Kung Hei Fat Choi - Congratulations and Be Prosperous!

Years and years, the Philippines have been celebrating the Chinese New Year.  Filipinos have adapted some of the Chinese traditions because they believe that, by doing so, they may also attract good fortune, vibrant health, wisdom, and longevity...  

Here are the top 12 Chinese Traditions in welcoming the Year of the Rabbit:

1.  Wear new set of clothing on Feb. 3, 2011.

2.  Wear new slippers.

3.  Put on new set of bedsheets and linens

4.  Pay all your debts before Feb. 3, 2011.

5.  Reconcile with your enemies, forgive and forget.

6.  Give Red Envelopes (Ang pao)  to children and unmarried persons (with money inside).

7.  Don't sweep the floor starting 12 midnight of Feb. 2 until 12 midnight of Feb. 3.

8.  Don't mention the word and number four (4) because it sounds like the Chinese word for "death".

9.  Don't cook, or use sharp knives and utensils because they may "cut off" fortune.

10.  Don't wash your hair or you may wash away good luck.

11.  Don't borrow or lend money.

12.  Don't mention death or tell ghost stories.

I think those are not too difficult to follow, right???  Now, how about the celebration?

The family members gather together, eat together, and party with some of their relatives.  They happily celebrate the occasion talking about the blessings they have received during the previous year.  They serve symbolic food that are believed to affect their family's future.  Here are some of the usual preparations for the celebration.

1.  8-Treasure Chicken (Pat Po Kwe) - A dish made with a whole chicken, which symbolizes a good marriage and family unity. Duck, which represents fidelity, may also be used for the dish, though chicken is preferred. The chicken is deboned and stuffed with ingredients like sticky rice, dried shredded scallops, minced Chinese ham, dried shrimps, lotus seeds and other spices. Sticky rice also signifies family unity while lotus seeds symbolize fertility.

2.  Tikoy - Also known as Chinese New Year pudding, tikoy is made up of glutinous rice flour, wheat starch, salt, water, and sugar. The color of the sugar used determines the color of the pudding (white or brown). It is cut in pieces, dipped in egg and fried. Not only is it made with the glutinous rice that ensures family unity, it is in a round shape which means unending prosperity.

3.  Pancit Canton, Bihon or Misua - This is is served because the long noodles are said to signify a long, prosperous life.

4.  Fish - Usually eaten on the eve of Chinese New Year. In Chinese the word for fish is a homophone for the word for "surplus" or "extra." It is best to serve the fish whole, with bones, head and tail intact, to ensure abundance and a good beginning and end to the new year.

5.  Shrimp - This is said to bring happiness and well-being.

6.  Boiled dumpling - In northern China they were traditionally eaten because the method of preparing them suggests packing in luck. In addition, the word for dumplings sounds like the word for the hour of the transition to the new year.

7.  Green vegetables - Said to forge close family ties.

8.  Candies - This is said to bring a sweet year.

9.  Sunflower, squash, or melon seeds - Believed by some to ensure happiness in the new year.

10.  Fruits - brings beautiful life and sweetness to the family.

There you go, you may start doing some groceries for the preparation of the food.  Or, you may also book your family to a Chinese restaurant, like what we did.  We have made a reservation at Choi Palace (I believe that it's the best Chinese Restaurant in the country).  I think it is easier to go there rather than preparing, don't you agree?

But whether you are Chinese, Filipino, American, or any Nationality, the important thing here is, we should be thankful each and everyday for all the blessings the Lord has bestowed upon us.  That we are welcoming the New Year with open arms, facing new challenges, great fortune, longevity, good health, and bid goodbye to the outgoing year which helped us grow wiser and stronger.  

Kung Hei Fat Choi!!!

Choi Palace
Eastwood Mall, Libis Q.C.
Tel. Nos. 706-7807 to 09


On Judith Leiber Clutches... In love...

Since the Oscars or the 83rd Annual Academy Awards is fast approaching, I can smell that the actresses are now busy choosing what clutch should they bring to match their gowns...  During the Golden Globes held recently, bloggers seemed to focus on the clutches held by the actresses, and not much on the dresses and gowns worn...  Is it because the clutch really completed the whole look?  And I'm wondering, how come a small bag like that make or break an outfit?  And also, what items can I put inside?  I don't think they have cellphones in there I suppose...  A lipgloss, an oil blotter and some mints...  That's it...  Well I think those are the 
"Awards Night Necessities" don't you think???

Anyway, I too, started to fall in love with those clutches...  Can't resist the fact that I'm a bag addict (rehab) too...  But let me check if you don't agree with me on these photos...

Jennifer Lawrence Jewelbox Clutch

Christina Hendricks - Fleurs Rounded Rectangle Minaudiere

Elizabeth Moss - Flip Top Diagonal Cut Mother of Pearl Minaudiere

Piper Perabo - Streamline Clutch with Frosted Lucite

Photo Credits:  The Bag Snob

And these...  Droooolllll!!!!


 Meticulous Detail



Detailed Craftsmanship



 Flawless Hand-Craftsmanship (my favorite)







All clutches are creations of Judith Leiber. Almost every First Lady dating back to 1963 has carried these custom-made bags...  

Sigh...  Just by looking at those clutches makes me feel Elegant.  What more if I hold them???

For inquiries on Judith Leiber Clutches, 
pls. send SMS 0917-8940623


The Oscars

James Franco and Anne Hathaway standing next to large Oscar statues have been released. The two actors will serve as co-hosts of the Oscars telecast. The 83rd Annual Academy Awards will be presented on Sunday, February 27, 2011, at the Kodak Theatre. The nominated films and actors shall be announced probably tomorrow... 

James Franco is predicted to be nominated as one of the Best Actors for the film "127 Hours": Will the fact that he's co-hosting the Oscar ceremony hurt his chances? Don't think so. Franco is practically doing a one-man show here, and his fellow actors will recognize how masterfully he handles the challenge.


Isn't She Lovely???

I'm referring to the Céline 2010 spring and summer bag series...  Designed by the creative director Phoebe Philo, who desired to create minimalism, elegance, class, and uniqueness...  The series focuses on Functionality rather than Fashion trends...  I witnessed two lovely ladies toting Celine Luggage Tote Mini and I immediately fell in love...  
with the bag...  

Purse Ladies - A and J

and some celebrities like:

This bag is clearly going to be my latest obsession...


I Heart... Karl/Fendi this Spring!

Brrrr, we still feel the cool air in the metro, but yay, spring accessories are already in the horizon!!!  And Fendi's collection are leading the way...  My favorites are the 
block wedges and the bold bangles!


Double Strap Open Toes


Bold Bangles

I just don't know about the Sunnies.... 
I don't think I could pull that off!!!  


Nail Up!

Last year, I got so addicted to manicure and pedicure/nail polish.  I always wanted my nails manicured.  The only problem I had is that, only dark hues can match my fingers.  I don't know, probably because of my skintone.  My fingers don't look good on pinks, browns, and the likes...  Actually, I am using only  2 colors, red and blue.  For the reds, I use 3 different shades of Essie and 2 different shades of OPI.  But they actually look the same...  No one would even notice that I've changed polish...  The blue one is Chanel's Blue Satin, which was given to me by Purse Lady G...  I love the way it makes my skin look fairer...

Since I can't put different colors on my nails, I discovered a great solution to my dilemma...  Nail Up...  It is owned by a Korean businessman, Kim, and he's very good in doing simple Nail Art.  He did this to my fingernails and he made it look so easy...  

He made 2 flowers on my Index finger on the far left, then a strawberry on the middle finger, and a Peacock on the ring finger.  All of those designs were easily done by Kim with the use of his stick and pen.  The stick is a very sharp needle-like pen that he uses to create that pointed effect.  The pen is used for drawing lines and circles.  What's really surprising is the prices.  All of his merchandise are really cheap...  I got so excited I ended up paying thousands for my loot...

But look at these...  How can I refuse???

There are tons of designs you can choose from, and tons and tons of colors to mix and match...  Each bottle costs around P80.00.  The stick is around P150.00 and the pen is also around P150.00.  I am so excited to get my nails done and teach Mona (manicurist) how to do the trick...

If you want to visit the stores, they have in Trinoma, Robinson's Place, and Market Market.


Society Lounge

If you're looking for a place where you can talk, with perfect lighting, beautiful ambiance, right temperature, and French, this is the perfect place - Society Lounge.  

Located at  The Atrium, Makati, it's by the end of the building, and a Valet service shall welcome you when you park your car right up the curb. 

The valet crew  assisted us with our gifts and accompanied us inside the restaurant.  Such a warm welcome, I said to myself...

My DS doesn't want to drive especially during the holiday season.  But unfortunately, our drivers were too busy with their "Holiday bugs" as well...  Since it is the Purse Ladies' Christmas Party, we had to pursue with the plan and DS had to accept the fact that she's driving...  I was so relieved when traffic was abnormally moderate, and was really happy with the valet service...  I saw one of the PL's arriving too, G, we were the first ones to arrive...  

For appetizers, we tried the

Stick Mozzarella and ham with tomato sauce and garlic


Shrimp Potato Noodle Spring Rolls with Garlic and Chili

The Mozarella stick was dry, the sauce helped a little, but still, I probably didn't like the use of Mozarella per se on cheese sticks...  Maybe if they added another cheese or two, it would taste a lot better, perhaps ricotta or brie...

On the contrary, the Spring Roll was impressive!  I love that it was presented beautifully, with different dips to compliment the flavor.  
I loved the spiciness of the chili  on this...

Purse Ladies A and D arrived shortly.

Now, for the main course, I had steak, (most of us did)

Beef Tenderloin Morel Sauce and Potato Gratin

While the others had these yummy, delightful entrees...
Duck Breast with Apple and Peach Juice

Grilled Scallops, covered with bacon  and stuffed Calamari
Let me just tell you that all entrees were deliciously prepared.  And our palates were delightfully satisfied...  

And for dessert, we had these....  Unfortunately, I forgot to take note of the names and prices...  

Read:  But actually, they're nothing spectacular...

The restaurant also serves delectable dishes that doesn't cost much, such as, Linguine Carbonara at P475.00,  Tagliatelle Porcini and Fresh Mushroom at P775.00, Special Beef Burger at P625.00, and California Beef Fajitas at P425.00

It was another fun, yummy Christmas night with the 
Purse Ladies... 

Too bad some of the ladies weren't able to join us...