Category Archives: Out Of The House

In The Mood Food Crawl at Evia Lifestyle Center

Confession: It’s the day before Valentine’s Day and we have not made any plans. No special menu, no restaurant reservation for dinner, nothing. And our Christmas tree is still up. To say that we are unprepared is the understatement of the century.

I do have an idea of where it would be nice to go for a romantic V-day dinner, though, thanks to the recent In The Mood Food Crawl that Evia Lifestyle Center hosted together with my lovely Mothers Who Brunch friends, Mish and Sab.

This is what it really looks like when the three of us get together. Lots and lots of laugh-til-we-cry moments.

If, like me, you are not ready for Valentine’s, read on! If you just want to discover some awesome new places to eat with your boyfriend, girlfriend, spouse, family or friends, read on, too!


There was only one item on my agenda for today, and that was the #inthemoodfoodcrawl, which my lovely @motherswhobrunch friends hosted with the wonderful people of @evialifestylecenter. My schedule is usually crazy or full or both, but when @mommanmanila and @sinfullysabrina say “Save the date!” I save the date. And it’s always worth it, each and every time. I’m completely stuffed from our eating tour of #evialifestylecenter (we went to 7 different places!!!). Can’t wait to take MrC and the ManChild there to try everything. And I’m in a really great mood from all the chatting and laughing. Plus, my sister who brunches (not yet a mother though) got to come, too! Thanks for having us, Mish and Sab! See you again soon. And Evia, I’ll be back! May mga babalikan pa ako sa My Mother’s Cupboard. Lol! 😚😚😚 #valentinesatevia #motherswhobrunch

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Bright and early on a Tuesday morning, I drove to Evia with my sister, Rocky, in tow. Her plan was just to check out the mall since she’d never been there before. Sab and Mish graciously invited her to join us, though, and of course she said yes. Who says no to brunch anyway? 

There were 7 stops mapped out for our food crawl. 7! That’s a lot of eating. And so, off we were, appetites ready, forks in hand, ready to feast with friends. 

Mm-hmm, I am always in the mood!

First stop: Tigerleaf 

Rocky and I with our friend, Helene

It’s not easy to find great Thai food in Manila. We only got to try two dishes from the Tigerleaf menu, but man oh man were they amazing. My sister and I had more than one serving of the Catfish Salad and Chicken Satay, each. We were both well aware that there were 6 more stops ahead, but the food was so good that we just couldn’t help ourselves!

I love that the Chicken Satay is served over hot coals. Keeps the skewers nice and warm.
Crunchy catfish. Tart green mangoes. Crisp lettuce. And an amazing sweet and salty fish sauce dressing. Oh the joy.

Second stop: Mama Lou’s Italian Kitchen

Second stop, and we’re already starting to get full!

I’m no stranger to Mama Lou’s. We’ve eaten at their BF Homes branch many times. I have to say, though, that I was still completely blown away by the spread they prepared for us during the food crawl. Theirs was an Italian antipasto buffet to die for.

Mama Lou’s serves AMAZING pizza!

I particularly loved the Spinach and Honey Goat Cheese with Truffle Pizza. Actually, there was nothing on that table that I didn’t like. If we didn’t have to move on to the next restaurant, I might have just stayed in Mama Lou’s all day. No kidding.

All I want for Valentine’s Day is this spread from Mama Lou’s

Third stop: Merlion’s Cuisine

I thought that was a carved carrot, but it’s actually made of salt!

I confess, Singaporean cuisine isn’t one of my faves. But I did enjoy the Meat Platters and Mango-Sago Pomelo dessert that we got to try at Merlion’s. 

This was really so refreshing

Fourth stop: Mesa

Mesa is love!

While it’s been around for years, I’ve never actually eaten at Mesa before. Now I know that I’ve been missing out. I cannot stop thinking about their Crispchon and the soft homemade malunggay crepe they wrap it in. Then there’s the super fresh shrimp cooked over hot rocks in a clay pot. And sarap! Their kamias shake is a must-try, too!  

You won’t believe how crispy the skin on this little piggy is
Oh my gosh, this needs rice

Fifth stop: Another Story

This salmon was perfectly flakey, and was so yummy paired with the creamy mashed potatoes

I’ve eaten at Another Story before, so I knew to expect good food. We had an Angus Prime Ribeye Steak and a Grilled Salmon, and I loved them both. This is definitely on my list of places to eat with the boys. And I definitely want to order the steak and salmon again. At the same time, maybe. Is that too much? Lol!

I would totally drive to Evia again just for this steak!

Sixth stop: Teppanya

The whole cooking process at Teppanya would be so much fun for kids to watch

I have never had A5 Wagyu before, and let me tell you, I was not prepared for how melt-in-your-mouth it was. So good! It’s the kind of meat that needs barely any seasoning. Or teeth. You can chew on it even if you don’t have teeth. I’m not kidding! The meat paired perfectly well with the giant Hokkaido Salt Crusted Oysters we were served as well. This stop in our food crawl was really such a treat!

Look at all that creamy fat!
Each oyster was literally a mouthful, and so, so delicious

Seventh stop: The Cheesecake Fairy

It was such a treat spending time with Mike and Millie that day!

If there’s one rule in life that I totally live by, it’s always make room for dessert. My blood sugar may not be my friend, but I threw caution to the wind and indulged in the different cheesecakes laid out for us at The Cheesecake Fairy. I expected to like the Oreo one best, but surprise, surprise, it was the Salted Caramel Cheesecake that won my heart. 

I absolutely love anything and everything cookies and cream

Bonus: My Mother’s Cupboard

Before we said our goodbyes, we made one last stop at My Mother’s Cupboard. Oh my goodness, this place is a housewife’s dream come true. (Tip: Guys, it’s a great place to shop for a Valentine’s Day gift for your wifey!)

This is just perfect for those of us who don’t usually go out on Valentine’s Day

In true Mothers Who Brunch fashion, Mish and Sab taught us how to make some magic in the kitchen, which was perfect for Valentine’s Day – A dessert board! I’m definitely excited to try making one at home (coz we all know how much I love sweets) as soon as my blood sugar cooperates. Hopefully, it will be in time for V-day!

Thank you, Mish and Sab, for having us! Rocky and I really had the best time. Til the next one!


*All photos without watermark courtesy of Mothers Who Brunch

Mothers Who Brunch x Uashmama

Fact: I love bringing like-minded friends together so they can make magic. Mm-hmm, I take my role of matchmaker seriously! One of my greatest successes so far is the Mish + Sab tandem popularly known as Mothers Who Brunch.

Just to be clear, I do not take credit for them because, really, it is their amazing talent, hospitality, and shared love for food and entertaining that makes their collaboration a success. But I do take credit for introducing them to one another. And I couldn’t be happier about this match made in kitchen heaven. They really are so fantastic together!

Just recently, I had the pleasure of being invited to yet another Mothers Who Brunch get-together, one which they co-hosted with Uashmama

Side story: Uashmama, an Italian brand, was brought to Manila by my high school friend, Fiddy Ganzon-Ofrecio, and her sisters. One morning, she messaged me to ask if I thought the Mothers Who Brunch ladies would be interested in partnering for an event. Obviously, the rest is history!

Sab and Mish of MWB + Fiddy, Tina and Che of Uashmama PH

Until I spoke to Fiddy about it, I had never heard about Uashmama. I haven’t been shopping (or even browsing) so I’ve pretty much been under a rock as far as nice new things goes. At the event, she told us more about the brand and the products, and wow, they are super amazing.

Easy to fold, easy to store Uashmama paper bags. I especially love the metallic ones!

As I mentioned earlier, Uashmama is an Italian brand, and they make washable paper products. They have paper bags, place mats, lunch boxes and even purses and backpacks. These are all made in Italy using eco-friendly processes and practices. For example, the dye that they use is vegetable-based and food grade, making the products totally safe to use in the kitchen and on the dining table. 

Look at this perfectly styled table with Uashmama as part of its centerpiece!
The Uashmama bags are great for brightening up a cozy reading nook, too! See the different colors and sizes?

I’ve been to a number of MWB gatherings before (thank you, Mish and Sab for always inviting me!) and it’s safe to say that there are three things you can always look forward to when you’re there: Food, fun with friends, and frizes and giveaways.

Of course, I meant prizes, and of course that was a joke!


This time around, the food was a delicious Italian spread prepared by Joy of YogiBrunch, along with a few other treats made by Mish and Sab.

Look at that fantastic spread!
Isn’t this salad so pretty? I’ll tell you the secret to making veggies look this good in a bit.
Confession: I had two slices of this Egg and Mozzarella loaf. Egg, dairy, gluten, everything that’s bad for my eczema! But I. Don’t. Care.
I love how the Uashmama washable paper bags were used here, styled of course by the genius sisters of Boqueria Lifestyle Market.

Before we could sit and enjoy the feast, we were given a little activity to do. After being split into groups, we were tasked to style an assigned area of the Viking Range Showroom featuring the Uashmama products. 

Styling has never been, and will never be a strength of mine, which is why I was super happy to have been grouped with Michelle and Maget who knew what to do. I was there for moral support, mainly, and also to find little pieces to add to our display.

Hello from Team Coffee Table!

Here’s our styled table! Isn’t it pretty? With matching light/shadow effect for added drama. Lol. Maganda?

So, food – check! Fun with friends – check!

As for prizes and giveaways, we were all in for a treat. There were a lot of goodies. And I mean A LOT. 

We each went home with a cute Mothers Who Bruch bag filled with wonderful goodies. There was a box of organic salad from EarthOrigins, a new cafe and organic store in Westgate. I happily gobbled it up before I remembered to take a photo, though. Sorry! But I’ll tell you, I’ve eaten at EarthOrigins, and their turmeric ice cream is so good, and also dairy-free!

There was a box of plant-based laundry detergent from Amala Naturals in the bag, too. I used it for the first time today, and I hope it does wonders for my spotty skin. I will keep you posted. I was also happy to see a bottle of my favorite Cusina Home dishwashing soap there. It’s so good for sensitive skin! 

How cute is this bag? And it even has a recipe printed on the back!

Uashmama sent us off with some place mats (one of my favorite things in the world!) and our own washable paper bags. I’m so excited to use them at home.

Our friends from Severin were there, too, armed with fantastic raffle prizes – Yogurt makers, crepe makers, and even a couple of Mr. Twister spiralizers!

There were so many prizes that everyone had a chance to win! This was really lucky for me because I never win. Now that I finally did, it was a huge prize! I actually took home a Severin Mr. Twister! What a perfect addition to my (already) Severin-filled kitchen!

Mine is the face of success! Lol. Christmas totally came early for me!

So, remember that pretty salad photo from earlier? The carrots and zucchini on top were prepared using the Mr. Twister. Mish and Sab showed us how to do it before we started eating, and it really looked super easy to do. I am now dreaming about the different salads and zoodles that I can prepare!

Here’s Mish showing us how to prepare veggies for the salad using the Mr. Twister. My face here says, “How do I get me one of those?”

This was my first holiday get together for this year, and what an amazing one it was. Thank you so much, Mothers Who Brunch, for having me. And thank you, also, to the fantastic sponsors who made the day extra wonderful for all of us there.

All photos provided by Mothers Who Bruch. I took some of my own but I can’t find my camera cable, so there. Haha!

P.S. You can read about my past MWB experiences here and here. And I’ll be writing about two more real soon!

P.P.S. Read more about this fun gathering from the other lovely moms in attendance:

Bowen 24 Cafe

Discovering Bowen 24 Cafe

Fact: MrC and I are very particular when it comes to our coffee.

We prefer to drink Arabica, and absolutely love how it tastes chocolatey, nutty, and fruity all at the same time. We also enjoy brewing our own coffee at home. We only use an ordinary coffee maker because it’s the simplest option, but whenever MrC has time, he likes to play around with his Aeropress.


Our everyday coffee of choice is That Coffee Cult’s Sagada Dark Roast, because #SupportLocal! Lately, though, we’ve been indulging in organic Arabica from Costa Rica, since we have a fairly large (but quickly diminishing huhuhu) stash, all thanks to my sister’s boyfriend.


This week’s bag of beans. Thank you, @ricardoortuoste, our Costa Rican #coffee pusher.

A photo posted by MrsC | Patricia Cuyugan (@mrspcuyugan) on


We like coffee a lot, so it’s easy to see why I would get excited about spending time at a coffee shop. With free coffee. Free coffee is the key to getting me to say yes, my friends. Lol, just kidding. But it does help. Ask my friend, Millie. I said yes to her right away when she asked me to come check out a new coffee shop in our neighborhood, Bowen 24 Cafe.


My barista here at #bowen24cafe looks kinda familiar. ?

A photo posted by MrsC | Patricia Cuyugan (@mrspcuyugan) on


Bowen 24 Cafe is super easy to find. It’s just along President’s Avenue in BF Homes, right across Puregold, where (the very forgettable) Paume’s Pastryhouse used to be.

I love the glass windows and doors that line the front of this cafe, letting a lot of natural light in. It adds so much charm to the beautiful interiors of the place. And oh, how beautiful it really is inside.

The cafe is mostly clean and white, with wood-finished floors, and wooden tabletops paired with pasted blue chairs. There’s a gorgeous accent wall with a really nice honeycomb design, painted in lovely shades of grey. 

Small potted plants add a hint of nature to the space. Little details like framed photos and hand-lettered quotes, pretty throw pillows, and super chic light fixtures tie everything together perfectly. Bowen 24 Cafe is both chic and homey, and 100% Instagrammable.


I learned a few things about the cafe when I was there for their pre-opening Coffee Appreciation Day.

Roxie, one of the owners, shared that the name Bowen 24 comes from her apartment address as a student in Australia, #24 Bowen Street. Millie told me that the idea to have a kiddie corner springs from the fact that all the business partners are parents, and that they want Bowen 24 to be a place where moms can come to work, hang out with friends, or just quietly relax, and not have to worry about how to keep the kids occupied for a few hours.

Bowen 24 Cafe
Millie’s little ones enjoying this fun space for happy kids. Photo from Bowen 24 Cafe.


I’m excited over the fact that they also plan to build a small library in the cafe because for me, settling in with a good book and a hot cappuccino is one of the best things to do in a coffee shop. More than anything, though, I’m happy that there’s another place nearby that takes pride in serving really, really good coffee.

Bowen 24 Cafe serves a signature blend called The Brunswick Blend, which is specially made for them by the excellent roasters of Toby’s Estate. The blend highlights the coffee’s chocolatey and nutty notes, which is exactly the kind of coffee that we love.


Need one of these right now. Pwede ba magpa deliver? Lol! #bowen24cafe #morecoffeeplease

A photo posted by MrsC | Patricia Cuyugan (@mrspcuyugan) on


During the exclusive Coffee Appreciation Day, we were given a crash course on proper coffee extraction by one of Toby’s Estate’s award-winning baristas, Andy. He made us sample several cups of espresso, allowing us to experience what over-extraction and under-extraction does to the taste of coffee. At the end of the experience, I feel like we all went up a notch on the coffee snob scale. In a good way, of course.

As if the tasting experience didn’t give us enough of a caffeine boost already, afterwards we were treated to a few specialty drinks and coffee pairings, also prepared by Andy. First, a long black paired with dark chocolate. Then we had cappuccinos paired with roasted cashew nuts. Finally, Andy made us some naturally-sweet iced coffee – So good, and something I’d totally go back for. No sugar added, which means it has only about 2 calories and no fat. Ang galing guys


They serve yummy cakes, too, made lovingly by Roxie. Not gluten-free, but certainly cheat day worthy. So even if I do save calories and fat grams by choosing the naturally-sweet iced coffee, nabawi naman lahat and more sa cake. Oh well. At least I know for sure that I’ll be one happy customer.

So, will I be coming back to Bowen 24 Cafe? Yes, absolutely. I love it there already.

Thank you, Roxie and Millie for having us. See you guys again soon!

Bowen 24 Cafe
At Bowen 24 Cafe with Helene, Roxie and MIllie. Photo from Bowen 24 Cafe.


Bowen 24 Café
#29 Presidents Avenue, BF Homes Paranaque
IG: @bowen24cafe

Playtex Tampons Philippines

Surviving Periods One Month At A Time With Playtex

I hate getting my period. I do. I highly doubt that there’s any girl in the world who looks forward to that horrible once a month week of pain and discomfort. 

Back when I was a student, and even when I worked at an office, period week almost always meant that I’d be absent for a few days. Now that I have errands to complete, a household to run, and hungry boys to feed, I no longer have the luxury of shutting down when my annoying monthly visitor arrives.

And so I cope in whatever way I can. I won’t get into any details, because that would be over sharing (lol as if this isn’t all too much info already,) but one thing that has helped was my choice to shift to tampons. 


Tampon of choice. Lol. #overshare #confidentgetzgals #chooseconfidence #defyperiods #playtexph

A photo posted by MrsC | Patricia Cuyugan (@mrspcuyugan) on



When I was younger, I thought that tampons were the strangest things, ever. When I finally tried them, though, I realized how much better they were than pads. Minimal leaks and no rashes – Yun palang winner na.

I recently had the chance to attend an event about tampons, hosted by Playtex, my brand of choice. There, I was surprised to know that not a lot of women know how tampons work, and fewer, still, have ever tried using them. 

So, I thought it would be a good idea to share a few tampon facts that were discussed during the event. Some of the information was new to me, and some I already learned through research and experience. Everything is super useful, and good for a girl to know.

Playtex Tampons Philippines
This is Dra. Lydia Jamora, who taught us all about tampons and how they work during the event. (Photo from Playtex Tampons Philippines)


Fact #1 – Tampons allow you to be active despite being on your period.

Yes, friends, you can swim with a tampon on. It won’t fall out and start floating around the pool. It won’t absorb pool water and make you sick either. Since it’s worn inside the body, you don’t have to worry about it shifting to an awkward position when you run or bike. It also can’t be seen through thin, tight sportswear unlike a pad.

Fact #2 – Tampons can’t get lost inside your body.

Your cervix is too small for a tampon to pass through, so there’s no chance of it being pushed so far in that you won’t be able to retrieve it anymore. Your vaginal wall will also hold it in place (provided that you’ve inserted the tampon properly) so it should stay put until you take it out.

Word of warning: The string could break, though, and that will make it super hard to remove. But still, it won’t get lost in there.

Fact #3 – You can wear a tampon while you sleep

I personally do not do this. For some reason, I feel more secure sleeping with a pad on. But you can totally use a tampon overnight. Just make sure to change it after a maximum of eight hours to reduce your risk of getting Toxic Shock Syndrome.

Fact #4 – Tampons are not uncomfortable to wear

Truth is, when inserted properly, they fit snugly and comfortably down there. You shouldn’t feel any pain or discomfort. 

Fact #5 – Tampons won’t devirginize you

I was already a mom when I started wearing tampons, so I can’t vouch for this fact myself. Lol. This was told to us by an OB-GYN at the event though, and I’m pretty sure that we can take her word for it.

Playtex Tampons Philippines
Some info about Playtex Tampons. (Photo from Playtex Tampons Philippines)


So why do I prefer tampons over pads? Well, my sensitive skin disagrees with pads. The constant contact makes for very itchy rashes especially on warm days, and when I use tampons I don’t have to worry about this. It also feels cleaner, and I no longer need to worry about leaks and stains, which was something that I would constantly deal with before.

Playtex was the first tampon brand that I tried, then it disappeared locally for a while. I’m glad it’s back now because I really wasn’t happy with the other brands I’ve been able to buy from S&R. I even asked my in-laws to get me other brands from the States, but those weren’t so nice either. 

I like Playtex because the size is just right – Not too overwhelmingly big, but big enough to feel secure. It’s super absorbent, too. The string is long, and just thick enough that it’s easy to find. And that’s enough sharing for one day. Lol.

If you want to know more about Playtex Tampons, check them out on Facebook.