because once is enough

Friday, June 3, 2016

As best friends for more than 13 years now, we thought we've done everything together -- watch a movie, go to the beach, attend a baptism, get drunk, dance in a concert, name it.

My high school best friends
But shoot arrows together? No, that's not in our Black Book of Things to Do As a Squad. We thought that archery is for the more soshal or sporty group of friends.

Being 'from the South', we're completely fine with just meeting up at 7pm in a new food spot in BF, have a few drinks when someone's heartbroken, or chill in a coffee shop afterwards when were feeling 'Tita.'

In one of our Tita dinners, we've talked about giving archery a try. I tried it last year with a friend, and boy, did we love it. I wrote about my one time, big time experience in Kodanda Archery Range in Makati Park Square here. Coincidentally, my friend Guamela found my blog online when she searched about Kodanda.

She shared the link to our Messenger chat group, and we immediately planned to visit the BF branch. Yes, we're South girls and we thought that should stay here forever. But I found out that there's a newer branch in SM Mall of Asia, and thought that it wouldn't hurt if we get out of ParaƱaque even for just one, big time.

Thus, last Sunday, Xiju went to Kodanda. Xiju is the name of our high school barkada. It's a short version of XiJuPiaNiGuaMa, which stands for our names -- Sheena, Judy, Sophia, Janine, Guamela, and Marivic. We've been girlfriends since high school and we've been through a lot. We've been through deaths, baptisms, birthdays, anniversaries, breakups, and someday, weddings.

We're the "Girls At the Back," the girls your parents warned you about, the girls whom you don't want to mess with at school. We know each other so well that I was a bit nervous when I brought them to Kodanda.

Getting There

We chose the 11am slot so we can have lunch right after. We met up at the venue and as usual, someone's late. The Kodanda Archery Range in SM Mall of Asia is located at the MoA Arena Annex, or what they call as MAAX. It's this weird looking building in Coral Way, just behind the MoA Arena.
That weird building is MAAX
Once you're at MAAX, at the Ground Floor you will see a pathway between Coffee Bean and Yellow Cab to the parking lot. Kodanda is at the immediate right side.

Kodanda at Mall of Asia Arena Annex

Warming up

When everyone has arrived, we read the archery guidelines on the wall. Basically, no horseplaying (good luck to us), no slippers, and tie your hair up. My crazy friends then started to braid each other's hair. Haha.
How to be Katniss 101
Rules and etiquette

Gearing up

After braiding and taking selfies, Jasmine, the Kodanda staff then helped us gear up. We found out that she's not just an archer and a member of the Philippine team. Moreover, she's an Olympian. Wow.

Learning the Basics

As newbies to archery, we were taught of the basics of shooting. As the only leftie in the group, I was facing on the other side. Another important rule is to respect the other archers and to shut up when shooting (we broke the rule, sorry).


Shooting arrows

We were given a bow each, taught the right stance, learned the whistle signals, and then we're sent off to the Hunger Games. Even as a second-timer, I needed a refresher. Mental note: I must do this more often.

And me

Hitting the target

Well, luckily, I was able to shoot better than them, but they were all good as first-timers. Although there were times when the arrow bounces back or fails to release, we were all just laughing and enjoying our time. For a one-hour sesh, we were able to finish a couple of rounds and even correct our stance.

Taking photos

During breaks (or not), we asked the staff to have our photos taken. We even have a video releasing our arrows simultaneously! Squad goals, indeed, was the proper hashtag for our photos on social media.


Resting our bows

We took home our targets and thought of framing them and hanging them on our walls. Our first archery experience in Kodanda is definitely one for the books!

Ke gaganda in Kodanda :P
It was tiring and challenging (especially it requires discipline and focus, which the lack of had us sent out of our classrooms). Yet we enjoyed it a lot because it was something out of our comfort zone, it's something different, yet we succeeded in our first try.

The Kodanda experience made us think of other ways to bond -- try escape room games like Breakout or Mystery Manila's, or other sports like ice skating. 

After being humans surviving in a zombie apocalypse, we turned into zombies hungry for humans. We had a great lunch and an even a greater dinner with Sheena -- who is seriously a South girl and must stay there. Lol.

What a Sunday with my favorite people on earth. Thanks to Kodanda for giving us an experience that I know for sure we'll discuss in our Tita dates forever.

Xiju forever!
Kodanda Archery Range is located at 111A Mall of Asia Arena Annex (MAAX) Building,
Coral Way cor. J.W. Diokno Blvd., Pasay City.
Open Monday to Sunday, from 10:00 am - 10:00 pm.
Php 580.00/person for a one-hour session


Sunday, January 25, 2015

Finally. Norman Reedus, Jennifer Lawrence and I have something in common.

We can shoot arrows. Yup, I can hit the target with a bow and arrow! Well, almost. šŸ˜Š

With just an hour of archery lesson at Kodanda Archery Range, I was able to know the basics of this soshal sport.

Yes, I proved that even us "jejes" can pull this off! All it takes is P500 for a one-hour session and you'll be able to learn what to do and what not to do when zombie apocalypse comes. Worth every peso, right?

It's not in my bucket list, but learning this unusual sport is something I'm proud of. For a lefty like me, it's already an achievement if I learn a new sport. I remember how hard it was to play table tennis back in college when all of my classmates were right-handed.

Pogi 'no? šŸ˜œ Photo by Roanne Duran of

What can you expect from a one-hour sesh at Kodanda? 

First, you'll know what is your dominant eye. You'll also be introduced to the gears that you have to use and you can use them for free. They have pads for the arm, the hand, and the chest.

Archer mode on! Photo by Roanne Duran of

Second, you'll learn the different signals used by the instructor on when to get your bow, when to shoot, and when to retrieve your arrows.

Third, you'll be able to shoot arrows in varying distances. You'll start with a short range target. When you've mastered it, you can try long range target where a balloon is placed on the bull's eye for more excitement.

Fourth, you can watch other archers and ask them for tips.

Finally, you get to take home your paper target for your family and friends to see. "Look, Ma. I hit the bull's eye. I can save this family!"

Have I told you yet that archery is fun? Photo by Roanne Duran of

What not to expect

One of the rules in archery is to be respectful to those who are still playing. Since its a sport that involves concentration and focus, horse playing is not allowed in the range. Channel your inner civilized self first before you enter the range, I suggest. Again, it's a sport that values respect and upholds discipline.

What I learned in my One Time, Big Time experience in Kodanda

1. If you did not hit the target on your first try, you can always get the arrows back and try again. Nobody gets it right the first time, so just enjoy and give it your best shot.

2. Don't be afraid to ask questions. As for me, my right arm got bruised because my stance was wrong all the while! My trainer told me to change my stance and since then, I kept hitting the target. Haha.

3. Take it easy; don't get all pissed off when you can't do it.


The best time to go to Kodanda is during off-peak hours, which is basically before 5PM. Students and employees go there after school/office hours to release their stress. They are open everyday, yep, Monday to Sunday from 10:30AM to 7:30PM.

Kodanda is located at the basement of Makati Cinema Square in Chino Roces Ave., Makati City. It's just a jeepney ride away from the MRT Magallanes Station.

Kodanda Archery Range in Makati Cinema Square. Photo from
Give it a try and I swear you'll enjoy it! Bring your BAE, your friends, your crush or even your entire family over!

And when the zombie apocalypse comes, or a real-life Hunger Games happens, I know you'll thank me that I shared this with you.

And, you're welcome. :)

Like Kodanda Archery Range on Facebook or follow them on Instagram. They also have a shop where they sell all things archery.

What does Kodanda mean, you ask? Find out for yourself.


Friday, November 8, 2013

Isang araw, nagmamasid ako sa aking Facebook news feed, napansin ko, medyo nakakarami na 'tong mga taong 'to ah. Dumadami sila, in fairness! Eto yung 25 taong nakakatuwa (or nakakatawa), onli in da Peysbuk!

Yung mga taong...

1. Magpopost ng medyo vague na status tapos pag may nagcomment ng "ano yan?" or "bakit?" ang sagot, "secret."

2. Magcocomment sa status na wala namang connect, like, "te, pasahan mo ko ng load."

3. Nagcocomment sa picture ng baby na parang yung baby yung kinakausap. "Kamusta ka, baby boy?"

4. Magpapahayag ng opinyon about politics, current events in English pa, wrong grammar naman.

5. Magpopost ng picture kahit blurred or against the light.

6. Magpapalit ng profile picture tapos isa-isang pasasalamatan lahat ng nag-Like para umangat sa news feed.

7. Hindi nagrereply sa birthday greetings, kahit yung ineffortan.

8. Yung mga nagpapaka-creative na gumagawa ng collage, tapos ang liliit naman nung photos individually. Langkwents.

9. Araw-araw naguupload ng picture ng baby niya, tulog, gising, umiiyak, tumatawa, kumakain. Photo album ang solusyon dyan or scrapbook.

10. Magpopost ng "off to SM" pero selfie or OOTD lang naman talaga ang pakay.

11. Pinapangalandakan na religious siya, sa Facebook nagsusulat ng prayers. I-tag mo rin kaya si Lord.

12. Nagchecheck-in lang pag nasa lugar na pangmayaman.

13. Nang-aakit ng masasamang loob sa pamamagitan ng pagpopost ng "home alone" or pagchecheck-in sa "Lot 1, Blk 2 Chever st. Zone 3, Sitio 4, Brgy. 918, Diliman, Quezon City." Lagyan mo kaya ng kulay ng gate.

14. Sabik magkaron ng kakambal, doble doble pa yung picture, isa lang naman itsura. Kinaganda mo yan?!

15. Nagsa-status ng all caps na manloloko yung jowa niya tapos maya-maya mahal na mahal na niya ulit. Tapos bukas with pic na naka-kiss.

16. Hindi pa nakakaalis sa sumpa ng mga apps na "God wants you to know" at "Photo of the Day."

17. Akala mo walang pinagsamahan, kung maka-greet ng "happy birthday," "HBD" lang.

18. Di mo alam saan pinagkukukuha yung mga pinapang-comment na images.

19. Nagpopost ng mga picture ng sugat, tissue sa ilong, bandaid na may design. Gamutin mo, te! Di kami mahahawa kahit anung post mo nyan!

20. Naguupload ng isang album 174 photos sa iisang lugar lang with two other friends na panigurado may isang picture na ang posing ay "Bulag, Pipi, Bingi."

21. Muntik na lumampas sa character limit ng Facebook kasi wagas makakwento ng encounter niya with a masamang-loob. Ipa-blotter mo kaya.

22. Lakas maka-brightness tsaka Camera 360 sa picture pero sa personal...

23. Sini-screen shot pa yung mga sweet text messages or video call nilang magjowa. Tapos magugulat (worse, magagalit) yung boylet kasi di niya alam na inupload. Well, part of the surprise yun. Sweet diba?

24. Lahat na hinashtag! Best in Hashtag! I-push mo yan!

25. Nagtthrowback ng picture na siya lang yung maganda. HAHAHA.

And finally!

26. Ipi-PM ka pa talaga para ipa-Like yung picture nila ng jowa niya! Kalokah!

Talaga naman! Onli in da Peysbuk! :)

Guilty or not guilty? You can invoke your right against self-incrimination. LOL.

Peace! :)


Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Hi, everyone! :)

Some of you already know that I have a new job, and that means I have to complete my pre-employment requirements all over again! Just this morning, I picked up my long-overdue voter's ID at the COMELEC office in ParaƱaque with ease! I just had to call them the day before to confirm if my ID is already available for pickup. After that, since I'm already near the ParaƱaque City Hall, I've decided to get a police clearance as well. And boy, it was a breeze! Maybe it's because of the new government, the system's improved, and I'm thankful for that.

Here's how I got my police clearance in ParaƱaque: 
(Author's note: These instructions apply to getting police clearance in ParaƱaque. They may not be the same for all cities.)

Step 0: Go to the ParaƱaque City Hall. You can view a map here.

Step 1: Get a community tax certificate or cedula. A cedula is basically the only requirement you need to have to secure a police clearance. To get one, go to the Treasury office, and fill out a paper with your details, such as birthday, name, address, etc. Next, you will be paying a certain amount for your tax, which could be as low as Php 7.25, depending on your tax requirement.

Step 2: Go to the Police Clearance processing window 1. There, an officer will ask you your purpose for securing a police clearance. Tell him/her that it's for local employment. He/she will then give you an order for payment form indicating how much you should pay for the police clearance. For local employment, you need to pay Php 110. Once you receive the form, you should go back to the Treasury to pay for it.

Step 3: Go to Window 2. LOLZ. Once you're there, you just have to go through each window until your police clearance is released. But of course, I'll give you the details. On the Window 2, an officer will ask you to pay an additional Php 75 for the photo and printing. Don't worry! You don't have to go to the Treasury to pay for it; you'll just pay there (which makes it more questionable) LOLZ. She will also give you a form that you need to fill out. Take note some of the information needed from you: height, weight.

Step 4: Fingerprinting. Next, you will go to the finger printing guy who will get your prints. TIP: Bring your own wet wipes. A boy next to the finger printing guy is selling wet wipes for Php 3 per sheet! It's too much! Haha. But you'll be needing that so you should just be prepared. The Kuya will do the finger printing job for you, so don't worry if you don't know which finger will go to the ink first. LOLZ

Step 5: Have your photo taken. You're close enough to getting your police clearance! Just have your photo taken, and you're almost there! Remember: it's okay to smile. :)

Step 6: Wait for your name to be called. Holding your police clearance receipt, you will now just have to wait for your name to be called. Once your turn comes, read through the form to check your details, or if there are misspelled names or wrong information. The girl who got her clearance ahead of me saw that her gender was male instead of female. She had it changed right then and there. Me, I got mine fine, so I'm done! :)

One Time, Big Time Tips:
1. Be there early. Go as early as 8AM to avoid crowds.
2. Bring exact amount of money, so payment transactions will be easier.
3. Bring your own black ballpen.
4. Wear smart casual but comfy clothes.
5. Don't hesitate to ask questions. It's cool. :)

Let me know if this post was able to help you! Thanks! :)

Stay tuned, I'll be writing about how to get an NBI clearance the hassle-free way next. :)


Thursday, September 19, 2013

Imagine being judged by someone who doesn't know you; badmouthed to almost 30 passengers inside the bus with you... at freaking 6 in the freaking morning.

Location: on a red Admiral Transport Bus (Nova-Baclaran route)
Time: 09/19/2013 06:21AM
Characters: Me as "Me;" Lady Conductor as "Ati"

Me: (abot bayad) Ignacia po.
Ati: Hindi ko na bibilangin to ah.
Me: 13 po yan.
Ati: (uses her fare computer, shows screen) 15 eh.
Me: Ha? Timog po yan eh. Ignacia lang po ako.
Ati: Eh pag pinipindot ko yung 13 kilometers, eto yung lumalabas eh.
Me: Araw-araw ako sumasakay 13 lang bayad ko.
Ati: Eh anung magagawa ko yan yung lumalabas.
Me: Timog kasi yan, eh hindi naman Timog ang Quezon Ave. in the first place.
Ati: (galit) Eh di wag nalang.
Me: (gets 2 pesos from wallet) Eto na, baka singilin ka pa eh.
Ati: Alangan namang ako pa mag-abono para sayo no! Baka singilin... Minamaliit mo ba pagkatao ko? Hindi porket konduktor lang ako, maayos ang trabaho ko. Blah blah blah... (continues saying bad, judgmental words about me while she's getting payments of other passengers)
Me: -_-

Come Mother Ignacia...
Me: Ignacia lang po ako.
Ati: Dito ka lang?
Me: Opo.
Ati: (hesitates for 3 seconds) Dito lang daw.
Me: (goes down 500 meters away from the real bus stop) -_-

Bad trip lang. Ako na nga agrabyado, ako pa pinagmukang mata pobre at mayabang sa harap ng maraming tao. People who claim that they are poor para makuha ang simpatya ng iba, saying, "kahit konduktor ako, hindi ako katulad mo na nangmamata ng ibang tao," OMG.

And Ati, you're watching too much teledrama. Gasgas na yang script mo. At pasensya na, hindi ako mayaman gaya ng iniisip mo. Eh di sana hindi ako sumasakay ng ordinary bus. Eh di sana hindi ko pinagdamot yung dalawang piso. Mukha lang akong mayaman, pero parehas lang tayong may kumakalansing na barya sa bulsa. Gusto ko lang naman ipaglaban yung tama at yung karapatan ko.

Oh well, the pains of being a commuter. Not to mention the "painful" people you meet everyday.


Photo and video of "Ati" to follow.


Sunday, July 21, 2013

There's a newly-opened spa near Kevin's place, and we just had to be among the first ones to try it. Its name was familiar, because I've seen some of their branches all over the metro. But we're lucky that a Banahaw Heals Spa branch has finally opened within Tandang Sora, Quezon City. Here's our one time, big time experience with Banahaw Heals Spa:

Banahaw Heals Spa has impressed us from the moment we inquired through SMS for a reservation. The response was quite fast! Even more when we entered the place. The receptionist was kind and accommodating, and the place was pretty quiet. She told us to take our seats, then handed out some forms for us to fill out. We're quite impressed since it was our first time to experience that kind of treatment. The form contains some questions answerable by yes or no that inquires about your health and your present condition (i.e., are you pregnant? when and what was your last meal before the massage?) LOLZ.

I'd like to also note that the receptionist asked us if we want to add some more services, and Kevin eagerly said yes to try out the Ventusa method for an additional 100 Php. Galing mag-sales talk ni atey! It was also kind of her to ask if we'd like to have a 'couple room' unlike the other spa we've been to who just assumed that we're a couple! Haha. Our therapists were also kind to engage us to a small talk before we head to the spa room.

Next, the therapists led us to our room, and it was quite a big one compared to the spa we used to go to. It also has a divider so it won't be awkward for new couples (or even friends) to change clothes. Anyway, I opted for their signature 5-in-1 healing massage. It was a mixture of Swedish, Shiatsu, and Thai massage. It started out well, and I loved every pinch and press my therapist gave my tired body. LOL. It was kinda hard, but the effect on my body was wonderful. We loved the massage, but I was worried during the head massage part, when she was pulling my hair so hard I thought my head's gonna rip! LOLZ. So yeah, for the warm welcome and the massage, we give Banahaw Heals Spa our thumbs up!

There are just some things that were running in my head when I was lying on the massage bed. I was actually writing this post inside my head while the therapist was massaging my back. These are just some points that the spa could improve, which are definitely okay since they just opened.

1. The background music was not quite relaxing for me. The spa was playing instrumentals of popular love songs, which made it hard for me to relax because I kept on singing the lyrics on my head! I think they could just play piano pieces that are unknown to people but still gives the calm and peace the customers need.

2. From my side, I could hear the trucks and tricycles on the road. Kevin said he didn't hear those distractions, but I heard honks of vehicles passing by outside. Maybe the spa could invest more on soundproofing boards.

3. I didn't like the taste of the complimentary ginger tea. Well I guess I was just surprised that the tea served to us was not like the one we are expecting to have. I would love to have some nice hot tea like Earl Grey or just some Lipton Yellow Label tea, but I didn't expect that strong ginger tea. Maybe they could inform their customers next time of what kind of tea they'll be serving? Sorry if I'm asking too much.

That's all. Anyway, what we loved most about the spa is that they offer cheaper rates! The rates were so convincing that we opted to sign for membership. Next time we'll go there, we can avail great massage for a lesser price! And the membership is yeah, forevs! :)

You should try out the Banahaw Heals Spa because we loved it! :)

Check out their branches here.


Thursday, June 13, 2013

Today, Twitter helped me decide what to eat for lunch. I saw that #McSpicy is trending on Twitter locally, and being a self-confessed spicy hot chick that I am (LOL), I gave it a try. Apparently, the McSpicy Chicken Burger just arrived today, and I'm guessing I'm one of the first 100 people who will write a review about it.

The New McSpicy Chicken Burger

How much is it?

I bought the McSpicy Chicken Burger a la carte for only Php 80. I decided to just cook my own fries at home. Btw, a regular McSpicy Chicken Burger value meal costs Php 115, while a large one will cost you Php 135. It's definitely expensive for a burger, but is it worth it?

The New McSpicy Chicken Burger with homemade fries

Is it big?

The size of McSpicy Chicken Burger is just like your regular Burger McDo, but the chicken patty is relatively bigger. As you can see, it's not the typical round shape patty but more like a medium-sized chicken fillet.

The New McSpicy Chicken Burger

The New McSpicy Chicken Burger beside a Nikon lens cap for size comparison

What's in it?

The McSpicy Chicken Burger is composed of a medium-sized chicken fillet, McDonald's special mayo dressing, lettuce, and some chopped onions. I think it would taste better with a slice of tomato.

Inside the New McSpicy Chicken Burger 

Is it spicy?

Well, the box of the McSpicy Chicken Burger has a disclaimer that says "Chicken spiced right" and "With just the right amount of spice." If you are expecting a Tabasco hot sauce-level of spicy, then you'll be disappointed with it.  As a spicy-food enthusiast (WOW), I can say that the McSpicy Chicken Burger just tickled my taste buds a little. But it didn't make me long for a drink because the "spiciness" is barely there. So if you're not that into spicy food, you can definitely enjoy this McSpicy Chicken Burger. But for "extremists" like me, it's kinda boring and tasteless, so to speak.

The New McSpicy Chicken Burger disclaimer

Is it worth buying again?

Yeah, sure, somehow the McSpicy Chicken Burger satisfied my hunger, but its taste isn't something that you would really crave for. In a nutshell, it's your ordinary chicken burger with a hint of spice.

I didn't really find McSpicy Chicken Burger as something unforgettable or exceptional, though I still recommend that you try the McSpicy Chicken Burger for the sake of trying it. :)

Still, thumbs up, McSpicy Chicken Burger. Burp!


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