Manila Bay’s picturesque sunset

After watching Ballet Philippine’s SWAN LAKE at the Cultural Center of the Philippines, I chose to eat dinner at a restaurant near the Manila Bay.

Lo and behold, the sun was playful and showed its glory in bright orange hues! I was simply in awe! This is God’s majestic creation and I’m so blessed that I was able to capture this special moment. ❤

“Those who live at the ends of the earth stand in awe of Your  (God) wonders. From where the sun rises to where it sets, You inspire shouts of joy.”

PSALM 65:8

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Sunsets are proof that no matter what happens, every day can end beautifully. 

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Sunset is a wonderful opportunity for us to appreciate all the great things the sun gives us!

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When I admire the wonders of a sunset or the beauty of the moon, my soul expands in the worship of the Creator. 

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Genesis 1:14-15 New International Version (NIV)

14 And God said, “Let there be lights in the vault of the sky to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as signs to mark sacred times, and days and years, 15 and let them be lights in the vault of the sky to give light on the earth.” And it was so.

Hope you enjoyed the beautiful sunset!

Have a blessed day everyone! 🙂

Tangkuban Perahu Bandung,Indonesia

Selamat pagi

Welcome to Tangkuban Perahu!!!

Tangkuban Perahu is an active volcano, situated 30 km north of the city of Bandung the direction of Lembang. It is the only crater in Indonesia that you can drive up to its very rim. Mount Tangkuban Perahu has a distinctive shape, and looks like an “overturned boat”. The huge crater is an astonishing view and you can walk around and explore this for around two hours. Here you will be greeted by sulfur fumes which the crater continues to emit although the volcano is not active.
Like so many of Java’s unusual geographical features, there is an interesting legend behind this fascinating mountain as expressed in the local legend of Sangkuriang. Sangkuriang was a strong young man, who had been separated from his mother, Dayang Sumbi since childhood. Yet, through God’s he came to meet her again. On the way home, he stopped by a small village where he met and fell in love with a beautiful girl, without realizing that the girl he loved was in fact his own mother, Dayang Sumbi, who had remained youthful through the years.

When Dayang Sumbi discovered the terrible truth of her lover’s real identity, she was horrified and knew that she could never marry her own son. She, therefore, challenged him to build a dam and a huge boat during one single night before she would agree to marry him. Seeing that her son was about to complete this impossible wish, she called on God to bring up the sun early. With a wave of her magic shawl, Dayang Sumbi lit up the eastern horizon with flashes of light. Deceived by what looked like dawn, the cocks crowed and farmers rose for a new day.

When Sangkuriang realized that his endeavor was lost, in his rage he kicked the boat that he had built turning it upside down, which was transformed into Mount Tangkuban Perahu, the name that in the local Sundanese language translates roughly to “overturned boat”.

Tangkuban Perahu has definitely a significant role especially in the development of the surrounding Parahyangan (land of God) Highlands. Its eruption contributed immensely to the formation and fertility of the hills north of Bandung when through its flow of lava carrying large boulders into the valleys, these formed huge cliffs over which waterfalls leapt to form the lake that today covers the Bandung plain.

Located at the highland just at the outskirt of Bandung, Tangkuban Perahu Crater is surely a perfect place to enjoy cool air and relaxing sceneries after a series of shopping activities in some of the city’s factory outlets or the popular Pasar Baru Trade Center.

Reference: http://indonesia.travel/en/destination/392/marvel-at-tangkuban-perahu-s-volcanic-crater

Here’s my review on Tangkuban Perahu:

The Price

price

The locals have different entrance fee and it’s waaaay cheaper than the tourists’ fee. My friend told me that I should try to look like a local (I even practiced some Indonesian language) but the man at the entrance wanted to see my ID.. so yeah, I paid the tourist fee of : Rp 200,000 or $15 or P683. Hahaha! 😄

The Scenery

I’ve been telling my local Indo-Chinese friend to bring me to Tangkuban Perahu and I’m glad we did paid a  visit. We visited on a weekday, so there was no traffic going up to Tangkuban. I love the sceneries and of course the cool weather up there! It’s been raining in Bandung for the past weeks, and I thank God He answered my prayer. It didn’t rain when I was there in Tangkuban Perahu!!! I was  able to see the beautiful crater and took lots of photos. The surrounding was just like Baguio, in the Philippines: cool weather, full of trees, and lots of sellers. Hahaha.

Horse ride

The People and Items

Deciding which souvenirs to buy. Hmmm…haggling nicely too! My charm worked! HAHA. 😛

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We also went to the other side and a friendly seller (even if we didn’t buy anything from him) gamely took our photos! To thank him for his effort, I gave him Rp 20,000. Vendors will keep bugging you to buy their products, so be wise and try to haggle/ negotiate nicely. I was able to buy five (5) shirts. Strawberries, Hand crafted ball pens, figurines, caps, foldable batik bags (I bought four), keychains, necklaces, baby shirts can also be found there.

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Recommendations:

Tofu

  • Try the fried tofu with sweet and spicy sauce. It’s so yummy!
  • Visit on a weekday to avoid the traffic and the crowd.
  • Bring umbrella because of the unpredictable weather.
  • Wear rubber shoes for comfortable walking and climbing.
  • Roam by yourself or with a local friend.

car ride

Thank you so much to my Indo-Chinese friends who brought me around Bandung Indonesia. I had so much fun! 🙂

Thanks for reading my review!:)

Please visit and follow my Instagram @sarahmaytanhuanco

Let’s exchange letters and postcards! Direct Message or Email me your complete name and address 🙂

Happy Chinese New Year!!!

新年快乐! 恭喜发财! 全家安康! 万事如意!

Wishing everyone a prosperous new year!

More success, happiness and love! ❤️❤️❤️

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Photo by: Sarah May Tanhuanco

Instagram @sarahmaytanhuanco

Happy green tea drinking!

tea time

Tea time with delicious moist and soft brownies from Becky’s Kitchen (Philippines)

It is said that drinking green tea has many health benefits. It has been used as traditional medicine in the Chinese culture for more than 4,000 years. Until now, green tea is still a popular drink especially in the homes of Chinese families and served in every Chinese restaurant. Mmmm.. I love free “in-house tea” from Chinese restaurants. I usually drink green tea instead of warm water when eating outside.

I drink green tea almost every day, during breakfast, lunch, snack time, and sometimes dinner. Some say that drinking tea in the evening will result in staying awake all night. I’m not sure if this is true though. 😀

Wondering what are the health benefits of drinking green tea?

Here’s a list of the benefits on why drinking green tea is good for you:

Regulates blood pressure

Its full of antioxidants

Lowers cholesterol

Gives healthy looking skin

Prevents diabetes

Prevents or lower risks of various types of cancer

Improves brain function

Lowers risks of having Alzheimer’s disease

Lowers risk of obesity

Kills bacteria and improves dental health

May reduce risk of heart disease

Beats stress

Boosts your energy

Believe it or not? Try it for yourself. Happy green tea drinking! Haha.

Photo by: Sarah May Tanhuanco (me) 

Tea Cup set from Japan. 

Trip to Kiyomuzu-dera temple, Kyoto Japan

Kiyomizu-dera temple- one of the most celebrated and popular temples in Kyoto. Kiyoi-mizu” 清水寺 means pure water.

Going to see the Kiyomizu dera requires you to climb up a long path. As you approach the Kiyomizu dera entrance, a lot of souvenir shops -left and right are waiting for you. You need to allot time if you want to visit all the shops there. 20140706-203758.jpg

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20140706-203850.jpgAt last, was able to reach the entrance. This is the Deva Gate. *huff and puff* getting all tourist-y, I took this shot and saw the NO PICTURE sign afterwards. Ooops! But why? All tourists were taking photos anyway. Haha
20140706-203901.jpgThat’s me posing at the Kiyomizu-dera Stage just infront of the Main Hall. This was built using a special method, the pillars were assembled without using a single nail! Awesome isn’t?

20140706-204234.jpg“To jump from the stage of Kiyomizu” is an old Japanese saying which means “to do something daring” or “to take the plunge courageously”.

20140706-204413.jpgThe stage. Famous for its location overhanging a cliff. Down below you could see the Otowa Waterfalls.
20140706-204536.jpgSpectacular Kyoto City view from the Kiyomizu-dera Main Hall/Stage.
20140706-204702.jpgPagoda view. 20140706-204805.jpgWrite your prayers and wishes. 20140706-204917.jpg
20140706-205517.jpgStairs going down the Otowa Waterfalls!
20140706-205647.jpgAt the Otowa Waterfalls just beneath the Kiyomizu-dera stage. Here three channels of water from the spring of the mountain fall into the pond. According to local beliefs, each channel represents: 1 Health and Longevity, 2 Success in Love and 3 Wisdom and Knowledge. (Not in particular order)
A person can only choose one channel to drink because the Buddhist monk doesn’t want greedy people. So.. Choose wisely!! The water is also said to have healing properties too. 20140706-205816.jpgYoung and old people lined up to be able to get a drink.

People come to drink water from the falls by collecting it in long-handled tin cups. The tins cups are then placed in a ultraviolet machine for reheating.
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20140706-210055.jpgWalking around the area. Very calm and serene.
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20140706-210220.jpgSpotted: Japanese school children
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Hope you enjoyed the Kiyomizu-dera tour!! Tune in for more Japan travel photos!

Typhoon Yolanda in the Philippines

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How is everyone doing?
One of the strongest typhoon in the world has made its landfall in the Visayas region (Leyte, Cebu, Bohol, Samar, Mindoro etc) and also have been felt in different parts of Luzon and Mindanao. Signal number #4 (which is unlikely to happen) was raised in the different provinces and cities in Visayas. The past few days, government mayors and other leaders were quick to inform the people about the super typhoon and asked those living near the soon-to-be affected areas  to evacuate and stay in assigned evacuation centers. Luckily, people obediently followed the instructions and were safe in the evacuation centers.

Tonight, the local tv news reported that Visayas region are experiencing problems with cellphone signals which is according to the big telecommunication companies – Suncellular, Smart and Globe and most regions have no electric powers. A lot of domestic flights have been cancelled and stranded passengers have no choice but to stay and wait.

It’s been raining hard in Metro Manila right now, and thankfully, I’m safe here at home. Hopefully, no floods will occur and this nightmare will stop soon.

May we continue to pray for Philippines. Let’s pray for the safety of each and eveyone of us.  God hears our prayers. Have faith. Trust in Him.
*During times like these, we are given the opportunity to think and reflect on how we used the natural resources God has given us, did we use it wisely or kept on throwing trash everywhere, cutting trees and not planting new ones? We cannot always blame nature for these catastrophes..humans need to take appropriate actions too. Let’s be good stewards of God’s creation. *

Be safe everyone!

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♥SarahMay♥

Finding comfort food at Romulo Cafe

Enjoying lunch with my family and relatives is always the best! We chose to eat at Romulo Cafe located at 148 Jupiter Street (corner Comet, a block from Reposo) Bel-Air Village, Makati City. 

A little introduction taken from romulocafe.com:

The late Carlos P. Romulo was an important figure in international diplomacy. His career as a public servant included seventeen years as secretary of foreign affairs and ten years as the Philippines’ ambassador to the United States. In World War II he was aide-de-camp to General Douglas MacArthur. As a journalist he won the Pulitzer Prize in 1942. Referred to by his colleagues as “Mr. United Nations,” he was elected president of the United Nations General Assembly in 1949. By the time he died in 1985, “The General,” as he was widely known, had received well over a hundred awards and decorations as well as more than sixty honorary degrees from universities all over the world. www.carlospromulo.org

The people behind this restaurant were the grandchildren. Written on their website www.romulocafe.com : Their goal is simple—to honor our grandparents, and to serve delicious food people really eat: the food we call comfort food.

Comfort food indeed!!! Check out what we ordered! Spell S-A-T-I-S-F-I-E-D! ❤

gCrispy Squid deep-fried crispy squid with a chili-honey-garlic glaze   P200
f

Tinapa Roll shredded tinapa with red eggs and tomatoes in a lumpia wrapper   P145

eHalaan Soup clam soup   P160dTito Greg’s Kare-Kare oxtail and tripe stew in a peanut-based sauce, served with steamed vegetables and our house bagoong   P450cLola Felisa’s Crispy All-Vegetable Canton crispy canton topped with sautéed vegetables   P180b

Garlic Rice  P55
a

Lola Virginia’s Chicken Relleno (half chicken) roasted chicken stuffed with ground pork, raisins, chorizo, and peas   P615

h

Ginataang Sigarillas with Tinapa winged beans cooked in coconut milk and topped with smoked tinapa   P180

oxtongue

 Lengua ox tongue stewed in red wine sauce   P275

pork

Boneless Crispy Pata Binagoongan deboned crispy pata served with eggplant-and-tomato bagoong sauce   P650

Photography by: Sarah May Tanhuanco 

The Cerchio Experience

Remember my Korea travel posts? Sorry I don’t know how to link properly. LOL.#fail

https://itravelwithmyheart.wordpress.com/2012/05/03/the-romantic-side-of-nami-island/

https://itravelwithmyheart.wordpress.com/2012/04/30/the-beautiful-nami-island-south-korea/

https://itravelwithmyheart.wordpress.com/2012/04/09/sungsan-sunrise-peak-%EC%84%B1%EC%82%B0%EC%9D%BC%EC%B6%9C%EB%B4%89/

https://itravelwithmyheart.wordpress.com/2012/04/26/everland-resort-flower-garden-and-safari-world/

Our Korean tour guide visited the Philippines for a short business trip. Since I’ve been communicating with him for months now, we scheduled a very small reunion with some of our tour mates slash friends.

Uncle told him to drink.. so he said “yes”. Posing with his glass of beer. hihihi.

I was looking for a restaurant along Tomas Morato and came across Cerchio Grill and Lounge. I’ve been wanting to try this restaurant because of its good reviews – yummy food, nice ambiance and homey feeling. Knowing that the place will be jam-packed because it’s a FRIDAY- yes, weekend, I quickly called Cerchio for a reservation. What I also liked about Cerchio is they have valet parking just in case. 😀

Cerchio, in Italian means “Circle”, and the interiors of the entire place explains it all. I wasn’t able to take photos of the restaurant (but check out the last 3 posts it might help. Haha) because I was busy entertaining our guest and of course, ordering food! HAHA.

Our Korean tour guide wanted to try fusion (Cerchio’s  offers Asian-Mediterranean Fusion cuisines–PERFECT!) and some Filipino food, so here’s what we ordered that night.

Cerchio’s Pork Sisig with Quail’s egg on top

French Onion Soup Filipino style with Bulalo.

Kare Kare

KangKong or Water Spinach with lots of garlic

Grilled Chicken Pork Adobo

Crispy Tilapia

Vietnamese Spring Rolls

Salmon something. Sorry forgot the name.

Pasta

Pumpkin Soup

Mango Cream Cake

Toffee Sansrival

I ordered one dessert for the 3 of us. The dessert turns out to be oh-so-yummy! WE wanted to order more! YUM!

We all had fun that night and as first timers, we like Cerchio!!! Will be back soon 🙂

Cerchio Grill and Lounge

# 76 Scout Limbaga Tomas Morato Quezon City

Green thumb

In the Philippines, hibiscus are called “Gumamela”. It is one of the most familiar flowers in the country. It’s also been one of the favorite decorations in many Filipino gardens.

I remember a fond memory when I was a kid, my yaya used the Gumamela leaves and mix it with something (forgot what it was) to make our own version of bubbles!!!

It was awesome.

This is our Gumamela flower, grown with tender loving care. ahihihi. 🙂 It’s huge and beautiful. I had to pluck it as soon as possible in order to take its lovely picture! (yes, before it wither and die a beautiful death..lol :p). I was in a hurry, I even forgot to take its photo straight from the plant! huhu. /facepalm 😄

Just because one man took a stand

 Meet Tim Tebow. An American football quarterback for the New York Jets of the national Football League (NFL). He is known for sharing his Christian faith with fans and in clinics, hospitals, market places, schools, and orphanages.

Why was he is so special? This is what he did: 

JOHN 3:16 New King James Version (NKJV)

16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved. You and your household. May we be like Tim Tebow, not afraid to share our faith in God to others. Let us spread the good news of God’s love, touch lives and be an inspiration to the people around us GOD LOVESYOU:)