretty straightforward and quick as everything was done via St. Luke's ehub portal. 

Monday, October 12, 2020

Underrated Drinks: Dakasi's Creme Avocado

With baby Sam's arrival getting nearer and nearer, I find myself wanting to indulge in cold treats every single day. From ice cream to frozen cake, I just want to have them all before I start ge lai. And I'm so happy to be able to try Dakasi before I give birth. 

Hello, Dakasi.

Dakasi has been named as one of the underrated milk tea brands in Manila. As one of the minor players in the milk tea industry, it's easy to forget Dakasi when asked for the top of mind boba brands.

Thursday, October 8, 2020

Takeout Favorite: Ooma's Ebi and Soft Shell Crab Tempura Aburi Bake

It has been seven months since I last dined in and traveled. And as much as I tell myself that it's better to stay cooped up indoors, I can't help miss the "old" normal. Thankfully, many restaurants made it a lot bearable for us by making takeouts a bit more interesting, just like Ooma with its bento meals and its lip-smackingly good aburi bake!

Hello, Ooma.

Ooma is no stranger to those who love Japanese fusion dishes. Its wide array of maki and entrees guarantees that there's something for everyone. And for me, it has always been its soft shell crab taco maki and hanger steak.

Thursday, October 1, 2020

Motherhood Diaries: WaterWipes

From a distant future to nine months, then a few weeks, and now, days, I can't believe that I'll be seeing my little one soon. I have to be honest, I never saw myself as mommy material. But things changed as soon as I found out that I'm pregnant and that I'll be a mom. I became diligent in reading the ingredients list as well as familiarizing myself with the chemicals to avoid, a habit I only got to build after seeing two lines twice! I now think of my baby, who is solely dependent on me. Thankfully, several brands in the market meet my plan to stick with all-natural products. And a new addition to my baby bag is WaterWipes.

Hello, WaterWipes.

WaterWipes was born out of a father's passion for his daughter. 

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Food Delivery: The Pastry Puff's Portuguese Egg Tarts

I still remember my first bite of egg tart. It was when I was strolling along the busy streets of Binondo and spotted one of the famous egg tart brands in Manila. All it took was one bite for me to be addicted to this delectable Portuguese-style egg tarts. I tried several other brands after. But nothing came close to the one I had in Chinatown. That was until I got to try The Pastry Puff.

Hello, The Pastry Puff

I have never heard of The Pastry Puff till Jen of Hungry Apron PH introduced it to me.

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Pregnancy Journey: My Covid-19 Swab Test Experience at St. Luke's Medical Center QC

Being pregnant during a pandemic could be a blessing and a curse. Though I enjoyed the break I got from the two-month lockdown and skipping the grueling daily commute to and from the office, there are just too many changes and new normal to keep up with. From prenatal check-ups to giving birth, that makes the whole pregnancy journey became not as bright and happy, especially for first-time moms like me. And one of the things I dreaded the most is the hospital policy of pregnant women having swab test prior to giving birth. Hearing and reading about how stressful the experience could be made me worried. But to my surprise, it was actually not that bad thanks to the efficient team behind St. Luke's Medical Center Quezon City's drive-thru team. 

Hello, Covid-19 Swab Test!

My pregnancy journey has been relatively smooth throughout the whole 36 weeks. Though there were minor dizzy spells, weird cravings, and back pains, I never encountered anything serious or problematic. I'm so thankful too as the last thing I want to do is go to the hospital for a series of laboratory tests. My OB-GYNE visits (outside the hospital) alone was enough to make me paranoid. (I refuse to take the lift and climb up five flights of stairs every time I have an appointment.)

Monday, September 28, 2020

Quarantine Favorite: Hungry Apron PH's Hainanese Chicken

Time flies by so fast. I can't believe that I'll be giving birth in a few weeks. And as much as I dread it, I am considering to do ge lai as it is said to help post-partum. But I discovered a dish that I think would make me look forward to eating gingery food!

Hello, Hungry Apron PH

I love Hainanese chicken. Sadly, I seldom find good ones here in Manila. More often than not, I'd end up having dry or bland ones that are highly dependent on the ginger spring onion sauce. Thankfully, the brilliant people behind Matt's Waffles decided to share their amazing Hainanese chicken with us.

Sunday, September 27, 2020

Quarantine Favorite: Butter and Cheese Creations' Red Velvet Cheesecake

Being pregnant made me crave sweet food all the time. I developed an insatiable appetite for anything chocolate as soon as I hit the second trimester. And my OB-GYNE is not happy about it. I try my best to curb my desire for this sweet treat to no avail. Thankfully, some shops offer cakes and other desserts with less guilt. And one of my current obsessions now is Butter and Cheese Creations' Red Velvet Cheesecake. 

Hello, Butter and Cheese Creations.

Butter and Cheese Creations is an online cake shop owned by Christine Tan, a pilot mommy who has a knack at baking delectable cakes. She decided to pursue her passion for baking during the pandemic. Her current menu of cakes includes red velvet cheesecake, carrot cake, caramel custard cake, super fudge chocolate, mud cake, and ube cake.

Friday, September 25, 2020

Guilt-Free Snack: K-Radish Pickled Radish

I used to think that all kimchis are made and taste the same. My first ever bite of kimchi was beyond appalling that I refused to eat kimchi for almost a decade! Talk about the saying 'first impression lasts'. But after discovering how great ssambaps are, I became open to the idea of having kimchi with my Korean BBQ. I even fell in love with kimchi fried rice to the point of having it for breakfast at least once a week. And one of my favorite snacks now is Kimchi Radish by K-Radish.

Hello, K-Radish.

K-Radish is the brainchild of two doctors who know their way in the kitchen. Drs. Harris and Marie Co came up with the idea of offering pickled radish during the nationwide quarantine and thought that it would be a perfect snack to have while watching our favorite K-Dramas.