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4 Easy and Healthy Summer Recipes for Kids.

For kids, summer means having adventures outdoors but quarantine restrictions have put a pause to that. Parents have to get extra creative in ensuring their children still have fun and lead healthy lifestyles even if they’re mostly indoors. Ajinomoto Philippines Corporation is helping parents this summer by sharing creative, affordable and delicious, yet easy and nutritious gulay recipes that will add colors and adventure to their kids’ plates at home.

Welcome summer with these easy and healthy recipes for kids!

We understand the challenge parents have in making meals for their kids, especially in encouraging them to eat vegetables,” says Ajinomoto’s Science Communication Executive, Deborah S. Fajarda, RND. “Through these veggie recipes, we want to address this concern and provide creative ways on how parents can make nutritious dishes enjoyable and fun for their kids. We want to show that mealtimes can be both a healthy and adventurous journey for parents and their children.”

Here are 4 easy, affordable, healthy, and fun veggie recipes that Ajinomoto developed for parents to enjoy with their kids at home:

Crispy Fry® Cauliflower Bites.

Crispy Fry® Cauliflower Bites 
Add a satisfying crunch to your kid’s meryenda with the easy-to-make Crispy Fry Cauliflower Bites. This could be an alternative to snacks like chicken nuggets. Cauliflower is high in potassium. Potassium, in right amount together with sodium, helps maintain fluid balance in the body which is important during the hot weather. CRISPY FRY® Breading Mix gives the crunch that kids love, while the SARSAYA® Sweet and Sour sauce offers a tangy flavor to make this snack even more special. Read the full recipe here.

Mini Spinach and Cheese Pizza.

Mini Spinach and Cheese Pizza
Make pizza healthier with this variant that uses spinach. Spinach is rich in calcium, iron, and vitamin A, which help in strong bone and muscle development, maintaining good eye sight, healthy red blood cells and strong immune system for growing boys and girls. This recipe uses PORKSAVOR® All-in-One Seasoning Mix, which adds a meaty taste that children will enjoy. They can also join in preparing the pizza by adding the toppings all over the dough. Copy the recipe here.

Mixed Veggie Kiddie Patties.

Mixed Veggie Kiddie Patties
These patties can be enjoyed as an ulam or as a snack between hamburger buns. These are made from chicken breast, which contains more lean protein and less saturated fat and cholesterol. The ingredients also include cucumber, broccoli florets, and bell pepper, which are also filled with important nutrients. Not only is it healthy, but also simple. You can make this in 4 easy steps. Make the patties crunchier with the CRISPY FRY® Seasoned Crumbs. See the recipe here.

Fun Camote and Carrot Fries.

Fun Camote and Carrot Fries
Squeeze in that extra beta carotene into your kid’s meals by turning carrot sticks into “fun” fries. This bright and naturally sweet veggie is a great way to entice picky eaters. To make it more appealing, you can also mix it up with sweet potatoes or camote. Here’s a fun fact too! Did you know that camote, or sweet potato, is rich in potassium, vitamin C, vitamin A, and fiber to keep bodies healthy. Adding AJI-GINISA® Flavor Seasoning Mix will also bring a meaty stir-fry deliciousness that will elevate this snack. This Fun Camote and Carrot Fries only takes 15 minutes to cook, so kids have something to eat right away when feeling hungry. You may also opt to use an air fryer to lessen fat content. Follow the recipe here.

With these recipes, Fajarda also reminds parents to know the recommended amount of vegetables needed by their children to ensure a balanced diet. For ages 3 to 5, 1/2 cup is ideal, 3/4 cup for ages 6 to 9, and 3/4 to 1 cup for ages 10 to 12.

These recipes are clever and fun ways of adding vegetables to kids’ daily menu---and making them can even help parents encourage healthy routines and strengthen their bonds with their young ones. Involving our children into meal planning and cooking, such as reading recipes and learning about veggies can likewise help them know about proper nutrition in a fun and tasty way,” says Fajarda.

These healthy and creative recipes are part of Ajinomoto’s Eat Well, Live Well commitment. Ajinomoto has dedicated itself to developing ideas and creating products and services that aim to improve the wellness of Filipino households.

For more creative and nutritious recipes, visit


Party Foods That Don't Need Many Ingredients

Parties take a lot of work! 
Fortunately, none of that has to be wasted on prepping food if you do it correctly. The following four recipes are fun but straightforward dishes that can liven up any party and keep people feeling satisfied.

Photo credit: Devour Dinner

Cream Cheese Fruit Treats
Thinly slice a baguette or another kind of firm bread. Mix sixteen ounces of cream cheese and half of a teaspoon of vanilla, with half of a tablespoon of sugar. Spread mixture a quarter of an inch thick over bread: rinse and dry berries of your choice. You can slice these to make them more visually attractive, but if you don't have the time to pull out a cutting board, you can use smaller berries like blueberries and raspberries. Serve as is, with a bottle of honey nearby if anyone wants to drizzle some on top.

If you want to make the presentation for this more beautiful, you can cut fruits like strawberries into heart or star shapes and create good color schemes by mixing and matching fruit.

Photo credit: Food52

Blue Cheese Potato Chips
Another take on nachos is a fun and exciting way to make a large tray of food that can be easily tossed together. Preheat your oven to 350, and lay tinfoil down onto a cookie sheet. Spread out a bag or two of plain potato chips. On top of this, drop clusters of blue cheese, bacon, and whatever seasonings you'd like. You can give these a touch of sweet and savory by drizzling with bacon jam as well. Bake for ten minutes until the cheese is soft and fragrant. Top with thinly sliced green onion and whichever other flavors you'd like to include. Serve immediately with lots of napkins!

The quarantine famous Korean Cream Cheese Garlic Bread.

Pull-Apart Bread
This recipe is simple and to the point so that you can get out of the kitchen and into the party! Take a round loaf of bread, like sourdough, and make a cross-hatched pattern of cuts on the top. Cut down into the bread, leaving about half an inch from the bottom uncut. Slice frozen butter and cheddar and shove these icy slivers into the cuts on the bread. Follow by putting in seasonings like garlic, oregano, or rosemary. Bake for ten to fifteen minutes at 350 degrees, and serve!

Photo credit: Dinner at the Zoo.

Broiled Open Face S’Mores
A three-ingredient recipe by nature, broiled s'mores give you the chance to make a toasty gooey chocolate treat for the whole party without having to spend more than five dollars. Lay tin foil down on a cookie sheet, and then set squares of graham cookie crackers down. On top of that, put a segment or two of chocolate, and then top with a giant marshmallow.

Set your broiler to low, and place this on a medium-high rack in your oven. Broil for three to five minutes, checking on them frequently until they reach a toasty golden color. Serve on a large tray immediately! The most vital part of a party is that you have fun and make some memories. Why are waste hours cooking when you could be enjoying the people around you?


PCPPI to provide free vaccines to all its employees joins the private sector in Dose of Hope initiative.

Pepsi-Cola Products Philippines Inc. (PCPPI),—the exclusive manufacturer of PepsiCo beverages in the country—announced today that it will provide free COVID-19 vaccines to all its employees who will voluntarily receive them. The company purchased the vaccines as part of the tripartite agreement between the private sector, the government and vaccine manufacturers.

Photo credit: PCPPI Facebook page

“Providing free vaccines is essential to a healthy and safe working environment at PCPPI. The inoculation will be voluntary but we highly encourage everyone to be vaccinated. This is to show gratitude to our employees who have all worked hard during the pandemic,” said President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Frederick D. Ong.

The vaccination program is part of “Dose of Hope” initiative led by Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion. The program already purchased 17 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines from AstraZeneca. Set delivery date of vaccines for the company will be on the 3rd quarter of this year.

“PCPPI participated in the ‘Dose of Hope’ initiative for faster vaccine rollout. This is our way of supporting the private sector’s goal of reviving the economy and the government’s efforts in controlling COVID,” Ong added. PCPPI also held a virtual learning session on COVID-19 Vaccination for its employees. Dr. Iris Radev, MD from Ocean Medical Clinic in British Columbia, Canada, facilitated the online event. With close to 300 attendees, the session aimed to encourage vaccination. "Our employees need to know the right information on COVID-19 vaccines. The benefits of inoculation definitely outweighs the risks and fears we have," added Vibes Cheong, Senior Vice President for Human Resources and Corporate Affairs.

PPCPI manufactures and sells well-known PepsiCo beverages brands such as Pepsi-Cola, Mountain Dew, 7-Up, Mirinda, Mug, Gatorade, Aquafina, Premier, Sting, Tropicana and Lipton.


Prudential Corporation Asia and SuperM launch new “We DO” Music Video

Pru Life UK’s regional headquarters, Prudential Corporation Asia (PCA) and the Korean pop (K-pop) super group SuperM have launched a new “We DO” music video (MV) to encourage people to stay well and healthy, and have fun doing it. PCA announced earlier this year its collaboration with SuperM to launch the “We Do Well Together” campaign aimed at promoting new and engaging ways of maintaining physical and mental health.

The launch of the “We DO” song will be followed by PCA’s “We DO Dance” initiatives across Asia. This is a series of health and wellness initiatives designed to offer people a fresh perspective and approach to manage their health and wellness, especially amid the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak.

Super M, the "Avengers of K-pop".

In the Philippines, Pru Life UK is set to launch the #WeDoDanceChallengePH from April 26 to June 25 via the social platform Tiktok, inviting Filipinos to create and upload their dance covers of the song “We DO”, accompanied by a short caption describing how dancing helps them keep fit.

Participants will get a chance to be recognized in the roster of the Top 100 videos and win a prize in the weekly electronic raffle draw – these include exclusive SuperM x Pru Life UK merchandise, as well as tickets to a regionwide SuperM virtual concert.

“In line with our long-standing commitment to help people protect their health and wellbeing, the launch of our ‘We DO Dance’ series aims to create a fun and exciting way to engage Filipinos to dance and be active to get the most out of life,” shares Allan Tumbaga, Pru Life UK SVP & Chief Customer Marketing Officer.

We Do Well Together!

PCA was the first regional life insurer to collaborate with a renowned Korean pop group. In January, PCA announced to hold a series of events with SuperM to motivate people to lead healthier lives and achieve better wellness in 11 markets in Asia, including the Philippines, Cambodia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Taiwan, Thailand, Singapore and Vietnam.

Find out more about the “We DO Dance” initiatives on Pru Life UK’s website, and/or download Pulse app to be part of the “Dance For Wellness” community.

Watch the “We DO” music video here:


#StrongerNow Than Yesterday: Inspiring Stories of Great Hair Days.

There is no denying that hair has always been a significant symbol for women. As they say, “Hair is your crowning glory” and it’s not just because hair sits right on top of your head. Hair can contribute to a woman’s identity and can affect how confident they feel. While hair can look different from day to day, in moments they need to feel most empowered, a great hair day might just be the boost that they need.

Great hair days can transform ordinary moments into moments of empowerment that some can only dare to dream of. Here are some great hair day stories from local stars that many Filipinas can relate to and use as their inspiration.

Photo credit: Pinky Webb on Instagram.

Pinky Webb finally opens up on her recent iconic hair flip moment. “Looking back as I faced a difficult situation, feeling the tension and pressure about to get to me, I chose to remain calm and unintentionally did, well, a hair flip. Luckily, I chose to wear my hair down that day. Even better, I felt empowered with my Salontastic hair!”

Photo credit: Anne Curtis Smith on Instagram.

“No matter the length, style and colour of my hair Pantene shampoo and conditioner have made my hair look amazing, making me feel empowered. At the moment I’m loving the Pantene salon inspired conditioners!” Whether it be on stage as a host or performer, on screen as an actor or just at home as a mum and wife, Anne Curtis shares that Pantene has made her feel empowered through making her hair look amazing.

Photo credit: Gabbi Garcia on Instagram.

With so many tasks at hand from conceptualization to shooting vlogs, Gabbi Garcia talks about how challenging and fulfilling it is when she works on her content. “I feel more in control and empowered. Just like how Pantene empowers me to be more confident with my crowning glory, that even if I give less effort to my hair, it always stays Salontastic! Because with Salontastic hair, I feel empowered to own those challenging moments.”

Photo credit: Kylie Versoza on Instagram.

“Looking back at my my achievements takes me to a place of gratitude.” Kylie Verzosa shares, as she flashes back to memorable moments, such as when she represented the PH and won the Miss International crown, became a mental health advocate, and when Mental Health Matters — her own mental health organization was recognized by international organisations. “It was always a dream and accomplishment of mine. I feel more confident that even If I give less effort to my hair, it always stays to be Salontastic!’

Photo credit: Sofia Andres on Instagram.

“I think the most challenging part of being a mother is to embody the values we want to impart our children. It is not enough to teach or tell them what is right but we also have to show them that we practice what we teach them. Truly motherhood changes your ways, the way you see things and even how you think…” Sofia Andres shares how some parenting moments have provided her the empowerment she never realized she would have found as a mom. “If you are a mom and you are afraid too, just be the woman you want you children to be. In the little things like when our children play with our hair, we can stay confident that it will always stay Salontastic. Because with Salontastic hair, I feel empowered to own those moments.”

What’s their secret? For #StrongerNow defining hair moments, the Pantene Long Hair Solutions with Pro-Vitamin Formula & Japanese Rice Oil Essence Shampoo has your hair covered. It helps your hair grow longer with Tocotrienol—a super Vitamin E, which has 50X anti-damaging benefits, while Japanese Rice Oil Essence fortifies the outside. This ultimately repairs damaged hair and keeps it protected from external factors, allowing the hair to grow longer, stronger, and beautifully smoother.

To cap it all off, strengthen your hair against breakage with the Pantene Hair Fall Control Miracle Conditioner for 98% less hair fall. This smoothens 3 months’ worth of damage in just 3 minutes with the Pro-V formula. It also nourishes hair for added strength and shine so you can be #Salontastic, even without going to the salon.

With so many stories of inspiration and empowerment, who knew that hair actually contributes to women’s confidence? If you’ve been reluctant to change your hair routine, it’s high time to embrace the change and #PushMoLong just in time for Women’s National Month. Take on the challenge of being #StrongerNow than ever before and look forward to great hair days with Pantene.

Pantene allows your hair to be at its best condition yet so you’re able to experience empowering, great hair days.

Start your Pantene #StrongerNow journey now by checking out through the P&G Shopee Mall store.


6 Factors to Take into Consideration When Buying a Home.

Buying a home is an exciting experience for anyone and is a big step to take in your life. However, the process isn’t as easy as it may seem. There are a lot of things to think about so that you can find a property that you truly love and enjoy living in.

If you’re thinking of getting started but not quite sure what direction to go in. Keep on reading! We are going to be discussing six factors to take into consideration when buying a home.

Let’s get started!

The current market
The real estate market is still prone to changes, so before you think about buying a home, it’s a good idea to look at the current prices and assess your financial situation. If the market has suddenly risen, it might be worth waiting a while until things are more affordable. Alternatively, if you need a home ASAP, you need to make sure that you can afford the initial deposit and repayments.

So Ji Sub in Terius Behind Me (2019).

Nearby facilities
Certainly, one of the most important factors to consider when buying a home is what facilities and amenities are available in that current location. Here are a few things you may want to look into:
  • Schools 
  • Emergency Services 
  • Parks/Play Areas
  • Restaurants, Cafes, Grocery Stores
  • Public Transport
By assessing what you want in a neighborhood, you can then start narrowing down your different options. Check out these homes for sale Callaway FL to get started!

Looks familiar?
Goblin, 2016.

Size and layout
The size and layout of a home play a big part in whether or not it is right for you, so you want to spend time looking at different house types and seeing what is practical for you and your family. From apartments, bungalows, condos, townhouses, and mansions. Each come with their own unique style.

Neighborhood crime rates
There are always going to be good neighborhoods and bad neighborhoods, so before purchasing a home, you want to check its crime rate first. An app like AreaVibes is excellent, as it offers a liveability score based on different factors. Another good choice is Neighborhood Scout, which allows you to compare neighborhoods based on their individual crime rates.

This is how apartments in Seoul look like.

Hidden Costs
Before you purchase a home, you want to make sure that it is in good condition and free from hazards. One hidden expense that you will have to budget for is a pest and building inspection to ensure there are no structural issues. It may seem irritating at first, but it is crucial. Otherwise, you may be stuck with expensive renovation costs in the future. Some other hidden fees you need to think about include:
Future potential
Finally, the last factor you need to consider when buying a home is what you are going to do with it in the future. By thinking about what it can be worth later on, you may be able to turn it into a great investment opportunity. That being said, choosing to live in it for the rest of your life is ok too!


4 Tips for Throwing a Kid-Friendly Halloween Party.

While Christmas stands front and center as a favorite holiday for kids, Halloween doesn’t shy away from sharing that spotlight. With its promise of delicious candy and incredible costumes, the holiday brings plenty of fun opportunities to the table.

This fact becomes even more profound when you are tasked with throwing a kid-friendly Halloween party. The pressure to plan a perfect evening is so palpable that you can practically taste it. But it isn’t nearly as delicious as any popular Halloween candy.

To help you rise to the occasion and plan a stellar get-together for your child and their friends, here are 4 tips for throwing a Halloween party for kids.

Girls Generation Yuri and EXO Xiumin in SMTown Wonderland 2018,
SM Entertainment's annual Halloween party.

1. Go Big on Invites
No matter what type of event you’re planning, formal invitations stand out as an essential part of the process. This also holds true for Halloween parties, even if you are organizing them for kids. In fact, they are even more prominent when your guests look at the event as the highlight of the season.

By picking fun, warm, and welcoming designs for these invites, you can fulfill the recipients’ expectations without any issues. As long as you maintain a joyful vibe through your chosen design, you can achieve your goal of making the party a memorable event for your child and their friends.

SHINee in 2014, with Jonghyun dressed up as a Titan.

2. Pay Attention to Costumes
When you throw a Halloween party for kids, you need to show you are serious about the event and not brush it off as a silly tradition. The best way to achieve this feat is by finding womens and mens costumes for Halloween to wear during the party.

Regardless of whether you dress up as a space princess or a superhero, this small step can ensure plenty of joy for all your little guests. You can also go a step beyond to match your costume with your child, which can become a Halloween tradition and elevate their joy to no end.

Chanyeol in his Iron Man costume.

3. Set Up Games and Activities
In order to make the party a fun event, make sure to plan some games and activities that can keep your guests busy. This can range from a Halloween pinata to candy Jenga. If your child is excited by the idea of winning prizes, you can tie these games to some sort of reward.

You can also set up a showing of popular movies for kids, ensuring that their time at the party stays free of boredom. It all depends on what your child wants to do. But the more activities you have at the party, the more fun it is for the participants.

Onew as Colonel Sanders.

4. Plan a Big Party Menu
If there’s one thing that kids love more than dressing up, it is eating delicious food that stands apart from home cooking. From burgers to pizza, you can plan a big menu for your party to treat your guests to an enthralling Halloween evening. While the dishes don’t have to be fancy, you need to make sure that they are appetizing for everyone.

To make sure that you aren’t going against any dietary restrictions, you can get in touch with other parents before finalizing your menu. This helps you stay away from uncomfortable and unsafe situations while also keeping your young guests’ wellbeing in mind.

Final Thoughts
Throw in a few decorations, and you can make sure that the party becomes a highly excitable affair for your child and their friends. As a result, you can easily pull off the otherwise complicated task of throwing a memorable yet kid-friendly Halloween party.


5 Ways to Live a Sustainable Life.

Our everyday lives and our choices are critical to the environment, climate change, and future generations. For example, what we eat, drink, clothing, and the number of kids we choose to have has a significant effect on the environment.

Mostly, the conscious and deliberate effort you make now about how to shop, limit water usage, and travel is a matter of life to every living thing on the planet, including animals and plants. It is all about living sustainably, and here is how.

Recycling bins in South Korea.
Yoo Na in Prime Minister and I (2013).

1. Reuse and Recycle More Than Ever Before
While the current consumerism culture is all about shopping, and more shopping, you can break the cycle by reducing, reusing, and recycling most stuff you use. Again everything we purchase has a substantial environmental footprint. And so, before you make that purchase, ask yourself whether it is necessary.

Think of those massive, heavily advertised baby products that take years to decompose. Then, of course, choose only eco-friendly baby products, most of which you can reuse and recycle.

Most environmentally-conscious companies and individuals are now boycotting any product that endangers the soil or even wildlife, and it would be good to take the cue. The good news is that you do not even have to buy some of these products. Instead, you can DIY some of the stuff you use at home.

2. Use Less Energy to Reduce Carbon Emissions
Carbon emissions have a destructive effect on the environment, and it takes a conscious and strong mind to break the pattern. So how do you do it? To start, be sure to turn off appliances when not in use. Minimize their use, and turn down all heating as much as you can.

Generally, keeping your home green at every turn, including maintaining your home and car, improves energy use and efficiency. Once you opt for those energy-saving lights, you will be a step ahead in reducing the harm. And lastly, the more outdoors you get, the more your home becomes energy efficient too.
Jung Hae in for Volvo Korea.

3. Changing Your Driving Habits
Even though driving has become essential in the modern world, you can limit your trips or use a more friendly means of transport to reduce the carbon footprint. Let’s say, whenever possible, walk or bike. These car-free days are hugely beneficial to your budget, health, and environment.

There are several other ways to reduce your car use even when you have to travel longer distances. Those mass transit services such as bus or train systems available in your location are a perfect option. You can even opt for carpool or vanpool services, and that will be way better than if you were to use your car daily.

4. Check the Product Certification Before You Buy 
Now, most echo products coming from all corners of the globe have fair-trade certification. So, whenever you pick your coffee, tea, or fruit, check if the product has that label. It is an indication that it has been produced using sustainable farming methods.

But doing so also means doing loads of good, not just to the environment but to the local farmers, knowing that they have had the proper compensation for their sweat. While buying organic products may be a bit costlier, the accompanying benefits surpass your money concerns.

Organic means the farms, water, and final products are free from those harmful pesticides. Everything you consume is now clean, and you do not have to worry about its negative impact on your health.

One of the many tote bags worn by Gong Hyo Jin in The Master's Sun (2013).

5. Go as Plastic-Free as You Can
Plastic is virtually everywhere, and eliminating it hasn’t been so easy. Massive amounts of it have found a home on the world’s water mass, causing massive harm to aquatic life. Still, you can make a personal effort to keep off plastics and eventually cut off the waste with reusable shopping bags and water bottles.

You can always ditch any product wrapped with plastic, and if possible, purchase unwrapped goods at your local grocery store. While you may think your action is insignificant, it just takes your single action to change the world and save future generations.

Living a sustainable life will require some lifestyle adjustments on your part. These might be challenging to adapt initially, but once you get used to them, life becomes even more fulfilling. If you haven’t yet joined the movement, why not start today to enjoy sustainability.