Instagramming Oregon and California Trip

I don’t blog that heavily anymore. Most of our photos are now posted in Instagram so I guess you can now call me an IG blogger. ๐Ÿ™‚ However, having said that, I know that there are people who still don’t have Instagram (paging Mom). So with that, I try to use hashtag on each vacation we do so that I can collate them, turn into a blog post and share the link… Well, we recently traveled to Oregon to watch the total solar eclipse and then did a side trip to Yosemite, Sequoia and then a day trip to San Francisco. Here are some of the photos… ๐Ÿ™‚ It may take a while for this post to unfold as I typically create a photobook first (as I did with previous vacations). So please bear with me. ๐Ÿ™‚ Much love, Joyce


The mark I leave behind for my child isn’t going to be based on the fancy shoes and clothes he puts on or the material things we purchase for him but in the simplicity and quality of the moments we spend together as mother and child while enjoying the beauty of nature and of each other’s company. Where: Lake Nokomis 50th Street Beach Parking: Street Parking (around the lake) Season: Spring, sunset (May 2017) What about you? How do you show your love for your child / children? What are the things they love to do with you? Enjoy the weekend. It’s going to be glorious! Much love, Joyce

Instagramming Siargao

Beautiful photos of Siargao

Instagramming Kauai

I mentioned in a Facebook post that I will unplug for the rest of October and do a social media cleanse on both FB and Twitter. I didn’t mention as to why because I wasn’t feeling too verbose at that time. The timing was just right as my feeds, while I had participated in discussions at times, were very toxic, filled with enmity, hate and judgments and not healthy anymore. Well, nothing is absolutely wrong from our end. ๐Ÿ™‚ We are, as a matter of fact in Kauai, mostly unplugged to the world but have been updating those who are following me just through Instagram. I now feel refreshed and calm as we are immersing ourselves in the tremendous beauty of this island and see it from a different perspective the second time around. I also have the best company in the world while enjoying this. Check out some of the photos I have shared (to those who aren’t in IG). ๐Ÿ™‚ I may go back to social media I mentioned above by mid-November or from time to time as I do want to remain updated with what’s happening with my parents, sisters, niece and some very close friends. Aloha […]

Best Places in Twin Cities to Take Fall Portraits

Best non-crowded places to take Fall / Autumn portraits

Hiking Westwood Nature Center

I mentioned Westwood Nature Center in one of my posts that it’s one of our favorite places to hike in the Twin Cities and with that, I don’t want it to be popular. This is such a beautiful, tranquil place and my hope is for it to remain that way. You know how some crowds can trash and ruin things? Anyway, we got the chance to hike it one glorious, summer afternoon and here are some of the photos from it. What about you? What are your favorite places to hike? How do you help in keeping your parks clean and orderly? Much love, Joyce

Paddling the Chain of Lakes

(All photos were taken using Google Nexus 6P) We have been itching to canoe for weeks now but my husband’s truck was out of service. The minute we got his new vehicle, we told ourselves that we will paddle. One of our friends suggested the Chain of Lakes right in the heart of Minneapolis and about 5 miles from our home and while I have ran around those lakes so many times, our little family have never been on those waters. ๐Ÿ˜‰ ๐Ÿ˜‰ How to Get There: If you aren’t familiar with the area, you can always start at Calhoun Beach House located in the northeast corner of Lake Calhoun (rentals are available there, too). However, we started on the south side where the views of the skyline are spectacular. ๐Ÿ™‚ (Photo and map of our starting point) Our Wonderful Experience – What to Expect The lake was so calm and almost like glass that day that I initially felt very disoriented but once we got our bearing and started moving it was very smooth paddling from that point on. Lake Calhoun wasn’t very busy until we reached the boat house and the waterway between the lakes. There we encountered […]

A Paw Patrol Birthday Celebration

Our not-so-little one and our family would like to thank each and everyone of you who made his 4th birthday celebration so memorable for us. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you so much! Here are some of the photos from the celebration! Oh yeah, he loves hockey, so we ordered a cake that’s a combination of hockey and paw patrol, too (that was his pick). ๐Ÿ˜€ We hope you had fun. Until next year! ๐Ÿ™‚ Much love, The Z family *ย Disclaimer: Please note that ourย website contains ads and sometimes affiliate links wherein I earn a tiny commission. It's our way of recouping the cost of keeping the website alive. Thanks for the support.ย 

Happy 4th Birthday!

I don’t have a fancy narrative to share. I am just like most mothers who is learning the ropes of raising a child as I go. Oftentimes, the discoveries were even about myself and the realizations that I still have a lot to work on. While awfully fast, we savored and cherished each and every moment with our wonderful child. He is now 4 years old — neither a baby nor a toddler anymore but a little boy who is capable of articulating what’s on his mind and heart. Strong, smart, kind, a little cautious, active, very expressive, creative and carries his heart on his sleeve… qualities that are very unique to him that we so dearly love. My mother told me once that we are still on the easiest part of raising you and I believe her. We just hope and pray that we will be able to continue raising him in such a way that he will be a blessing to others. We are grateful with multitude of people who are helping us do this because we couldn’t have done this without them (we hope you know who you all are). Thank you so much. Happy 4th birthday […]

Our 2016 Minneapolis Urban Farm

Last year was the first time we built, planted our urban garden, have yielded and learned a lot from it. We had an abundance of produce such as zucchini, cucumbers, (millions of) tomatoes, basil, collard greens, kale, green onions, pumpkin, chives and so much more. One of the biggest mistakes we had was overcrowding plus we also left it for 2 weeks almost unattended as we traveled to the Philippines causing most of the plants to be tangled up by the time we got back. And due to those reasons, the string beans, peppers, cauliflowers, spinach, bokchoy didn’t thrive well. This year we decided to give the plants some breathing room but I think our compost is giving so much nutrients to the plants. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Spring was very warm so we did start early however there was one night when frost came. We already lost some of the peas from that. What remains include: broccoli, various peas (those that made it), beans, edamame, collard greens, kale, chives & green onions (just regrow from last year), tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, mojito mint, basil, onions, carrots, cantaloupe and acorn squash. Some people asked us if we start from seeds or we buy seedling. […]