Feed your Kids Smart with Healthy Options

My 7 year old son Lukas is picky when it comes to food. Feeding him is difficult.

He doesn’t like sweets and chocolate, cakes and ice cream which every kid loves! He loves strawberry flavored lollipops though and loves gummy bears.

He has taste only for certain dishes that he loves – Sinigang (stewed pork or fish in tamarind based soup), chicken nuggets, fried and roast chicken, congee, wanton noodles.  He prefers certain brands of crackers too! The choices are so limited that it sometimes stresses me out and worries me if he gets the right nutrition he needs.

That’s why I was so delighted to attend a session, organized by Healthy Options, with nutritionist Amanda Barnes.

Amanda Barnes in action – Treats for Kids


“Moms, Dads, YOU are in Charge!”

I learned that parents need not give up and has to take charge! On the average, it takes 8 – 10 tries before a kid likes a dish/food.  Creating healthy habits should be every parent’s goal.

Asking “How can I make it better for you?” or  “What spices can we add?” involves them in the process and gives them a “choice.”  (You know how the little ones would always want to make choices too!)

Standing firm by saying “You don’t get to try that until you have a little bit of this” will also help.

Amanda encouraged us to make healthy choices for our little ones.

We can choose food and fruits loaded with Vitamins and minerals. Plant based food are excellent choices. Herbs and  spices are powerhouses of good stuff for everyone.  It also helps when they are involved in the process and making them watch as we prepare their favorite food.

Healthy snacks may include carrot sticks, yogurt, oats, milk and fruit shakes!


Lukas loves Fruit shakes, so I now make him his favorite shakes with loads of supplements in it!  (One up for this Mama!)

Supplements are God’s gift to us. (Really!!!).

Probiotics, Spirulina, Flaxseed, honey are awesome, it can be added to any food without kids knowing it. 🙂  Note:  Been trying this ever since 🙂

LITTLE HEALTHY CHOICES – Something to start today

I was encouraged to make little healthy choices – using sesame/avocado/peanut oil than the usual canola oil or Lauric oil (which I often use). Quinoa, healthy spices are also packed with good stuff for our bodies.

We were given samples of stir fried healthy, yummy dishes and snacks. Healthy and yummy at the same time.

After the talk and the group photo, the husband (Yes, he attended too. Thanks luvs!) and I purchased supplements, quinoa, oats and other healthy stuff!

Group Photo with Amanda Barnes



I am thankful that Healthy Options is there to partner with us, parents, in creating a wholesome, healthy environment for our kids and families.

I frequent their Stores waaaay back, even before I had Lukas (I realized now that that was more than 7 years ago!) and it has been my go-to place for healthy, paraben free lotion, shampoo, organic teas and supplements too!

Then a baby and until now, Lukas’ lotion wash, shampoo, and kid’s supplements were all bought from Healthy Options as he (actually we) both have sensitive skin.

Check out my blog – My favorite Shampoo and Baby Wash way back 2015.  I wrote this for other parents whose kids have sensitive skin.

Bottom line: We have always have a choice when it comes to bringing in and preparing food for the family. Let’s Choose healthy. 




Summer Mess Fest Kicks off!

Summer fun invades the SM Malls of the East as the Summer Mess Fest launches at SM City Masinag.


The Summer Mess First is a fun, outrageous and messy event for kids of any age.  Who says messy isn’t beautiful?

It is composed of different messy stations below:

Messy Sands of Fun where kids can be creative building their own sand castles in a colorful beach setup.

Messy Splat of Colors where kids will enjoy painting with their hands using non-toxic paint.

Messy Sweet Land with a sky high pie face challenge with giant props for photo opportunity.

A crowd favorite: Messy Slide of Fun!


Messy Bubble Party – a fun and energetic dance party with a burst of colorful powder and giant bubbles.

Not to forget! Summer treats and surprises are up for grabs at the Messiest Bazaar for kids and parents alike.

Watch out for Summer Messy Fests at:

  • SM City Marikina on May 5 and 6
  • SM City San Mateo on May 12, 2018

It is one of the exciting events of SM Supermalls for Everyday is Playday at SM Campaign.

Top Toys this Christmas at Toy Kingdom

‘Tis that time of year when kids are making their Christmas wish list, and there’s no other way to play Santa in a big way with Top Toys from Toy Kingdom, the amazing toy superstore.

There are the gift sets from well- loved brands – Barbie, My Little Pony, Powerpuff Girls, and Shopkins – that will bring a big smile to little girls.




DC Superhero Girls Power Action Wonder Woman Doll comes with her Super Hero accessories such as the iconic Lasso of Truth and the Golden Shield.


Huggable Powerpuff girls “6 Deluxe doll


My Little Pony Basic Pony. This well-loved pony figure has fancy marks and a whimsical mane. Includes brush and barrettes.


Shopkins Tall Mall. The coolest shopkins treat that conveniently folds down for easy storage. Features an adorable home and garden store, food court and Petkins Parlor. Includes four exclusive shopkins.

Photographer Dennis  Stylist Lin

Barbie Starlight Lead Doll features Barbie in a space outfit alongside pet Pupcorn.



Motorized Nerf N-Strike Mega Mastodon Blaster includes 24-dart revolving drum. Fires darts up to 100 feet (30 meters) and comes with 24 MEGA Whistler Darts.


Rabbie Ke

Hotwheels Bulldoze track set. With stunt action and player-powered launchers. Includes a Hotwheel car.


Orbeez Crush and Draw. Squishy balls to Grow, Crush and Create. Simply Crush your Orbeez color of choice and then use the automatic crush pen and follow the included stencils to create beautiful pieces of Orbeez art! Add water and watch them grow to more than 100 times their volume.


Toys inspired by blockbuster movies – Star Wars Rogue One, Transformers, Power Rangers, and Cars will top any young boy’s list; as will remote control cars and helicopters.


McQueen Sports Car. The coolest ride that comes with three sound modes that let you choose English or Spanish phrases from the Cars 2 movie. Comes with single push-button operation for easy stop and wide door openings.


Paw Patrol Air Patroller. The 2-in-1 Air Patroller that transforms from helicopter to plane mode with real lights and sounds. Comes with a Robopup figure.




Power Rangers Ptera Charge Megazord. Morph into Megazord Mode and Pterodactyl Mode with 3 ways to play. Can be combined with Zord Builder items.




Star Wars Lead Villain Electrical Mask Includes a voice changer feature to transform into the Lead Villain from the new Star Wars movie.


Star Wars Bladebuilders Lightsaber. Highly customizable set with accessories made just like in the movies with classic lights and sounds.


Color Alive Easy Animation Studio. Kids can color their own scenery and stories and bring them to life with the free Easy Animator app. The app works with iOS and Android devices; make it move using a poseable mannequin, capturing the movements with the app and turning them into fluid animations.


There’s also something for kids who are into techie stuff like virtual reality glasses which transport kids of all ages to another world.


PS4 VR with Camera. This virtual reality head-mounted display is fully functional with the PlayStation 4 home video game console.


Xbox One. Newly updated Xbox One with all in entertainment system made not just to play games but also connect other apps such as Skype.


Have fun playing Santa as you complete the list of Top Toys available at all Toy Kingdom Express outlets in SM Stores and Toy Kingdom Stores in most SM Supermalls.

Also visit http://www.toykingdom.ph; ToyKingdomPH at Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.











SM Kids Denim Craze

Kids have caught on to the current DENIM CRAZE at SM!  With looks that are not only classic, but also cool, the collection offers a lot of style possibilities in updating young wardrobes.


Pick your favorite denim OOTD from a wide collection of kids’ denim now available at SMKids Section – The SM Store.

SM Kids shares with us key pieces in wearing denim today:

Fun Jeaneology!  From printed denims and slim boyfriend jeans for girls to relaxed cuffed denim for boys, jeans for kids today have lots of attitude and cool possibilities.


Rompers rule in denim for kids.


One will never go wrong with a perfect pair of denim shorts.

The way of the wash!  The collection has stone washed jeans, lightly distressed denim with a vintage look, and acid washes for a splotched faded design.


Boys’ do a wardrobe change – make it everything denim! #‎SMKidsDenimCraze

Chambray! This surprisingly versatile clothing can be worn in many different ways to suite each kid’s individual style, a fashionable choice for layering or for a stylish double denim look.
Dresses! Denims too have a girly side with pretty little dresses with a boho vibe


Girly and cheery denim dresses.



Girls’ bring out the denims! #‎SMKidsDenimCraze‬

Jackets!  The classic waist length denim jacket is a key fashion item for girls and boys. The trendiest denim jackets for girls are those in muted shades, while those for boys in muted gray and black.



Add a twist to his outfit by layering a denim jacket!


Denim-on-Denim – denim shorts with a long-sleeved denim shirt for a stylish look.

Colored denims! Today’s denims are not only singing about the blues, but also a rainbow of fashion possibilities.



You can never have too much denims! Its versatility makes it a must-have all year long! ‪#‎SMKidsDenimCraze‬



The collection is available at SM KIDS section of The SM Store.




Egg-citing Surprises

Many cherished Easter traditions have been with us for centuries. Eggs, chicks, and rabbits are symbols of joy and new life that comes with the spring and Christ’s resurrection.



Decorating eggs for Easter is a tradition that dates back to the 13th century. It is said that eggs were formerly a forbidden food during the Lenten season, so people would paint and decorate them to mark the end of the period of penance, then eat them on Easter to celebrate.

Likewise, the Easter Bunny was said to have first arrived in America in the 1700s with German immigrants who settled in Pennsylvania, and brought with them their tradition of an egg-laying hare called Osterhase or Oschter Haws. Their children made nests in which this creature could lay its colored eggs.

Eventually, the custom spread across the US, and with it, the fabled rabbit’s morning deliveries expanded to include chocolate, candy, and gifts. Decorated baskets replaced nests.







Whether you’re planning an Easter Egg Hunt at home, or just wish to give the kids a sweet treat, SM Snack Exchange and Toy Kingdom have fun and egg-citing surprises for everyone.

Snack Exchange has chocolates, candies, and other sweet treats to celebrate Easter! An egg-citing surprise awaits kids in Kinder Joy and Zaini Egg Chocolates that come with a toy inside. There are also colorful toy eggs and baskets from Dutche Chocolates; as well as lollipops in festive spring colors, swirls, and Easter shapes like bunny ears and colored eggs.

Toy Kingdom has amazing stuff that highlight the Easter spirit: adorable bunny headbands, as well as whimsical lanterns and pompoms that come with cute Easter cutouts. There are colorful and delightful eggs, wonderfully designed pails and baskets for Easter egg hunting.

These Easter treats are available at SM Snack Exchange and Toy Kingdom Express outlets in The SM Stores and at Toy Kingdom Stores in most SM Supermalls. Also check out http://www.thesmtore.com and Snack Exchange FB account: i crave:snack exchange and visit ToyKingdomPH and toykingdom.ph for more amazing toy surprises.


My Favorite Baby Shampoo and Wash (For Me and My Son )

My son, Lukas, and I have super sensitive skin.  My Dermatologist said that we lack a certain skin barrier that protects our skin and so we have to moisturize a lot as our skin tends to be dry, itchy, and in harsh, cold weather, may sometimes be flaky.  On the bright side, having dry skin means I very seldom have pimples.  My facial skin is clear, which was a big advantage when I hit puberty.   It is hereditary so I guess, we can say are “born this way.”

When Lukas was born, he also has dry, sensitive skin so I had to be extra careful not to use harsh chemicals on his super delicate skin.  As a result, I am always on the look out for natural, high quality, organic cleansing products that does not only cleanse but is extra good and loving to the skin and smells good too!

I am a frequent customer of Healthy Options in Megamall and Shangri la.  But it wasn’t until my son had a rash and my dermatologist recommended Nature’s Gate Baby Shampoo and Wash, that I realized it is available there. I also use Nature’s gate shampoo, conditioner and lotion as well,  so it felt great when I realized there exists a good shampoo which we can use for Lukas’ delicate hair and sensitive skin.

What I like about it:

  • Sulfate / Paraben/ Sodium Laureth/ Phthalate FREE  – no harsh chemical ingredients here!
  • Contains botanicals – Calendula, Chamomile, Orange Flower, Sweet Almond oil, Vegetable glycerin, Jojoba oil and Kernel oil
  • Smells sooooo good and clean
  • Perfect not just for babies but for my delicate skin too!!

What is amazing is that 1 heavy bottle (532 ml / 18 Fl Oz) costs less than P250.00!

I had an rash on my cheek which wouldn’t go away and the recommended cream by my dermatologist did not do a good job.  I thought of using the baby was as a cleanser for my face and guess what? The rash and itchiness went away!  Now, I use super mild cleansers but sometimes, even the mildest soap or formula that we use have chemicals in them which is not good for us.

I hope moms out there trying to find a good product for their and their baby’s delicate, sensitive skin would know about this.  Feel free to share. 🙂

Be healthy and use organic.

Cheers and Love,

Mommy Shane

Family Fun with Science at The Exploreum

When Lukas turned 4, we thought of going on an educational trip to stimulate his young and curious mind. I did my research and decided to go to Exploreum – Where science becomes fun at SM Mall of Asia.

Before we went there, I checked the net and showed pictures of astronauts, space and galleries to Lukas.  He was so excited he wanted to go right away. I have checked out the place before but then, Lukas was still a baby so I took note of the place and promised myself that we would visit once Lukas was old enough to appreciate it.  The place reminded me of a place in downtown San Jose.

What exactly is it?

“The Exploreum is a total immersion experience that will stimulate curiosity and inspire science learning in everyone by creating fun, memorable experiences, because we value science as an indispensable tool for understanding our world and enriching people’s lives.

Our all-new interactive exhibits, to be housed in 10 galleries, will cover a wide range of topics related to life on Earth and the fundamental nature of the cosmos. You’ll be exposed to bold science and fun learning experiences in an eye-opening, awe-inspiring environment that will include 3D holograms, realistic wax models, virtual reality simulations, optical illusions, detailed replicas, entertaining games, audiovisual presentations, and more.”

What a superb choice! We went on a Wednesday so there’s not much people and so we enjoyed the whole experience-  exhibits, gallery and the show all the more.  We also loved that it is conveniently located at SM MOA. 🙂

There were 10 interactive galleries where you can learn about interesting stuff.  These are just  some of my favorite pics taken from each of the galleries:


Human Adventure (Kinect style)

I liked the human adventure gallery where I realized that we are truly wonderfully made.  Our bodies are designed so elegantly by our creator.


Little Doctor Lukas so busy with his surgery


My favorite – the Amazing human brain.


Discovery room – filled with simple machines and experiments



“I want to be an astronaut!”


Connect: Me as a “cool” weather girl


The natural world


Zoom – with models of cars, planes and other vehicles



Science on a sphere – how did they make it float?

What I liked about the whole experience was watching a showing at the Dome Theater. At that time, we watched Astronaut which showed how space explorations were done by Astronauts and how they were trained for the journey.  It was narrated by Ewan McGregor which added a little “star magic” into it.  It talked about inner and outer space and how life in outer space is.  It was impressive!  Lukas was so thrilled and decided he wanted to become an astronaut that day!


The Dome Theater

At the end of the day, we were smarter! We learned a lot of things and had super fun! We will definitely go back and watch more showings at the Theater! You too can enjoy the place with your family at P350.00 per head.  This includes a visit to all their galleries + 1 show at the dome theater.

Over-all, I am happy that we have a place like this in Manila. The place is clean and with friendly staff ready to assist you.  The whole area is neat, clean and kid friendly.  They also arrange kiddie parties and corporate events.

The Exploreum is located at G/F Southside Entertainment Mall,  SM Mall of Asia. You may get in touch with them at Tel nos:  +63 (02) 863-2781.


Quality Play Time at Kidzoona, SM City Masinag

Kidzoona formally opened its 3rd branch at SM City Masinag last Saturday, March 14.  This awesome fantasy park is a safe, entertaining and educational indoor playground. It provides an alternative fun-filled  environment suitable for both children and their families.


Kidzoona’s 3rd branch in SM City Masinag

The name Kidzoona is combination of the words “kid” and “kizuna“, a Japanese word that means the bond between a parent and a child. They have over 500 branches in Asia.  As a working mom, I am on the look out for avenues to spend quality time with my son and what better way than to spend time playing with him in this happy place.


Happy bonding time he enjoys; A picture taken at the parent’s lounge, Kidzoona

There are 6 play areas: The Role Play Town, Car Track, Ball Pool, Cyber Wheel, Toy Corner, and the Parent and Guardian Lounge. There are lockers where you can leave your shoes and there’s also a water dispenser available for thirsty kids and parents during play – how thoughtful. No wonder, my little Lukas loves Kidzoona a lot and I love it too!


TOY AREA – Where there are trains, puzzles, doll houses  and other educational and fun stuff!


CAR TRACK – A mini driving range


CYBER WHEEL – A favorite!


BALL POOL – Literally a wide pool area with balls and slides




Sliding away!


Inflatable slide – another favorite!


A “rope course” for active kids


Hello there!

I’m excited for the Kidzoona branch to Open at SM Center Angono! (Yes, we saw the announcement there already) See you very soon!


Hey, I’m having a good time here too!


Important note: Socks are required inside the play area for the kids and guardians. If you forget to bring any, you can buy a pair at the counter for only Php 50.

Kidzoona Regular Rates:

Child: Php 200/hour or Php 400/3 hours

*Php 100 will be charged for every 30 minute extension

Free: (1) one parent/Guardian per one (1) child.

*Php 100 for extra guardian.

All children within the premises must be accompanied by a guardian of at least 18 years old.

Kidzoona is located at the Upper Ground Level SM City Masinag,  Brgy. Mayamot, Antipolo City, Philippines.  For more info, you may visit their website at http://www.aeonfantasy.com.ph/.

To a Relaxed, Calmer You: Feel Good Lactium

I’m a mom to a 3-year old boy who wakes me up at around 3:00 am to ask for milk. (When will it end?) Usually, when I wake up around that time, it is soooo difficult for me to go back to sleep.  Naturally In the mornings, I wake up feeling tired and dizzy because of interrupted, intermittent sleep.  I wouldn’t dare ever to score a just-woke-up selfie in that state!

As I am a fan of health products, I gravitated towards Sydenham Pharmaceuticals Inc (SPI) Health and Nutrition’s booth when I attended Blogapalooza 2014.   My discovery:   Feel Good Lactium, a food supplement made of milk protein hydrolysate that reduces stress.


Feel good Lactium works on a cellular level. It stimulates the brain to release an amino acid called Gamma – Amino Butyric Acid otherwise known as GABA which reduces the release of “stress hormones” Adrenalin and Cortisol. As these hormones are reduced, stress manifestations such as anxiety, tension, nervousness, increased blood pressure and other effects are dramatically lessened. So even in stressful situations you can manage to relax, be calm and stay focused.

We all know that excessive stress kills. Killer stress not only leads to pimple outbreaks, hair loss and weakened immune system, it also lessens your productivity at work and negatively affects your relationships at home.  What a blessing this is in   managing our daily stress!

images-50 Image courtesy of authenticandfree.com

It is best to take 1 -2 capsule 30 minutes to an hour before a stressful situation of before bedtime.  I took a capsule 30 minutes before going to bed.  After a few minutes, I can’t help but notice that I felt calmer, more focused and relaxed.  I don’t know how to describe it, I felt “stable” and more “centered.”  I was able to sleep soundly.

As usual, my little one woke me up around 3:00am but even then, I felt more calm and was able to go back to sleep immediately. When I woke up in the morning, it was as if I slept for a looong time. Wow!

I actually told the husband that morning how good I actually feel. I can’t wait for him to try it as well.

Feel good Lactium is a food supplement.  it is non-addictive and has no side effects. It is proven safe for those who are lactose intolerant too.  Numerous clinical studies here and abroad can attest that it is harmless, non-addictive and has zero side effects. It is FDA approved and registered under BFAD.  For more information, you may call (+632) 801-9312.

Lactium is available in Mercury Drug, Generika and other leading drugstores nationwide for PhP18.00 per capsule.

Oh the wonders of modern science!  Highly recommended: Feel good now with Lactium.

estore - lactium 900 x 600 px small

“Mama, Where Is Your Other Hand?”

It was just one of those nights when I was putting my little boy to sleep. We were lying in bed, side by side, my left hand gently tapping him and my right hand tinkering with my phone. Then he asked, “Mama, where’s your other hand?” I was surprised. My little boy wanted both my hands. He simply wanted my sole attention, to be held and hugged. I smiled and did exactly that.


Photo courtesy of Deposit Photos.com

It dawned on me that I often multi-task. Sometimes my mind can be on auto-pilot mode that, if I am not careful, special moments can just pass me by. I have a tendency to dash through life hurried and tired. Blame it on the 21st Century! Women today have a gazillion things to do – a family to look after, relationships to handle, a home to manage and a business / career to take care of. My mom is a wonderful woman. I learned a lot in life simply by observing her. She values beauty and excellence. I was blessed to visit her in the US at spring time this year, when I learned from her all the more.

Working as a Property Manager in one of the busy districts in San Jose, California, she manages around 300 units of storage spaces. We often joke around and call it her “kingdom.”  Her “kingdom” spans around 5 to 6 houses in length, literally a block in the area. She is good at what she does – managing and looking after that big property (sometimes even after office hours), maintaining order, overseeing activities, handling clients and maintaining business relationships.

Mind you, this is just one aspect of her. Like a diamond, she has many facets. She is a wife to my dad, a mom to me and my brother, a fabulous grandma to my son, who happens to be so fond of her and her lollipops. She takes her share of looking after her mother, my 91-year-old grandma. She is also a sister, a home manager, interior decorator (ha!) and a fashion advisor. Plus, she also has ministry assignments at Church. We talk about the many things we have to do and the need to relax and enjoy each moment. Then the sun goes down and rises again and soon, we’re back to our “routines.”


Photo by Imprintpilates.com

I went to a spa visit just the other day where I treated myself a one and half hour massage. Everything was relaxing – the dim lights, the soft music and the slow, efficient kneading – the golden hands of my massage therapist. Then around after 30 minutes, I caught myself revisiting my to-do list for the night. I remembered some of the things to be done and tasks needing my attention. I have found that a massage can do just that – stimulate your thoughts and help you focused on what you have to do. However, instead of enjoying the moment at the spa, there I was, the “boss” in me, giving orders and instructions to myself.

I gently reminded myself to relax and be kind. There is a time to enjoy and a time to do things. Things can wait. There is a time for everything.

My little one taught me a lesson that night. It is funny how God seems to remind you to see more beauty in life. It’s as if I hear Him saying an ever gentle and playful “Gotcha!”

Take time to smell the roses. Listen to the soft “gotchas!”  Enjoy each season.  Be in the now.