Category Archives: La-la-life

A Magical Day at Disney California Adventure

Last May, Kurt surprised Ezra and me with two tickets to Disney’s California Adventure.  He told us that the tickets were his birthday gift to us.  Ezra had just celebrated her birthday the month before, but my birthday wasn’t until September, which was 4 months away.  I wasn’t about to turn down free tickets to California Adventure, so if Kurt wanted to give me his gift months in advance, then so be it :D

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Our ticket receipts.  Kurt paid for them online but we had to go to the ticket booth at the park to claim them.

We left the house early that morning to make it in time for the park’s opening

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Cute signs with Disney characters in the parking lot

We parked in the covered structure, but I noticed that they also had this HUGE parking lot outside

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We made our way over the the trams, which we had to ride in order to get to the park’s entrance

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The last time Ezra and I were in California Adventure was back in 2006.  She had just turned 18 so my parents took us there that summer to celebrate. I remember there used to be huge stone letters which spelled “CALIFORNIA” at the entrance.  Apparently they’re gone now.

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Entrance to the park
We took a couple of pictures with the GoPro before going inside

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This guy was very interested in our monopod and jumped in the shot with us:

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Hello fellow Disney lover :D

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Got our map and tickets ready. Let’s do this!

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Our first stop of the day was the gift shop. When we were younger, Ezra and I would be jealous of the little girls we saw walking around the park wearing Minnie Mouse ears. Our parents would never get them for us because they thought it was a waste of money. Now that Ezra and I are earning our own money, there was nothing to stop us from getting them for ourselves :D

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There were loads of designs to choose from!  We had a lot of fun trying on different styles and figuring out which ones to get.

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Ezra and Kurt thought the bride and groom ears were cute

After playing around for a while, we walked our with our new set of ears

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In the end Ezra went with the classic Minnie Mouse ears while I chose something a little fancier.  (Yes, I paid more than I would have liked and I haven’t worn them again since this day, but look how adorable they are!)

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INSTABITS : September 2014

October already?? I feel like September just flew by! But at the same time, so much has happened that I can’t believe that only a month had passed.

Rurouni Kenshin : Kyoto Inferno came out around the end of August.  Ezra and I were excited to see it but we waited a bit for the crowd to die down before heading to the cinema.  The movie was amazing! Satoh Takeru is the perfect actor to play Kenshin, and the director did a great job translating the manga/anime to film.  The fight scenes were so intense that they had me on the edge of my seat.

I was on a Kenshin high after the movie, and I couldn’t get enough of Satoh Takeru.  After 6 months of having Kim Soo Hyun as my lock screen, he’s now been replaced by Himura Battousai XD

One reason I love September is because it’s my birth month :D I had a simple celebration (blog entry HERE), but I still got a few pleasant surprises from friends and family – like this note that Davies left on my office door while I was out for lunch.

I also received a rose and a sweet note from Amie

And my favorite Sans Rival cake from the family :)

I was most surprised when I opened my email that evening and found an animated e-card from Princess Cruises :) I love that they give their guests special treatment even months after their cruise ends.  (My parents are going on another Princess Cruise this weekend – I’m so jealous!)

Our dear friend Kat moved to Sweden this month to pursue her PhD.  It’ll be a while since we see each other again so we scheduled a shopping date at Festival Mall to spend some quality time with each other. We miss you Kat! :)

UPLB held its annual SyenSaya Science Fair this month.  I helped out as an exhibitor for one morning.  Our exhibit was “The Physics and Math in Origami” :)

I had fun at the event, and I even learned how to make these adorable origami bows

Borrowed Sir Taps’s Luffy during the exhibit

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Hanging out with Hollywood stars at Madame Tussauds

During our visit to California last May, we asked Kurt to take us to Madame Tussauds’ wax museum.  We passed by this place last year during our walk around Hollywood Boulevard, but we were pressed for time back then so we didn’t get a chance to go inside.

IMG_9280a (1)We were in Hollywood, so of course there were plenty of sidewalk character impersonators outside the museum

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Looks like there’s a Spidey convention going on

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Master Yoda.  Very tall you have gotten.

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There was this Wolverine impersonator who looks amazingly like Hugh Jackman

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I wasn’t able to get a shot of him facing the camera, but look at him!  He looks like the real deal!

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Before heading inside the museum, we took a quick photo with this giant Oscar

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We also posed with Shrek for a bit.  He was there to welcome the visitors at the museum.

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Ticket counter.  Kurt actually bought our tickets online because it was cheaper, but we had to pick them up here.

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We had to take an elevator to get to displays.  The inside of the elevator was plastered with photos of celebrities

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Once we got to the entrance, I was disappointed to see that there were a lot of people already inside.  I was hoping we’d be able to have the place to ourselves for a while since we came really early.  But then I realized that most of the people weren’t moving.  It turned out that they were the wax figures!

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There’s only one real person in this shot – everyone else is a wax statue

Isn’t that cool?  I didn’t expect the displays to be out in the open like this.  I’ve only been to one other wax museum before and all the statues were behind velvet ropes.

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Even this photographer was made of wax.  He was there to greet us as soon as we got off the elevator.  I actually stood and posed for a while because I thought that there really was someone taking pictures of us.  (A photographer took our picture right before we got on the elevator, so I thought that this guy worked for the museum too.)

I love that visitors were free to go up to the statues and touch them – something that was definitely not allowed in the other wax museum I went to.

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Ezra was very impressed at how lifelike Lady Gaga looked

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Check out those eyes

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We were blown away by the details on these figures

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Even Ryan Reynolds’ stubble looked real!

We spent our morning going around the museum and posing with the “celebrities”

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Here’s Ezra and Kurt with Snoop Dogg (or Snoop Lion as he’s known now)

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Brangelina with their new adopted daughter

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Keeping it classy with Selma Hayek

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Kurt fanboying over Selena Gomez

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Oops I did it again XD

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Hello there Mr. Smith

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Ezra was fascinated by how real he looked again

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Selfie time

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Revisiting Third Street Promenade and Little Tokyo

Last summer, our family went to California again to visit our relatives.  We were excited for our trip because we wanted to see everyone again, and and we couldn’t wait to escape the summer heat in the Philippines.

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Quick selfie before leaving for the airport

It was the height of summer in the Philippines, so I was eager to get to the airport to cool down.  Unfortunately when we got there we discovered that the airport was under renovation so the air conditioners weren’t working!  It wasn’t as hot as being outside in the sun, but it definitely wasn’t the cool escape I was hoping for.  We were sweating the entire time we were checking in.  The airport lounge was a *little* better.  They had some fans and an evaporative air cooler, but unless you stood in front of them, they didn’t really cool you down.  Nevertheless, we were still happy to be there since we haven’t had breakfast and we wanted pig out on their free snacks.  Besides, after a while we were able to secure a spot right in front of the air cooler.

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Breakfast time :D

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I had arroz caldo, mini sandwiches, siopao, siomai and some pastries

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After we were done eating, I took out my GoPro.   I’ve only used it a couple of times before this so I needed to practice.  Since I didn’t buy the LCD BacPac, I needed to learn how to hold it so my shots are framed properly.IMG_8851

Of course I had to learn how to use it with the monopod too.

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We had a lot of time before our flight, which we passed by playing Candy Crush.  Did you know that the entire time we were in California, I never made it past this stage?  I spent over a month on this stupid level before I was able to move forward.

Soon it was time for us to board
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We chose EVA Air again because they had the most affordable fares.  Plus, we really liked their service.  Ezra and I love EVA Air because they always have Hello Kitty as their mascot.

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Duty free magazine with Hello Kitty on the cover.  Inside you can find loads of cute Hello Kitty merchandise:

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Travelling essentials

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Cute Hello Kitty backpack

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Hello Kitty perfumes

After a few hours, we made it to Taipei airport

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We had some time so as usual we wandered around the airport to stretch our legs before our long flight ahead.  Ezra and I were excited to see that they renovated the Hello Kitty terminal

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They had a new Hello Kitty mascot in front of the store

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We also stopped by the orchid garden again

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Everything’s so purple!  Like my phone :D

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SKDR Films : Madame Tussauds

I’m still working on my US 2014 blog entries, so here’s another video that Kurt made for us during our trip there.  This was when he took us to Madame Tussauds in Hollywood.  Such a fun day~ I think it’s clear from the video how much we enjoyed ourselves.  We were exhausted by the time we left the museum.

EDIT : Blog entry now posted HERE.

You can see the other videos Kurt made of our US trips HERE.

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Another trip around the sun

I celebrated my birthday earlier this week.  I was a little busy with work so I wasn’t able to post this entry on my actual birthday like I did last year.

This year’s celebration was very simple.  I only had one class the whole day, which made me feel like the university gave me a present. When I got to the office I found a rose on my desk from Amie, along with a note :D

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Thanks Aminess~

For lunch, the family and I went to our favorite 88-Resort for some Korean food.  This is where Ezra and I celebrated our birthdays last year too.  It’s becoming a tradition I think.

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Birthday selfie while waiting for our food

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Banchan :D

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Family photo taken by our waiter

After lunch, I returned to my office and found this note on my door

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Thanks Davies! :D

The rest of the afternoon was pretty uneventful – I spent most of it checking quizzes and lab reports at my desk.  At around 4pm, some of my officemates and I went to IRRI to have merienda together.

When I got home that evening, I found one of my favorite cakes waiting for me at home – Sans Rival :D

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A “fishy” trip to Dagupan and Baguio

Last January, our family went on a short trip to Dagupan.  It was a business trip for Ezra and my mom (for their Milkfish Project), but my dad and I were free so we decided to tag along.

The drive to Dagupan takes about 5 to 6 hours, depending on traffic.  On our way there, we stopped by Our Lady of Manaoag. My parents love visiting churches around the Philippines, so whenever they have a trip to Dagupan they make it a point to stop here. We didn’t stay long since there was a wedding going on at the time. We prayed for a while and lit some candles before continuing our drive to Dagupan.

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Replica of Our Lady of Manaoag in the candle gallery

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We arrived at NIFTDC at around 4pm. Doc Westly was kind enough to let us stay at the new Asian Fisheries Academy dormitory.

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After dropping off our luggage at our room, we visited Doc Westly in his office to thank him for accommodating us.  My mom also grabbed the chance to schedule a meeting with him and his staff.

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We had to leave after this because Ezra and my mom had to meet with another collaborator at a restaurant called Jacobo’s

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Such a beautiful place.  It reminds me a lot of Kilika Island from Final Fantasy 10.

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My dad and I walked around and took pictures while Ezra and my mom had their meeting

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Rare shot of Ezra being so hardworking XD

My mom didn’t have to work the next day so we decided to drive up to Baguio for some sightseeing.  The last time we were there together as a family was back in 2008.

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My grandfather was a member of the Lions, so we stopped by the Lions Monument to take some pictures

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We also made a quick stop at the Kenon Road Viewing Pavillion.

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After this, we went to the Lourdes Grotto to pray and light more candles

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We saw this adorable pup there :D

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We also dropped by Bell Church, a popular Taoist Temple in Baguio.

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The last two times we were here, we were able to get our fortunes told by a monk. Both times gave me accurate results, so I was hoping to do it again this year.  Unfortunately the main temple was closed when we got there. However, we were free to explore premises and take pictures.

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