The 31st of August was just a normal day for us in London, rather unusually bright and sunny, not grey and wet like the day before so we went to Kensington Gardens for a picnic at around 1PM to enjoy the warm sunshine. We were in our usual spot, behind The Orangery, and just as we were about to eat our ‘Chinese take-away’ (we don’t always eat sandwiches and crisps every time we go out for a picnic, you know!? 🙂 ), we spotted and heard a helicopter hovering above us. We were then reminded that it was Princess Diana’s 20th death anniversary. After eating I grabbed a book from my handbag and started reading it but the sound of the helicopter bothered me so much that I decided to put it away and told Jared I was going to walk around the park towards the front gates of Kensington Palace. Continue reading
Summer is my favourite season of the year. I am a tropical girl after all. 😉 Regrettably, London has a very short summer and there is no distinct four seasons here. It’s a rather odd and unpredictable weather with a cold, wet and long winter months but very brief hot summer days. When it’s not raining I like to go out and take a long walk in the park. And we are blessed to live in a neighbourhood that’s only a few minutes walk to some of the most beautiful parks in the city — Kensington Gardens, Hyde Park and Holland Park. There are other parks in London that I love to visit whenever I get the chance. One of them is Regent’s Park — a massive area and home of London Zoo, Royal Botanic Society, etc. And my favourite part of the park is the rose gardens which is absolutely stunning when all the flowers are in full bloom. Continue reading
The new ITV documentary ‘Diana, Our Mother: Her Life and Legacy’ is not in any way an explosive version of Princess Diana’s interview about intimate details of her marriage, or her, and her husband’s extra-marital affairs. There was none of that. Rather it was an intimate account of her sons, Princes William and Harry, on how they view their mother and the impact she had on their lives yet with very little new insight. Continue reading
I’ve been following Notting Hill Yummy Mummy for almost three years now. She is a Notting Hill resident who inspired me to share on social media what goes on in our neighbourhood. She launched her debut novel The Beta Mum Adventures in Alpha Land over a week ago, and I got to read it a week before it was out. I enjoyed it so much and did a review here. That’s why I’m honoured to share the exciting news of her new novel right here. In this conversation we discuss how she began her blog, her love of reading and writing and, of course, her debut novel. Continue reading
In my previous post I mentioned that Filipino food has recently been making waves in London foodie scene — thanks to Rowena Romulo and many others who are raising awareness for Filipino cuisine in the UK. Romulo Café London opened only over a year ago and has already garnered an award — the ‘Most Loved Restaurant in Kensington’ at the 2016 Time Out Love London Awards, and has continually received commendations from food critics and customers, and it now appears in some of London’s restaurant guide books. I decided to interview Rowena for two reasons: first, she has a fascinating story to tell; and second, other women will certainly gain some insight and inspiration from her experience. Continue reading
Other than seeing blossoms, there are other things I am so thankful for when spring arrives in London. For one thing, the sun finally makes an appearance; I get to wear my spring jackets and put away my winter coats! Consequently, I get to feel the warmth of the sun on my skin and get Vitamin D from sunlight. The days are also longer with temperatures rising; the trees begin to burst back to life, and the flowers are blooming making the parks and the streets look a little bit more magical.
In this series: ‘Things I learned about the British Culture’ Part 1.
Before I moved to London I knew next to nothing about the Christmas traditions in the UK. I had no idea that the main Christmas meal is eaten at lunchtime or early afternoon on Christmas Day; that the dinner table is decorated with Christmas Cracker; that people eat goose, brussel sprouts, pudding and mince pies for dessert (I thought mince pies were made with mince beef!), that they drink mulled wine, and that they tell their kids that their presents were from Santa. Seriously, every kid in the Philippines knew that Santa is a fake. Houses have no chimneys so how was he supposed to climb down to deliver the presents? Besides, it’s hard to believe that Santa is real when you see a skinny Filipino guy at the shopping malls or a hotel lobby dressed up in a red suit with fake cotton beard. 😆 Continue reading
Prior to my first London trip back in 1999 I had no idea what a ‘mews’ was. My very first visit to a mews was in west London, at Jared’s family home, located in a quiet enclave called ‘White Swan Mews’ in Chiswick. But it’s not the typical Victorian period mews with a cobbled-street and two or three storey cottages. White Swan Mews is a rather modern, a post-war era gated neighbourhood with three-storey houses and a spacious backyard garden. Continue reading
Let’s face it, those of us who come from far flung countries like the Philippines or Japan, have no full comprehension of the British culture even after living in the country for over a decade. If you’re like me, the first few months of living here must have brought some culture shock to your system. And I’m not even talking about any difficulty you may have encountered in trying to understand the British accent (it can be a challenge), but rather I’m referring to the British way of life; how the Britons conduct themselves and what motivates them to behave in a certain fashion. I deem the topic of such interest that I decided to do a series of post about all the things that I have so far learned about the British culture in the last sixteen years. I’ve lived in England that long, I’m afraid! 😉 Yet there are far too many things I don’t understand about my adopted country. But let’s not even go there, I’m here to talk about the things I have come to fully understand and eagerly embrace. Here’s the very first one . . . Continue reading