Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Homewood Suites Hilton

When we had our   early summer getaway in San Antonio, Texas, we stayed at Homewood Suites Hampton, an extended stay type hotel.  We had a really good vacation package when we booked  our flight, car, and hotel accommodation in one.  The best way to get the best deal is to plan your vacation ahead.  Booking your flight and accommodations earlier can save you money.  That's what we did  when we had our vacation.

As you can see in the photos above, the package deal that we had  includes the van which my husband really likes and that's what also prompted us from buying our own when we came back from our vacation.

The hotel is very clean.  It has extra amenities  such as swimming pool, kitchen, business center, fitness room, big dining and reception hall.  You will totally feel at home in staying their hotel.  I love that  you can access wifi inside your rom or you can go to their business center if you do not have an iPad or  laptop.
I love the Native American theme inside the room.  The displays above were my favorites.
Here are some photos from their website.   I highly recommend Homewood Suites by Hilton.  It is located  12 miles northwest of downtown and very close to San Antonio Airport.  It is also closer to  some of the  attractions in San Antonio such as Six Flags.

Homewood Suites By Hilton San Antonio-northwest Hotel, Tx - Reception Area

Homewood Suites By Hilton San Antonio-northwest Hotel, Tx - Breakfast Area
Homewood Suites By Hilton San Antonio-northwest Hotel, Tx - Meeting Room

Homewood Suites By Hilton San Antonio-northwest Hotel, Tx - Fitness Room
Homewood Suites By Hilton San Antonio-northwest Hotel, Tx - Outdoor Pool

Homewood Suites By Hilton San Antonio-northwest Hotel, Tx - Business Center

What I love about them is that, they offer complimentary breakfast  everyday and  there is also complimentary dinner from Mondays thru Thursdays, that right there saved us a lot of money because it is expensive to  dine out especially for us four.  The food  tastes really good, you can tell that they do care for their clients like a family.   They also offer a complimentary shopping  service, so if you are planning to cook inside your room, you can just avail of their  shopping service and you will be good to go.  Above all, we love their customer service, all their  employees are very friendly!  

Disclaimer:  I am NOT paid to write this review.  I just want to share to my readers our great experience in  staying at Homewood Suites.  

How To Pick the Right Family Car For You!

The family car transcends definition, as the nuclear formulas of yesteryear fall by the wayside and the quickfit solutions of the mini-van fall short of the post-millennium cut. Shopping for the family machine normally leaves Mum and Dad with a rolling headache, as SUV hybrids, sedans and fuel efficient hatch-backs roll away before their eyes – while choosing a vehicle to appeal to your non-stop lifestyle is challenging, the following five tips can remove some of the guess work and help you make the right choice for you. After all, there’s no one size fits all set of wheels waiting for you.


Take an honest account of your current finances and reflect on what you can afford. A second hand people-mover with low miles and a solid history is a sound investment, achievable and within immediate means. If you’d like to opt for a market darling and drive away in a new Ford family SUV, determine the impact of monthly payments on your bottom line, before signing off in the dotted one. Making concessions on features for a better price will not always pay off.


Our relationship with the bowser flounders as fuel prices rise and the Monday morning rush turns into a tri-weekly event, as day-care drop offs, after school pick-ups and weekend sport events run the tank dry. The petrol pump doesn't need to be an enemy; in fact, you’ll find fuel economy popping up on basic features lists, across a variety of models and badges. By cutting back on fuel consumption, you’ll reduce your collective carbon footprint and start the conversation for a better environment around the dinner table.

Comfort, Convenience & Aesthetic

Considering the hours you’ll spend cruising and tripping around the countryside, with the full family loaded and ready to go, comfort is a central concern. Do yourself a favor and strike the two door vehicle off your list – cute, zippy models are better suited to those without bursting schedules. Though kids graduate from booster seats and safety straps relatively fast, saving yourself the choir of “let me out” later on will minimize parental stress. Extra leg room, storage sleeves and a roomy boot space are essentials in your search for the family friendly unit. Spacious does not mean ugly. Long gone are the days of the white station wagon or paneled door people mover; look around for sophisticated and stylish models, they are there. Transporting a family from A to B can be mentally and physically taxing; whether you’re travelling with half a football team, three dogs, a newborn or party-going teens, a family car should reflect your lifestyle, without sacrificing your on-road identity. While durability and longevity will become familiar friends, style and class are still within reach, even when real-life is set aside to umpire backseat arguments and juice stains.

Author Bio: Jack has been a mechanic for 5 years and is a complete rev head. He has 3 cars to his name, and his past time hobbies include redoing old cars, travelling, going to car shows and writing blogs about cars.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Antique Clocks at Cleveland Museum of Arts

These are just some of the beautiful antique clocks display at Cleveland  Museum of Arts.

I wish we have the whole day to explore the museum, it would have given me the time to take notes of what are the details from each pieces but we were just breezing through as  after the  museum, we were   going to the beach that day.
Shadow ShotsABC Wednesday

5 Different Ways to Travel This Summer

Take a Road Trip around Morocco

There is something striking about road travelling across this vast country endowed with such sites to behold; from the highest peaks of the Atlas ranges to the golden sandy dunes of the Erg Chebbi desert. A road trip allows you to pick out features that you will enjoy, allowing you to go off the back routes and discover unseen sides of the country.

You can begin by taking a bus through the city of Marrakech and enjoy the views of the hustle and bustle without necessarily getting involved in the never ending activities. Enjoy the spectacular views of the dominating Koutoubia Mosque and the busy Jamaa El Fna square.

Take a trip to the old medina of Fez and stop over at the Cascades de’ Ouzoud; then head to the Roman ruins of Volubilis and head to Rabat, Casablanca and back to Marrakech.
In order to fully enjoy your trip, consider taking a local guide with you, especially if you want to explore the areas off the conventional paths.

Volunteer Abroad In China

There are other ways to enjoy a fantastic holiday while still impacting the lives of others. China is a fabulous destination for such humanitarian deeds and its natural beauty is unmatched; from the streaming jungles of the tropical south to the windswept grasslands of Mongolia.

You can volunteer helping disabled youngsters in the city of Xi’an or experience the exciting bustle of real Chinese classrooms as you  teach English in China in one of the many possible destinations.

Cruise the Galapagos

You may be wondering where to visit this summer for some incredible experience and a bit of inspiration; well these islands may just do the trick for you.  The Galapagos are a wildlife explorer’s dream destination. Discover the interesting flora and fauna that inspired Darwin’s theory of evolution.

You can enjoy different fun activities such as snorkeling and walking along the pristine islands and witness colonies of birds and wild animals unfazed by your presence. In Isla Santa Cruz you will discover Darwin’s research on giant tortoise and other endangered species. You will see interesting animals such as sea lions, red marine iguanas and penguins.

Relax On the Beach in India

India is not only a hub for architectural beauty and varied landscape but also offers some of the world’s most scenic beaches. Goa definitely takes the crown as the ultimate beach destination in India.

The picturesque Palolem Beach, Goa is spectacular and the best beach in the whole of India. A thick forest of coconut palms surrounds this semi- circular beach. It offers both relaxation and adventure; you can go dolphin spotting, fishing in a boat or hire a boat and explore the amazing scenic beauty. As it’s also surrounded by beautiful resorts like the  Cidade de Goa you can also rely on somewhere great to stay when you’ve had enough of the beach.

For a more solitude beach experience, the stunning Varkala beach in Kerala is an ideal destination as you enjoy the perfect views of the Arabian waters atop the rugged cliffs along the shore.

Take a Trip to Brazil

Brazil is gaining popularity as a fantastic touristic destination not only for its  famed carnivals (Preview) in Rio de Janeiro but also its delightful beaches and party loving people. If you like it loud and colorful, you better head to Brazil right away.

The Bahia beach is a hot spot for beach lovers, enjoy the white sands and palm trees. Alternatively, you could take a trip round the Fernando de Noronha archipelago for a discovery trip. Don’t forget to visit Sao Paolo which is Brazil’s biggest city and enjoy a drink in the chi-chi bars.

These tips come from Tom at MaltaHolidays.uk.com,   another great place to stop if you fancy beautiful cities and pretty beaches.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Rocks from Headland Beach

During our  recent escapade in Headland Beach in Mentor Ohio, the kids  picked some rocks and brought it home.  We put them in our garden, it would serve as a reminder that in 2013, we went  to Headland Beach.

 Ms. Burrito calls this "Birthday Rocks" as  it was her birthday when we went to the beach.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Getting Along with Music

I can tell that my son is  getting inspired by his sister's skills in playing piano.  I asked him one more time if he wants to go back to piano lessons  and he told me no again, but, he said that he  wants to  take guitar lessons instead.  That won't be bad as I love strumming guitar when I was  younger and wish that I could have took lessons but  did not.  My son said that he wants to  be a rock star lol.  Maybe he could  learn  how to  use an ableton controller and  explain to me how it works someday.  It's nice to see when both of my kids are getting along  when it comes to music.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Kennywood Excitement

On June 8th, we went to Kennywood.  We promised our kids last year that we will  visit again this theme park since they loved our first time.   Along the way, I see this neat   church structure as we were approaching  Kennywood.

Look how  excited these two Burritos as we entered the park.

We had such a fun day once again.  I'll post some more photos when time permits.  Thank you so much for dropping by and for leaving a comment or two.

On the other note, I am so happy that this blog  has reached  the  half a million  views already.  As to this date, the pageviews count is 501,562 (you can see it at  the sidebar widget). A HUGE thanks to all of you who frequently visits this blog.  

48 Hours In Phuket

For many travelers, whether they’re backpackers or holidaymakers, Phuket is a stopover island, where you’re able to rest and put your feet up before going on to your next destination. With islands like Koh Phi Phi just a short boat ride away, travellers are looking to get cheap accommodation for a night or two, experience the local nightlife and move on to another selection of beautiful beaches. This is not to say that Phuket isn’t a great holidaying destination however, and you’ll easily be able to stay here for weeks on end, especially with the amazing food, humble locals and wealth of activities. Let’s take a look at how to survive 48 hours in Phuket.

Travelling To Phuket

Travelling to Phuket can be a long journey, especially if you’re making your way from Europe. Thankfully, many airlines offer direct flights, and you can some yourself money by booking online at various price comparison websites. You’re looking at 10 hours from Sydney to fly to Phuket, while a flight from London takes just under 12 hours.

Kata Beach Nightlife

Kata Beach may not be the most vibrant place to party in Phuket, however it is the perfect spot to get a bite to eat, and sip cocktails whilst enjoying the sea breeze. If you’re looking for traditional bars to relax the night away in, instead of hugging the dance floor until the early hours of the morning, then Kata Beach is the place for you, and you’re not just confined to one section of the shoreline either. There are loads of great restaurants and places to drink all over the beach front, and many offer their own evening entertainment too. Kata Beach is the perfect place to spend the night if you’re planning on moving to another island in the morning, and accommodation here is pretty cheap too.

Dino Park Mini Golf

If you’re travelling to Phuket with your children, then you’re going to need some to keep them entertained during your stopover. Thankfully, Kata Beach can keep kids happy as well as adults, and one of the best places to do this is the Dino Park Mini Golf Course! Not only is it cheap to get in, but a round of mini golf gets cheaper the more you keep coming back to play. There’s also a kids restaurant on site too, overlooking the beach and offering a safe and secure play area. For the parents, there’s a great cocktail bar to try out, as well as pool for the whole family to relax in after a hard days sinking those balls!

Siam Niramit Phuket

Even if you are only staying in Phuket for 48 hours, it would be a shame to miss out on a cultural opportunity of a lifetime. Siam Niramit is an extravaganza of lights, acrobatics, music and traditional dance, and depending on what night you go you might even be able to catch some martial arts! If you like visual entertainment that engages all your senses, then this show is the one for you, and most impressively it runs without intermission for several hours. Divided into three unique acts which detail Thai culture, religion and even elements of the tsunami that destroyed many surrounding islands, the Siam Niramit show in Phuket is a great way to enjoy a night out without visiting the bars and clubs.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

How to Prepare for a Family Road Trip

Packing the kids in the car and hitting the road is a summertime rite of passage for many families. What better way is there to see the sights and bond? Yet long hours on the road can lead to whinging and crankiness if you're not careful, particularly if you're travelling with small children. To make the most of your family road trip, you'll want to be prepared!

Plan on Frequent Stops

Although a big part of the fun of a road trip is the spontaneity of it, you'll also want to research potential destinations carefully to find a kid-friendly route. Plan on driving for no more than 2 hours at a stretch when travelling with kids, and try to time your departure around naptime for best results. Look for parks, rest stops, and fun attractions along the way that will tire your children out for the next leg of the journey.
BUsy watching their movie during our  recent road trip.
Choose a Comfortable Car

Your Fiat 500 might be a great car for zipping around in the city, but it won't necessarily be the best option when you've got 3 kids in the backseat along with all their gear. It might be worth renting a reliable family hatchback for your journey, such as a Ford Focus or Nissan Pulsar.   If you're going to rent something, you could even splash out on something larger and more luxurious, like Infiniti cars or a full-size SUV. You'll want a car with a high safety rating and plenty of space in the backseat to keep the whole family happy and secure.

Prepare your Car

Along with choosing a family-friendly vehicle, you'll also need to have it inspected before you hit the road. Make sure your oil has been changed and that tires are filled properly so that you can help reduce the chance of a breakdown in the middle of nowhere.

Bring Snacks and Distractions

If you're making frequent stops, it's tempting to take advantage of all the fast food and convenience shops along the way. However, taking the time to pack fresh, healthy snacks will keep the family's spirits high. Bring a cooler with fresh fruit, cheese, healthy drinks, trail mix, and cereal bars to meet cravings. Get your children involved in selecting special toys or games for their road trip, and don't let them play with their new toys until they're in the car. If you're travelling with a baby or toddler, handing over one small new toy per hour is a good way to keep them occupied.
-the snack I prepared for our road trip-

There's never a way to guarantee that a road trip will go smoothly when you're travelling with children! But with a bit of time and preparation, you can make everyone more comfortable along the way.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Cleveland Ohio

On our  daughter's  birthday, we went to Cleveland to  see their famous  Art Museum.  That was  my first and also my children's first time  seeing Cleveland.  Anyway, below are just some quick snaps I was able to capture   while we were coming near the museum.  Enjoy!

Thanks to the inventor of GPS, it always  helped us  to have a smooth journey whenever we go on a road trip.  Below are some  artistic display outside the  Cleveland  Museum of Art.
Thanks for dropping by and for leaving a comment.

Monday, July 15, 2013

How to Remove Cigarette Odor

If you are not a smoker and have ever bought a house or car from a smoker or stayed in a hotel room after someone who smokes, you will well be aware of the smoke residue that adheres to all surfaces in the house or room. Washing the walls is a testament to the sticky dregs left behind. If the smoke is like that on the walls then you know all surfaces are just as polluted. It could be quite a challenge to remove the cigarette smoke remains, especially because the vapors from cigarettes can travel into and through air ducts, door cracks, heating and cooling vents and even into light fixtures. 

Days and tons of money spent could be remedied much quicker and less expensively with an OdorFree ozone generator. New homeowners or car owners are not the only ones who could benefit from using the OdorFree ozone generator. Proprietors of rental homes, apartments, smoking bars and casinos will also reap the benefits from learning how to remove cigarette odor in all areas smoke vapors can travel. 

The OdorFree ozone generator is simple to use- simply place the unit in the area to be treated and close it off. Turn the generator on and let it run. Depending on how long the area has been exposed to cigarette use the amount of time may take only a few hours or it may take several days. If cigarette smoke has infiltrated the area for years, then the unit may have to run for two to three days. 

Yoga DVD Need

I am trying to find me a yoga DVD that I can play in my portable DVD so I can bring it outside  my home and do yoga there.  I currently just do whatever  I can play though Youtube   but I can't do that outside.  I am trying to keep my routines  for fitness reasons.

 Do you have any recommendation? 

Gorgeous Homecoming Dresses

Mermaid Sweetheart Floor-Length Taffeta Prom Dress With Beading Sequins (018005254)I always tell my kids that they are very lucky that  they can enjoy the things that I never  had when I was growing up.    I tell them these things  so that they  could draw some inspiration from it.  Not all  children are fortunate enough to  have things that they  can  enjoy as kids.  I told them that I never owned a shoes when I was  in elementary because  my parents can't afford to buy  all nine kids each a pair.  

I remember when I was in High School, a friend of mine lent me  one of her dresses just so I could attend our  JS Prom.  I never a had the luxury to wear any of the gorgeous  prom gown that you can see nowadays.  I have no regrets with my experiences though but thankful that we can provide for  our children.  They don't have to   go through what I have  gone through in life, God-willing.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Celebrate Life

Go where you are celebrated not tolerated.
-Carrie Lee Shaw Troy-
One of the many photos I took when we visited Cleveland  on our daughter's 8th birthday.  Hubby and I  agreed to just  do a road trip instead of hosting a party for our  lovely darling.  We asked her if she likes the idea and she said yes.

Sugarcreek Roadtrips

It's been a while since we last visited Sugarcreek.  We used to go there almost every weekend just so we can drive around and see other ...

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