Food For the Gods

Food For the Gods is one of my favorite desserts, but it wasn't until I was an adult that I realized that no one outside the Philippines really knew what it was. Huh? It's not an American/European dessert? But we don't even grow dates or walnuts in the Philippines! 

It's okay to be a tourist

If there's one opinion I have that's going to get me side-eyed, it's this: I like going to "touristy" places and doing "touristy" things. Everyone is always praising the sights and sounds "off the beaten track" and scorning the "touristy" stuff, but for first-timers, I think it's great! They are "touristy" for a reason -- because they are big and beautiful and iconic representations of a place.  

Saint Chapelle

When one thinks of cathedrals in Paris, the two that most probably come to mind are Notre Dame and Sacre Coeur. On this visit to Paris, I visited one that is much smaller, much lesser-known, but arguably more magnificent. The Sainte Chapelle is literally a hidden jewel in Paris' long list of architectural marvels.

Sainte Chapelle (or Holy Chapel) was commissioned by Louis IX and consecrated in 1248.  Its most amazing feature is the Upper Chapel, with thousands of panels of stained glass illustrating more than 1,100 biblical scenes. Spoiler alert: if you plan to visit and don't want to spoil the surprise, DO NOT click on the "Read More" link, ignore the rest of this post and read another one!

Monet's Garden at Giverny

I have loved the works of Claude Monet ever since I was a teenager, and every time I have visited France I have wanted to take a trip to his home and garden at Giverny. But there always seemed to be too many other things to do, and too little time. Finally, finally I got the chance to visit this summer, and it was everything I had dreamed it to be. It was literally Monet's famous paintings come to life! 

Reconnecting with Nature at Yosemite National Park

I've often said that Yosemite is my favorite place on earth. Yes, I know that's something of an exaggeration, because home is where the heart is and wherever my family is has to be my favorite place, but as far as scenery goes, it's definitely my favorite.

But for someone whose favorite place it supposedly is, I haven't exactly been visiting it much. I used to visit around once a year until The Pea was born. After I became a mom, I think we visited the place two or three times, and we haven't been at all for the last 10 years.  A visit was well overdue. We took a short trip to Yosemite this summer, and I was reminded all over again why I say it's my favorite place.