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Posts Tagged ‘philippines’

Summer 2015

August 17th, 2015 No comments

We basically stayed in Manila for the whole summer. There were a few days spent in Thailand as a family, and Matt and I had a get-away to Indonesia. I tried to take the kids out to play with friends and do something active at least once a week (besides swimming at our place). I think that they had a pretty fun summer; and they didn’t kill each other. They were definitely ready to go back to school when it resumed.

First activity of the summer was to go to a 3D art gallery called Art In Island

First activity of the summer was to go to a 3D art gallery called Art In Island

Art in Island is claimed to be the largest 3D museum in Asia in terms of the number of 3D paintings available, around 200 masterpieces. The kids had a great time running around the whole building since it wasn't crowded and taking silly photos.

Art in Island is claimed to be the largest 3D museum in Asia in terms of the number of 3D paintings available, around 200 incredible pieces. The kids had a great time running around the whole building since it wasn’t crowded and taking silly photos.

We spent a morning at Active Fun where Blake loved being around the big kids who joined him in the ball pit.

We spent a morning at Active Fun where Blake loved being around the big kids who joined him in the ball pit.

At the mall we went ice skating and the kids with friends had the whole rink to themselves for nearly an hour.

At the mall we went ice skating and the kids with their friends had the whole rink to themselves for nearly an hour.

Spent a couple of hours at Kidzoona where the kids were able to dress-up, make believe and play in the ball pit.

Spent a couple of hours at Kidzoona where the kids were able to dress-up, make believe and play in the ball pit.

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Kalani got to go to a hair salon and get her hair ombre colored.

Kalani got to go to a hair salon and get her hair dyed ombre.

We had beautiful weather and lots of friends to be with while enjoying a morning at The Fun Farm.

We had beautiful weather and lots of friends to be with while enjoying a morning at The Fun Farm.

We celebrated a mom's birthday at a restaurant before going bowling. The boys were all very well behaved once the iPad was pulled out!

We celebrated a mom’s birthday at a restaurant before going bowling. The boys were all very well behaved once the iPad was pulled out!

The kids survived the summer and they have completed a full week of school already.

The kids survived the summer and they have completed a full week of school already.

Vacation – El Nido, Philippines

July 16th, 2015 1 comment

A fellow Chevron expat family booked a vacation to El Nido, Palawan in the Philippines the first weekend in May. They invited others to join them for the three-day weekend get-away. El Nido has been on our list of places to visit, so we quickly agreed to join and booked our tickets.  We stayed at Apulit Island in El Nido and had our own bungalow over the coral reef, with private stairs in the back leading right to the water. We had to take an hour plane ride to get to El Nido. Then a two hour car ride to the boat port. And then another hour or so on a boat to get to Apulit island. It was a lot of traveling before we got to enjoy the island.

For the El Nido resorts there is a private airport terminal. We are ready to go relax and play with friends.

For the El Nido resorts there is a private airport terminal. We are ready to go relax and play with friends.

Palawan island as seen from the plane...El Nido is there somewhere.

Part of the Palawan island chain as seen from the plane…El Nido is there somewhere.

The middle cottage is where we stayed at Apulit.

The middle cottage is where we stayed at Apulit.

The kids are ready for an adventure. We decided to have a private island hopping tour.

The kids are ready for an adventure. We did all enjoyed a private island hopping tour.

Snorkeling with fish was fun, but the kids really liked jumping off the boat while it was anchored.

Snorkeling with fish was fun, but the kids really liked jumping off the boat while it was anchored.

We hired a nanny to help watch Blake so Tia could snorkel and play. The nanny was not going to let Blake get sunburn!

We hired a nanny to help watch Blake so Tia could snorkel and play. The nanny was not going to let Blake get sunburned!

During our private island hopping tour, we also had our own private lunch on a deserted island. They brought the resort accommodations and food to us!

During our private island hopping tour, we also had our own private picnic lunch on a deserted island. They brought the resort accommodations and food to us!

The second day we spent time at the resort. We had fun at the beach.

The second day we spent time at the resort. We had fun at the beach.

Many hours were spent in the pool playing all sorts of swimming games.

Many hours were spent in the pool playing all sorts of swimming games.

We did some paddle boarding and kayaking as well.

We did some paddle boarding and kayaking as well.

We saw some local wildlife. This monitor lizard was very near our table during breakfast...and Matt may have tried to capture it.

We saw some local wildlife. This monitor lizard was very near our table during breakfast…and Matt may have tried to capture it (on several occasions).

Below one of the cottages we saw a stingray hanging out in the morning.

Below one of the cottages we saw a stingray hanging out in the morning.

Walking back from breakfast, we saw a baby black tip reef shark in the shallow waters near the cottages.

Walking back from breakfast, we saw a baby black tip reef shark in the shallow waters near the cottage.

While traveling to return to Manila,  to remind us that we are in the Philippines, we had to walk through two boats in order to get to the dock where our van was waiting for us. Luckily no one fell in the water.

While traveling to return to Manila, to remind us that we are in the Philippines, we had to walk through three boats in order to get to the dock where our van was waiting for us. Luckily no one fell in the water.

More photo of El Nido here.

Siargao Vacation

July 9th, 2015 No comments

In February the kids had a 4 day weekend, so we took advantage of that and went to Siargao here in the Philippines. Siargao is known as being a surfing destination. Although we don’t surf, we still had an enjoyable time exploring the island, going island hoping, and trying out surfing at the famous “Cloud 9“. A friend also told us of Kalinaw resort to stay and it had delicious food (homemade bread, wood fire pizza, etc) and a wonderful and helpful staff.

We flew from Manila to Cebu. Then took this plane from Cebu to Siargao

We flew from Manila to Cebu. Then took this plane from Cebu to Siargao

The local grocery store

The local grocery store

Kalinaw Resort.  Our room is on the right and the kids loved that the pool was right next to our room.

Kalinaw Resort. Our room is on the right and the kids loved that the pool was right next to our room

Kalinaw Resort at dusk. The owners have made this such a nice resort with the little details.

Kalinaw Resort at dusk. The owners have made this such a nice resort with the little details

Day 1

First island to visit was "Naked Island". Nothing there, just sand.

First island to visit was “Naked Island”. Nothing there, just sand.

Second Island to visit is "Dako Island". We had a yummy lunch prepared by our resort here.

Second island to visit is “Dako Island”. We had a yummy lunch prepared by our resort here.

Last Island to visit "Guyam Island". Not much here, just some trees and rocks.

Last island to visit “Guyam Island”. Not much here, just some trees and rocks.

Day 2

Traveled around the island to Magpaponko Swimming Hole during low tide.

Traveled around the island to Magpaponko Swimming Hole during low tide.

Exploring the island of Siargao. Very quiet and peaceful place.

Exploring the island of Siargao. Very quiet and peaceful place.

Day 3

Our last day we met this family during low tide. The father was teaching his children how to fish.

Our last day we met this family during low tide. The father was teaching his children how to fish.

We made it to the famous "Cloud 9" surf spot. Matt and Tia got surfing lessons and we both stood up on our board. Here Tia is surfing a small wave.

We made it to the famous “Cloud 9″ surf spot. Matt and Tia got surfing lessons and both stood up on our board. Here Tia is surfing a small wave.

We enjoyed our time at Siargao, and the staff at Kalinaw resort was a big help during our time there. They played with Blake during all of our meals and were just so pleasant.

We enjoyed our time at Siargao, and the staff at Kalinaw resort was a big help during our time there. They played with Blake during all of our meals and were just so pleasant.

More photos of Siargao here.

Baby Blake turned 1

July 2nd, 2015 No comments

Last week our baby turned 1! We have loved this past year to be able to have a baby in our home again. Blake brings so much joy and happiness to us everyday. And living in Asia, he gets a lot of attention with his blonde hair and blue eyes.

 

He is well traveled and loves the beach and ocean

He is well traveled and loves the beach and ocean

How he was normally carried when we left the house…attached to his mom using the Moby Wrap

Now he gets around using his Plasma Scooter

Now he gets around using his Plasma Car

We love this baby of ours

We love this baby of ours

 

Before Blake turned one he has been on 22 airplanes and 6 countries. And I am sure there hundreds of photos with him and different Asian people.

6 year old Mason

June 21st, 2015 No comments

Mason turned 6 in May. This past year a lot has happened for our fun, sensitive, temperamental boy.

Exactly one month after Mason's 5th birthday he became a BIG brother. And he is a wonderful big brother who always loves to play with his baby brother.

Exactly one month after Mason’s 5th birthday, he became a BIG brother. And he is a wonderful big brother who always loves to play with his baby brother.

He started school and loved making new friends and playing.

He started school and loved making new friends and playing.

He lost a bunch of teeth this past year so his mouth if full of holes.

He lost a bunch of teeth this past year so his mouth if full of holes.

He still loves his uncle Robbie. And he discovered that he can touch his nose with his tongue.

He still loves his uncle Robbie. And he discovered that he can touch his nose with his tongue.

He loves to help out in the kitchen...mostly making chocolate chip cookies.

He loves to help out in the kitchen…mostly making chocolate chip cookies.

He likes to be happy, laugh, tell jokes and cuddle.

He likes to be happy, laugh, tell jokes and cuddle.

On his actual birthday we were at Coco Grove Resort in Siquijor. The staff made a special sign for him, sang to him, and gave him a small dessert. It really made him happy.

On his actual birthday we were at Coco Grove Beach Resort in Siquijor. The staff made a special sign for him, sang to him, and gave him a small dessert. It really made him happy.

Six facts about 6 year old Mason:

-He wakes up around 6am everyday

-He takes a nap nearly every late afternoon

-He is over four feet tall

-Reverse psychology works well with him.  “Mason you cannot be in this photo, Mason you can’t have any fun, etc”

-He is learning to read and write…even though he doesn’t really care to learn to read and write

-He is adventurous. This year alone he has done wakeboarding, platform jumping into the ocean, snorkeling, elephant bathing, tiger feeding, and swimming with whalesharks

*More photos of Mason here.

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