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Kitchen lovin’ habits

While not all of us are destined to become master chefs, it is still possible to become experts in the kitchen. Growing up, we were asked to slice vegetables, set the dining table while taking care to wash our hands and clean after ourselves. “Good habits formed at youth makes all the difference,” the great Aristotle reminded us. And those who listened to Mom or Dad as they conjured all sorts of yummy stuff in the kitchen are surely grateful for knowing basic things that help them manage their own kitchens today. Those who paid less attention are now ruing the lessons they missed. The simplest kitchen habits enable us to prepare clean, healthy meals while maintaining an organized environment for one of the busiest rooms in our homes. Do you practice …

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The diversified forms of the Philippine Wax Plant or Hoyas

Hoya is a genus of about 200-300 species of tropical climbing or trailing plants in the Apocynaceae (Dogbane) plant family.  The genus is native to southern Asia (India east to southern China and southward), Australia, and Polynesia. Common names for this genus are waxplant, waxvine, waxflower shooting star or simply Hoya. This genus was named by botanist Robert Brown, in honor of his friend, botanist Thomas Hoy. Hoyas are evergreen climbing vines or shrubs growing to 1-10 m (or more with suitable support in trees). They have simple opposite leaves 5-30 cm long that are typically succulent, and in many species are flecked with irregular small silvery spots. The flowers appear in axillary umbellate clusters at the apex of 2-3 cm peduncles, with repeated clusters of flowers developing sequentially on each peduncle. …

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Visiting Venice

Changing and plural, an iridescent and translucent waterlily city floating in her own image, Venice can just as well appear to be a figment of the imagination. In her desire to seduce she aims to be seen as a mirror, to trick the eye, as well as the senses of smell or hearing. Not only through reflection, but also through the snare of the mask: she no longer appears caressed by light, but sketched, outlined and frozen. She unfolds the ornate, festooned screens of her palaces, which, like curtains at the opera, entice you to go and see if the wings hold as much promise as the front of the stage. Such is the classic and perverse invitation of the mask. Venice, being a theatre for actor-spectators and spectator-actors, is the …

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Preparing for the blooming of the Waling Waling Orchid

With the onset of the rainy season, especially the almost 2- week long continuous rain or “siyam-siyam", most true orchid enthusiasts are very excited.  Who wouldn't be? It is the climatic requirement for the flowering of one of the grandest and important Philippine orchid species, the Waling-Waling or the Vanda sanderiana. The Waling-Waling can also be scientifically identified as Euanthe sanderiana due to its peculiar spurless labellum in its flower, as most Vanda has a spur.  This magnificent and beautiful orchid is now being used as a parent for the breeding of modern Vandaceous orchids, in order to acquire the flatness and roundness of standard cut-flower vanda orchids. Historically, the plant was discovered by a European,  Mr. Cari Roebelin, in July 14, 1880.  He worked as a plant collector for Frederick Sander, …

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Room to spare

With the ever-growing global movement against clutter, it is refreshing to hear of homeowners realizing extra space where there used to be none. Still, a spare room can easily be forgotten, as people get so used to the idea of having all rooms occupied. Reincarnating a newly vacated room might actually be a daunting, intimidating prospect. Changing how a room looks or even its purpose can prove difficult. But like a fresh canvas, a spare room opens many possibilities. Dealing with it increases the function of your home and livens it up to you and your family’s advantage. Here are some ways you can give it a new vibe: 1. Happy inheritance. You can have younger members of the family who previously shared rooms occupy the space! If you realized the new space …

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Fab furnishings and decor online

Going to a home furniture and décor store is a common thing to do especially when you need to replace malfunctioning pieces at home. But what if you don’t have the time to go? Thankfully, we have online furniture sites that will help ease the shopping dilemma. But before diving into the online sites, remember that you wouldn’t have an actual feel of the furniture you’re buying. In order to compensate for it, keep in mind the following: 1. Measure the length and width (and depth if applicable) of your replacement furniture pieces to make sure that the one your buying will fit in your home space; 2. Coordinate the furniture color with the supplier because your monitor will show a different gamut from the actual one; 3. Ask what the …

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Infant in the house

Having a baby, especially for first-time parents, entails a lot of preparations – and uncertainty. A major task ahead is being able to create a nursery, your newborn’s special place at home. The process is definitely exciting especially because it comes with many legitimate reasons to shop. Every parent dreams of giving the newest member of the family the best welcome-home present: An ideal space to be nourished and loved. In the quest to design the most ideal baby room, considerations go beyond choosing colors and themes. A nursery should be, first and foremost, safe and practically designed for what taking care of a newborn demands. While the approach in decorating will be unique for every parent, there are universal guidelines you should observe. Here are some tips to start the …

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Quality investment pieces

After interviewing architects, interior designers and people in the know about investing in quality home pieces, we have finally collected a summary of the ones that we should splurge on since quality never goes out of style. They suggest that we should invest on pieces that exhibit functionality, comfort and aesthetic design as to how it will complement our interiors. Listed are 6 investment pieces that you can pass on to your kin. Dining/Living Room Table Sets Our dining and living room are places where we spend most of our time together as a family. If only these pieces of furniture could talk, they would certainly relive the moment that they were delivered to your home; how well they were cleaned and polished, recall the highs and lows of each family member; and …

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A majestic and tranquil garden hideaway

There is a buzz of a new leisure farm and camping destination, just a stone-throw away from the cool highlands of Tagaytay.  The place is easy to locate from the directional signs starting from the Alfonso ark. The majestic and tranquil Preziosa Botanic Park and Farm Resort is located in Sugsugin, Alfonso, Cavite.  It is a 16-hectare developed estate, with a warm-welcoming reception area, a grand functional Pavilion, and first-class Villas, where you can stay for the night.  Upon arrival, visitors are usually greeted with refreshing buko juice and suman, with attendants dressed in Hawaiian polo shirts. The area is ideal for retreats or team-building, or just to have a quiet time away from the busy city life.  The Pavilion also serves breakfast, lunch and dinner upon request. The idea for …

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Bored at home?

If we go home to get away from it all, why do we end up feeling bored sometimes? Rainy days or being home alone can often bring a sense of sadness even with no reason. The truth is we will never run out of things to do at home. Often, we just simply don’t know what to do or the things that can make us occupied. The next time you feel low during a rainy day or find yourself all alone, here are some ways to get rid of the blues: Conquer your fears. And we don’t mean your fear of ghosts. Go ahead and search for new employment opportunities or scholarship grants! Write a friend you have long wanted to reconnect to. Reach out to that person you want to …

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