Mövenpick Hotel, Mactan Island, Cebu (July 8-9, 2014)

beach-and-hotel-exterior

Photo taken from Travel Trilogy.

The Mövenpick Hotel in Mactan Island is a branch of the renowned Mövenpick Hotels and Resorts group, a tried and tested brand of hotels I have had the privilege of experiencing in a number of other countries when I was younger.

Anyway, I mentioned I’d make a review of our hotel stay on the blog post about our Cebu trip some weeks back, so here it is!

MÖVENPICK HOTEL MACTAN CEBU RATING SUMMARY
Price: 2.5/5.0
Accommodation: 4.0/5.0
Outdoor Facilities: 5.0/5.0
Customer Service: 4.5/5.0
Food: 4.5/5.0
TOTAL: 4.1/5.0

Click to see the rest of the review, including some of the photos we took during our stay! →

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Travel Diaries: Cebu, Philippines (July 8-12, 2014)

Common notion is that traveling is a hobby of the rich and the affluent, of people who have nothing much to do but see the world with their surplus finances; that ordinary people can’t afford it, or can, but choose not to because there are much more important things to spend traveling funds on. I’d like to think otherwise. Don’t get me wrong—I agree that sure, there could be more substantial expenditures to use money on and I completely understand that each individual has varying sets of priorities, but I want to dispel the belief that traveling has to be expensive and extravagant.

Indulging in the cultures and places that the world has to offer is not an activity exclusive to the rich; it is a means to self-discovery and the introduction of change in one’s psyche—much unlike superficial material things that don’t have the capability to fill an aching void in a person, traveling is actually worth every cent you spend on it.

Contrary to a major misconception, although traveling requires a bit of a budget, you don’t necessarily have to bear a hole in your pocket for it. The essence of a trip lies in the venue-exclusive experiences you get to gain from it, not in the level of luxury your accommodation and transportation have.

It’s been more than three months since my short 5-day trip to Cebu, but when I look back to my overall experience—from the luxurious hotel check-in at the posh Movenpick Mactan, to the pocket-friendly but practical and decent stay at Express Inn, and finally the free stay at my travel buddy’s friend’s house—I realize that so much had changed within me since then.

Taken with the GoPro Hero 3+ with post-processing on VSCOcam and Pixelmator

At NAIA Terminal 4 with my travel buddy and childhood friend, Joy (check out her travel blog).

Click here to see the rest of the photos and to read about my trip to Cebu! →

iCove Beach Hotel, Subic (May 19-20, 2014)

This site has permanently moved to erikadejesus.com. The exact same post you are currently viewing may also be viewed on the new website by clicking this link, so please head over there instead as I don’t maintain this website anymore. Thank you very much!

Grabbed from the iCove Beach Hotel Facebook page

Okay, I know I mentioned writing about having gone on a trip during my long absence from blogging on my previous post, but this is *not* it. This one’s a really fun summer getaway I had with my friends, Nikita, Kat, and Javier last May 19-20, and even though it’s been almost 3 months since then, I can’t let that experience not be commemorated through this blog post!

Like my old post on Club Balai Isabel, this was supposedly just a photo post of our trip, but again… there’s no harm in writing a review, right? Especially if it could be of help to people who are looking for places to go to in Subic! 🙂

iCOVE BEACH HOTEL RATING SUMMARY
Price: 5.0/5.0
Accommodation: 5.0/5.0
Outdoor Facilities: 5.0/5.0
Customer Service: 5.0/5.0
Food: 5.0/5.0
TOTAL: 5.0/5.0

Click to see the rest of the review, including some of the photos we took during our stay! →

On Working Out and Staying Motivated

A little more than a month ago, someone from Healthline contacted me, asking if I was interested in publishing an article of my choice by one of their authors. During that period of time, I was around a month into working out and going to the gym, but knowing myself I knew that in around two months’ time I would probably be lazing around already… and to my dismay, I was right. To think I actually thought I was making progress to a better, healthier lifestyle! 😦

Motivation. 👌 #kotd #vscocam

A post shared by Erika de Jesus (@erikadj) on

A few of the many workout gear I splurged on. Team Nike!

Thankfully, the article on “staying motivated to work out” was sent to me right on time. I should really resume eating clean and hitting the gym again (besides, I can’t let all my pretty workout clothes and shoes go to waste—plus I’m going to Cebu in around 2 weeks)…

Click here to read the article from Healthline! →

Club Balai Isabel, Batangas (May 15-16, 2014)

Taken with the iPhone 5 back camera with minor post-processing on Pixelmator and VSCOcam

A little more than a month ago, my best friend was still on her summer break and we were frustrated over not having gone out of town for summer yet (that wasn’t a problem in my case because I knew I was done with my undergraduate degree… forever… mwahahahaha). That led me to looking for places to stay in in Batangas, and thankfully I came across this gem called Club Balai Isabel. I had never heard of the place before I went to their website, but the moment that I did, they were throwing a 70% off promo for the last of summer. How lucky!

Taken with the Samsung Galaxy S4 Back Camera with minimal post-processing on Pixelmator and VSCOcam

Now, this was supposedly just a photo post of our trip, but then I thought… why not make it a review as well, in case some of you guys had been thinking of checking in at the same place? 🙂

CLUB BALAI ISABEL RATING SUMMARY
Price: 5.0/5.0
Accommodation: 4.5/5.0
Outdoor Facilities: 4.0/5.0
Customer Service: 3.0/5.0
Food: 5.0/5.0
TOTAL: 4.3/5.0

Click to see the rest of the review, including some of the photos we took during our stay! →

Thesis Submission Withdrawal Symptoms

(Left) With my thesis mates, Marla, Arthur, and Denise. I love those three to bits!
(Right) With our baby. Blood, sweat, tears, and love in all 171 pages… no transcripts, even!

CAUTION: Extremely sappy post ahead because it was my last day in college yesterday (I HOPE) and I was writing this at 3 o’ clock in the morning (and we all know that’s the time when all the feels come out). Don’t say I didn’t warn you! 😆

We finally submitted our undergraduate thesis yesterday and the following quote seems really applicable to my life as of the moment…

Never make anything your everything, because once it’s gone you’ll be left with nothing.

…LOL ok I know, I’m being overly melodramatic—I should be happy beyond words right now. Don’t get me wrong, I *am,* but it’s just that I have never exerted that much effort for anything in my 20 years of existence (and for that long of a period of time), and now that it’s over I’m feeling a bit disoriented because I made my whole life revolve around it. I mean, I invested eight whole months of my life in that 171-page document. Now that I’m finally done, what the hell do I do with my life!? It also totally doesn’t help that I got so used to being with my thesis mates for the majority of the term (countless sleepovers, too) and I suddenly won’t be seeing them for an extended period of time. Talk about a major case of separation anxiety and excessive attachment! 😥

Kidding and drama aside, I swear, nothing beats the sense of accomplishment getting your thesis hardbound and submitted gives (except maybe garnering best thesis and/or getting it published ha-ha please pray for us on this one). Thank You Lord! We couldn’t be more grateful! ❤️

P.S. I guess you’ll be seeing me here more often now that school’s finally done (for good, I hope—here’s to the wishful and prayerful thinking that I don’t fail any of my other subjects this term and that I get to graduate college this June 2014), huh? Can’t wait to finally write and publish all my pending posts! 😉

Guerlain and MAC Haul

Because I have yet to find time to write a full-fledged blog post on my MAC Technique Makeup workshop experience and my hair and makeup stint (thesis revisions at 10 in the morning OMG), here’s a pretty photo I took of my Guerlain Crazy Paris Collection haul + MAC mini haul from a few weeks back!

Taken with the iPhone 5 Back Camera with minor post-processing on VSCOcam

From L-R: Guerlain Crazy Paris Eye Palette, Guerlain Parure Gold in #02 Beige Clair, Guerlain Crazy 68 Terracotta Bronzer, Guerlain Crazy Champs Élysées Météorites Pearls, MAC Satin Lipstick in Twig, MAC Fluidline in Blacktrack, MAC Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Superb, and MAC Blot Powder in Medium.

The only items I’ve tried so far (excluding MAC Twig and MAC Blot Powder since I’ve had them before) are the foundation and the Météorites, because they’re the only products that would barely show wear on pictures and I haven’t shot the makeup individually (lol #erikaproblems). I will by the end of next week, though! Ah, I really can’t wait for school to be over!