Viewing Niagara Falls from USA side and Canada side

If you are in to nature and want to see some of the wonders of the world. Niagara Falls is another God’s creation of a beauty that never fails. It was a looooooong drive from Maryland to Niagara Falls, New York. But it was all worth the long ride.

We first visited Niagara Falls back in September 2009. It was only me and my husband and some friends, no babies yet. Oh when we got there I could not explain the feeling of being able to see such an amazing sight of beauty, It was breathtaking!

View of the falls from the USA side
View of the falls from the USA side

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Rainbow bridge connecting USA and Canada
Rainbow bridge connecting USA and Canada
Ferry boat ride maid of the mist
Ferry boat ride maid of the mist
Viewing deck from USA side
Viewing deck from USA side

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Cave of the winds
Cave of the winds

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Picnic
Picnic
Cave of the winds
Cave of the winds

Last year, our relatives from Italy came to visit us last summer and we wanted to share that whole experience to them. It was such a great family trip. My daughter appreciated the view too. Nature has a lot to offer for us, we just have to take care of it.

With the whole family
With the whole family

As for things to do while you’re there. They have the ferry boat ride (maid of the mist) where they can take you closer to the falls. They also have a cave of the winds experience, you’ll be at the side of the falls. Be prepared to get wet even though they’ll provide you with ponchos and sandals. You can get these experience from both sides.

Back in 2009 we got to view the falls on both sides. The New York side and Canada side. See which view do you like.

Overall, it was such a great experience for everybody. As you can see even though it was a very long drive (8-10hours depending on the traffic) we still went again for the second time. You can never get tired of this view.

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How to be successful when trying to lose weight

I am not an expert on losing weight but being able to work in a slimming center for 5 years and being in the healthcare field made me come up with this tips. Because most of my friends ask me about this all the time.

How come You have maintained my weight even after having 2 kids? Just to let you all know, I am not those lucky ones who only had the belly baby and shrank right away after giving birth. I gained 45 lbs on the first one and 35 lbs on my second pregnancy. Be the judge and Let me know if you agree..

1. MIND SET. think of something that you achieved that you wanted so bad. Didn’t you put your mind to it at first and thought about it and told yourself I’m gonna do this and I will succeed! If you already think like that then you are on the right track.

You have to condition your mind. It is so powerful that if you think and imagine it everyday. Then your whole body will go with it.

2. Motivation. What motivates you? what ever reasons you have, if it motivates you then continue with it. My motivation is, I want to be able to back to my pre baby weight or close to it. Because I always feel good when I was that weight. I am energetic, easy to find clothes that fit me, I just feel comfortable.

2. Discipline. There is always temptation for us here and there. But if you are disciplined. You can stay away from those temptation and be focused.

3. Just do it! start! everything that we do is always hard on the first try. But your body can adjust with it. It just have to be a routine for you. Give yourself at least 15- 30 mins at least 3-5x a week.

Those list of clean diet and exercises will not show results if you do not have these key ingredient. You have to have all right ingredient to be successful in losing weight, actually on everything. Be consistent.

Enjoy your journey. You can chit chat with me, a real human being if you do not want to go through this by yourself. Let me boost your confidence. As I always tell my friends. Let us help each other.

A week after giving birth to my second baby.
A week after giving birth to my second baby.
4 weeks post partum. Just doing little Zumba at home. 15-30 mins whenever I can.
4 weeks post partum. Just doing little Zumba at home. 15-30 mins whenever I can.

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I do clean eating and exercise. I also have cheat days.
Hope to see all of you succeed. I just want to inspire everybody who is struggling.

If you want to share stories with me. My email is iannemcabangon@gmail.com

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Tips when traveling (flying) with kids

I started traveling with my daughter when she was 3 months old. It was tough, every travel is an experience. I travelled with Adi (was 3 months old) and with my mother in law. I am not saying I am a pro but I can give some tips that we learned from our travels that will make your travel very comfortable and convenient.

1. If you travel with little kids who doesn’t know how to swallow during take off and landing. For them not to cry, give them milk or anything they can drink so they will not feel the pressure on their ears. It always works for me.

2. If you are traveling with infant in lap. You can request bassinet from the airlines. Most of them offer it for free. In that case you baby will be able to sleep well during the flight. Everybody happy, right?

3. Bring toys that they like, that will entertain them or it can calm them down. Like my daughter, her companion was her Daisy Duck stuffed toy. It was a charm, she’ll just hug it and it made her go to sleep.

4. Some older kids can be entertained by your gadgets, tablets, iPads and the likes. Because not all airlines has TV screen on every seat specially if it is a domestic flight. Mostly international flight does.

5. Bring in some of their favorite snacks. Because they might not like what the airline offers.

6. Check in online if you can if you are traveling as family so that you can have the seat together. Because on the day, even if you are early at the airport to check in and if the flight is full. There are a lot of people who also checked in online. You do not want to be seated apart or asking other people to switch seats for you.

7. Do not forget to pack first aid kits and your child’s medicine if they have any. You might need it along the way and some places might not have the medicine your child need.

Adi at 2.5 years old with her Minnie Mouse and iPad en route Philippines. At Taoyuan International airport, Taiwan.
Adi at 2.5 years old with her Minnie Mouse and iPad en route Philippines. At Taoyuan International airport, Taiwan.

Adi at 4 playing with bubbles and Aidan at 19 months. En route Las Vegas from Maryland.
Adi at 4 playing with bubbles and Aidan at 19 months. En route Las Vegas from Maryland.

Happy travels! I hope these tips will help you.

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Adi turns 5

It feels like it was just yesterday when I we had her in our arms for the first. I honestly couldn’t remember hearing her first cry. I was so exhausted for pushing for almost 2 hours before she finally came out.

It was so all worth it! A healthy baby girl came out. And know is turning out to be a lovely little lady.

She is very caring, smart and a girly girly like me. She always likes wearing my shoes and clothes and everything.

Our bonding moments are practicing her gymnastic moves, exercising, crafts making bracelet, reading books, singing… And a lot more.

I just want to share to all of you all they joys of having a daughter. She can be like your best friend.

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Details:
Adi’s dress: Gymboree
Sandals and necklace : target
Balloon : party city

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Pajama Day at Work

You don’t get to wear pajamas at work. Since we were allowed to do it for a day. Might as well dress up for it.

When my supervisor reminded me about wearing pajamas at work. I happened to be at target. So I went to their sleepwear section and picked these pair of exhilaration PJ’s.

I looked for fashionable, comfortable and professional looking PJ’s. And I found it! I wore them. Even my co workers stated they need to get cute PJ’s like mine.

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PJ set (exhilaration) and watch (times) from Target

The size for the top is relaxed fit.

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Got Spider or varicose Veins problem?

Here are some solutions for your problem.

Jergens sunless tanning mousse or tanning lotion – If you are just worried about how they look and you have a fair skin. Use this Jergens sunless tanning mousse. Even with just one application you will already have the sun kissed looking skin to hide those veins. The application depends on how tanned you want it. This is very temporary the color can last for a week and is very cheap.

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sclerotherapy – it invasive, they will inject a medicine to your spider veins or smaller varicose veins to shrink them. This is also temporary. When I has this procedure. The doctor explained to me that the veins are like highways. It is traffic that is why it bulges and when to do sclerotherapy you are clearing the traffic but other veins will build another highway eventually.

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This is kind of expensive too. Most of the vein clinic offer this but because it is more of cosmetics. Most insurance won’t pay for it. Check out groupon for some deals in your area or if you really want the experts in vein. Try checking out Vein restoration of America.

For bigger varicose veins, most of the insurance covers these specially if you are experiencing pain. Which happened to me during my second pregnancy. I scheduled an appointment with them. Went there and they did an ultrasound so they can see where the blockage is. How big the blockage is and where they are.

From then they will determine what type of treatment they will give you. They have experienced doctors that will prescribe the best treatment for you. I had catheterization where they heat up the veins to shrink them, the second treatment was ultrasound guided foam sclerotherapy, lastly was just regular sclerotherapy.

I had to wear compression stockings right after all sclerotherapy sessions. That should also be prescribed by your doctor.

Check out which ones you want but go to the vein clinics if there is pain. These are all out patient and you can drive back home right after. It is nice if this be done in the winter time because you might have some bruise right after that will last for few weeks. There are also some exercises that you can’t do after for a week. The doctors will talk you through it.

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Dressed up for Mother’s Day

I had a great Mother’s Day celebration. My mom was with us too to celebrate it. We went to church and ate out and did some shopping.

The weather called for some maxi dress again. It was 80 something degrees.

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Mom’s style
Dress from bloomingdales
Sandals from Steve Madden
Accessories from old navy
Watch from Michael kors

Kids style:
Adi:
Dress from Macy’s
Sandals from Target
Headband from gap kids

Aidan:
Shirt and pants from baby gap
Shoes from converse kids

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In transit… Taiwan.

We were in Taiwan for 19 hours waiting for our connecting flight back to the USA. When I booked my tickets two way from NY to Manila and Manila to NY I already know that the connecting flight was long because I prefer to get the cheap ticket. You all know how it goes if you buy cheap flights.

I was thinking we can tour Taiwan for half a day and see what they have there. Another country to visit. So I went ahead and booked a hotel for us since we have our 2 year old daughter with us then.

What I didn’t know was China Airlines has a complimentary hotel already booked for us included in flight itinerary.

So here’s what happened….

We were on our way back to the U.S., arrived in Taiwan and went to China airlines kiosk to ask how we can get to our hotel. The receptionist was very helpful, they gave us a sticker with the name of the hotel so the driver who’s gonna pick us up can see us right away. Didn’t pay attention at the sticker since he was the one who put it on us. When we get to the exit the driver was already there and helped us get in the car.

While en route the hotel, I was wondering why we were traveling for almost 15 mins because as far as I remembered it should only be 5 mins away from the airport. But I didn’t say anything.

At the hotel, I found out we checked in at Taoyuan hotel. All the staff was nice, they gave us the keys and stated that we have a free breakfast and then tomorrow morning the driver will drive us back to the airport so we can catch our next flight. So went along but I already knew that I had to call the airline and ask when they took us to this hotel.

We cheked in the room, it was descent. Not the hotel that I booked which was much better, The Novotel.

After putting everything down any resting for a little hit. I started calling the airline. We were worried we’re gonna have to pay for this hotel. Plus I want to stay to the hotel that I booked.

Here is what happened. Since I booked my plane ticket from cheapoair.com there was no agent who informed me that China Airlines gives complimentary hotel since the layover was 19 hours. So it turned out that I didn’t have to pay anything for this.

Kudos to China airlines!! we were also pleased with their airline staff. They were very helpful.

So what we did was checked out and we took a cab to get to Novotel (the hotel that I separately booked for us). The difference between Novotel and Taoyuan was that Novotel was new, 5 mins away from the airport and it is nicer.
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Freeway.
Freeway.
Taoyuan  Hotel lobby.
Taoyuan Hotel lobby.

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Taiwan's side street.
Taiwan’s side street.
Novotel rooms.
Novotel rooms.

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Authentic Chinese noodle soup.
Authentic Chinese noodle soup.

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Novotel lobby
Novotel lobby

The other hotel that the airline booked for us was an older hotel but still nice and clean, staff was also nice and helpful too.

That was one hell of an experience.

Before I forget, another stupidity on my end. I didn’t’t looked at the whole itinerary. Before we get to Taiwan the pilot announced that we were approaching Osaka, Japan. And I panicked because I thought we went to the wrong flight. Mu husband was like check the itinerary. He doesn’t know any thing about the whole trip because he left it under my hands. I found out too that the flight was from JFK-Osaka-Taiwan-Manila and vice versa going back. I guess I was just too excited about this trip that I didn’t pay attention to all the details since I haven’t been back home for 4 years.

We saw Taiwan by all the en route driving we. Took to get to the hotel. We saw that their salons are all glass made. They also have advanced technology. They are nice to tourist.

The moral of the story was. First of all, Double check the flight details, make necessary calls to the airline and ask if they have a hotel set up for you if you have a long layover. I am not sure if all airlines do this complimentary thing. Second of all, make sure you know all the layovers so you will not be shocked and you’ll know if it was gonna be a tiring trip. And if the ticket are cheap check what is the catch. But if you are up to an adventure. Book it!

Learn from my mistakes. Be an educated traveler. Overall, it was still an experience. It was an adventure for us. My daughter was fine the whole time she was just sleeping. My little jet setter.

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Casual Friday

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I got new pieces from Forever21 and wanted to wear them right away. It matches the party cloudy weather today. It goes like this…. It is perfect if you’ll go to the mall, movie date or just by getting some coffee from your favorite coffee shop.

Cardigan, sandals and shades from Forever 21

shorts from NY and Company

Top from HM

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Dress for Picture Day

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I picked this pastel colored dress fro Adi for her picture day. This is a very nice spring outfit and goes with a sandals.

Looks very nice for a young girl, can also be a church outfit.

Dress from Gap

Sandals from Target

Head Band from HM

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