How to avoid posting anything too emotional online

Finish writing, take a deep breath and go and do something else.

Then come back and see if the post is really worth sharing.

I have been reminding myself that everything I post online, stays online. Since I am a very emotional person, I tend to update my FB stats or write a blog post about exactly how angry I am or how frustrated I am or how happy I am. Sometimes I post something too personal. Sometimes, I post something too shallow. I know it can get annoying when we over-share. So lately, I have been exercising a lot of self control in my life online. If I really need to vent, I find a friend I can talk to.

My pregnancies have always been packed with a lot of hormones but compared to my first, the latest one was more subtle when it came to over-sharing online. I am proud to say that I did manage to exercise some self control. Yippeheyhey! Need to be an example to these kiddos.

Aria and Marcus hanging out

Aria and Marcus Hanging out


Here we go again- Trying to get a grip on time management

If having one kid was a challenge, wait till you have two kids!

I just gave birth (a week ahead of schedule) a month ago and our life is now a daily battle for normalcy… well at least my life is. I am so thankful my mom is here or I wouldn’t be able to bathe or give my daughter a bath, I wouldn’t be able to eat, or feed my daughter, and my house would become some sort of version of the smokey mountains. Right now, our little Mr Marcus – the new addition to the family, is the boss.

mama and marcus

me and the new boss

I am once again reminded about how much of a superwoman all the mothers are out there who raise their kids. A friend of mine recently gave birth by CS for the 5th time. They are not rich and they don’t have help. She does everything when she’s at home for the kids,and also works at a call center. Taking care of kids while recovering from a CS operation isn’t that easy. It was an easy recovery for me when I gave birth to Aria but the second time around, I cried because I couldn’t endure the pain on the third day. So I can’t imagine how it  must feel the 5th time around. That friend of mine is my hero of CS recoveries.

As with all new babies, the first month is always challenging. Sleeping is a challenge. Getting other things not related to baby done is a challenge. I’m always hungry. My boobs are sore. I feel sorry for Aria because I don’t get to spend enough time with her. Our house is a mess. I am a mess.

Oh well, I guess it all boils down to time management is what the chubby hubby says…though he immediately changed his mind once he volunteered to take care of both kids and let me sleep that one afternoon… and he finally admits that we have found ourselves (which means he will be really involved with taking care of the kids) quite a challenge in this phase of raising our family.

Good luck to us!

Breakfast (and Dessert) at Roger’s Diner

I have passed by Roger’s Diner numerous times on our way back home from West bay Doha. Every time we do, I tell the Chubby hubby that we should go and try out that place.  Finally, after the Ramadhan and Eid, we got the chance to go on a weekend to try out their breakfast.

Roger's Diner (9 of 13)

The place was still empty which was a common thing on an early morning weekend. I feel like the people here are night people since restaurants and malls are so full when they are almost closed.

The parking space outside Roger's Diner on a weekend

The parking space outside the diner on a weekend

Free Valet parking at Roger's Diner

Free Valet parking so that you don’t have to walk far. This was pretty convenient in the hot weather

The interiors boasted of a 50’s aviation vibe. Makes you want to order a malt beverage and a cheeseburger.

Interiors of Roger's Diner

The 50’s Interiors vibe

Interiors at Roger's Diner

Looks like the carcass of an old wing of a plane

We were there for breakfast so we ordered some breakfast from the seasonal promotion menu which included a main meal and fresh juice or coffee/tea. I opted for the Southwestern Omelet with watermelon juice and the chubby hubby ordered the Cajun Omelet and lemon mint juice.

Seasonal Promotion from Roger's Diner

Seasonal Promotion menu

Our Lemon Mint and Watermelon juice from Roger's Diner

Our Lemon Mint and Watermelon juice that came along with our combo

Southwest Omelet Breakfast combo from Roger's Diner

My Southwest Omelet Breakfast combo

We wanted to order something from the kid’s menu for Aria but they only served items from the breakfast menu at that hour. However a little later, the staff came back to us and told us that we could order something for Aria and the chef will make it even if it’s too early. We ordered a baked Chicken Macaroni for her.

Happy at Roger's Diner


Wearing shades at Roger's Diner

Their too school for school pose

Chubby Hubby feeding Aria some of her Baked Chicken Macaroni from Roger's Diner

Chubby Hubby feeding Aria some of her Baked Chicken Macaroni and eating some of it himself

The food was pretty good. Not that outstanding but pretty good. My omelette was really tasty with the bacon. But I guess I wanted bigger portions. Maybe the portions would have been bigger if we ordered from the regular breakfast menu. They had some really awesome looking waffles I wanted to try. But I had to leave some place in my belly for dessert! The Chubby hubby enjoyed Aria’s order. He said it was exactly how he wanted his pasta. Not too creamy and not too cheesy.

We ordered the Ice cream mud pie for dessert and although I loved it, it would have been sooo much better if the crust were a little bit more thicker.

A slice of an ice cream mud pie cake from Roger's Diner

A slice of an ice cream mud pie cake

Free ice cream from Roger's Diner (1 of 1)

The best part for Aria was free ice cream! How nice it is to be a little girl…

Roger’s Diner
C Ring Rd, Doha, Qatar
p: +974 4455 2333

My new favorite sushi restaurant- Neo Restaurant

Two friends were discussing eating sushi over Facebook the other day and I invited myself (and chubby hubby and Aria) to their date. They couldn’t say no since the post was public and it would be quite embarrassing to decline my invitation  to myself to join them. hahaha Although I did really ask if it was okay, and they reassured me that it was fine. I hope my fb friends wont feel too threatened about this habit of mine. I really don’t mind if you say No.

I always try to find ways to eat sushi and thought this was a good idea to find something new. One of my friends said that this place was the best in Doha. When we got there and I tried out their sushi, i found out that she really wasn’t kidding.

Neo restaurant is located along Salwa Road in Souq Najd which is right next to Jarir Bookstore. They have been awarded the best Japanese restaurant in Doha by Time Out in 2013. What is great about the place is the accessibility and the wonderful interiors.

Neo Restaurant in Salwa Road

Outside the restaurant

the Lobby of Neo Restaurant in Salwa Road

Restaurant Lobby

It is always advisable to call and get reservations. When we got there they were fully booked for the evening, but since we were early and some of the other bookings were a little later, and probably because our friends were VERY FREQUENT guests, we were given a table.

Neo Restaurant in Salwa Road

Ordering our food

Sleeping inside Neo Restaurant in Salwa Road

Aria was asleep when we got in.

They had an Eat-all-you-can option that evening for QAR 150 and I went for it without blinking twice. They served their best selling maki and ebi for that option and I thought I would be able to eat another round. I ordered green tea to warm my tummy as I had my sushi- thinking it would help me eat more. I forgot about the baby in there who is taking up a big chunk of space. So I didn’t get to eat another round and just ordered a second helping of their maki with mango.

Table setting at Neo Restaurant in Salwa Road

My table setting

Tea at Neo Restaurant in Salwa Road

Green Tea with my sushi

neo restaurant (9 of 12)

Chubby hubby’s mojito

We also ordered a shrimp tempura which came before the main platter.

Shrimp Tempura at Neo Restaurant in Salwa Road

What was left of our shrimp tempura

neo restaurant (10 of 12)

Our initial EAT ALL YOU CAN platter. My favorite was the maki with mango slice skin which is the bright yellow roll at the bottom left

They also served a some truffles for dessert. There wasn’t place in everyone else’s tummy so I ate most of it.

neo restaurant (12 of 12)

Belgian chocolate and Oreo Truffles

The food was really good and fresh. I love that their Eat all you can option included their best sellers and not just their plain makis and ebis. I wished they had some sashimi in there so that I could have tried it. Maybe next time… definitely next time.

Neo Restaurant
Salwa Road, Souq Najd
Doha Qatar
t: +974 44322539 / 44322508
f: +974 40297041

Checking out the Qatar Foundation Student Center and an Impromptu Maternity Shoot

I feel fat. I feel like a house. Everytime I feel this way, I want to eat a big fat steak. And I feel this way all the time.

But ofcourse, now is not the time to starve myself to lose weight. I am now 30 weeks and my OB advised me that I will be scheduled to give birth by Caesarian at 37 weeks, just like when I had Aria. I was hoping my baby boy would come by October so that he could celebrate his birthday with me (i find it more economical), but I guess he would be coming along by the last week of September.

There was this recent article about a man who posed for a maternity photoshoot because his wife didn’t want one. It was hilarious and it made me realize that I really want one… Sadly, I know that I will never meet my own expectations about being all glamorous in it so I would rather be behind the camera and not infront of it. I did one for a friend a few years back and she looked great. But she was small and like I said, I am a house. A house that needs a major overhaul.

Aria speaking to mama's tummy at the Qatar Foundation Student Center

Hello baby this is Ate Aria

Aria kissing mama's tummy at the Qatar Foundation Student Center

I love you baby Marcus, Ate Aria

However, as I was glancing through pictures of my pregnancy with Aria that I noticed we didn’t take as much pictures now as we did before. Poor baby boy! We wouldn’t have a well documented birth day when he comes out just like what we did with his sister. And I feel guilty that we took extra preparations for Aria and not for baby number 2.

So I promised myself more pictures and I need to force the chubby hubby to buy me a really nice camera so that I can treat baby boy with the same kind of paparazzi royalty I did with his sister. And that he wouldn’t feel ‘unspecial’ when he grows up and starts looking for his baby pictures. I use to take weekly pictures of Aria when she was born and have pretty much all of her milestones documented.

Anyway, we went to Qatar Foundation Student Center located at the Educational City in Doha before the Eid holidays to check out their clinic (Qatar Foundation employees can get free consultation, treatment and medicine) and I thoroughly enjoyed the Architecture of that place. Actually, the entire Educational City has a lot of wonderful modern architecture waiting to be explored. I wished again I had a better camera. But I forced the chubby hubby to take pictures of me and Aria because there were a lot of perfect settings for a shoot.

Pregnant woman at the Qatar Foundation Student Center

Pregnant woman

Enjoying the spacious halls of the Qatar Foundation Student Center

Enjoying the spacious halls of the Student Center. Makes me want to be a student again

Aria and Mama at the Qatar Foundation Student Center

Aria and Mama

Qatar Foundation Student Center Big Ottomans

Aria on one of those big round ottomans.

I seriously loved that place. And they have this awesome bookstore called Tribe that sells art materials that are hard to find anywhere else. I spent a good amount of time there and Aria just kept pulling stuff off the shelves (much to the staff’s dismay). I didn’t bring my wallet though (because it was empty) and couldn’t buy anything and I really wanted to buy everything… There were plenty of seating areas in different designs where students can study (or pretend to study). They also have sports facilities that Qatar Foundation employees could use. I am looking forward to the GIGANTIC library that they are opening soon. Hopefully by then I would have a driver’s license (and a mini cooper) so that me and the kids can visit during the day. Oh how I love libraries and the smell of books (old and new)!

Turkish Grill at Souq Waqif: Bosphorus Turkish Cuisine and Grill Room

We chanced upon Bosphorus while exploring the alleyways of Souq Waqif during our visit looking for a nice place to eat. The chubby hubby was in the mood for some grilled food so he really wanted to eat Turkish food. Although there were plenty of attractive outdoor seating, it was really too hot and humid to eat outside so we decided to eat inside. They also had a terrace seating on the second floor and it would have been a perfect place to eat if only the weather was more tolerable.

Bosphorus Turkish Cuisine and Grill Room at Souq Waqif

Outside the restaurant

I am not sure if the sign outside really meant that the area was an old prison site. If it were true, that would have been awesome.
Old Prison site outside Bosphorus Turkish Cuisine and Grill Room at Souq Waqif

Seated indoors at Bosphorus Turkish Cuisine and Grill Room at Souq Waqif

Finally seated indoors!

Cooling off inside Bosphorus Turkish Cuisine and Grill Room at Souq Waqif

Aria sweating from the heat outside

Interiors of Bosphorus Turkish Cuisine and Grill Room at Souq Waqif

The only interiors photo I took

I really did not know a thing about Turkish food so I had no idea what to order. I wanted something with tomato sauce though, not necessarily pasta but something with tomatoes. They had some pies that are made hot from the oven so I went for their Kusbasili Kasarli Pide which is a traditional Turkish pie topped with lamb cubes, melted cheese and Turkish sausage. The Chubby Hubby wanted to eat lamb but they didn’t have it available that time so he went for some Tavuk sis which is Grilled chicken breasts (i think). hehehe

They customized drinks according to what you felt like having so I told the waiter that I wanted something with strawberry and lime (I was actually craving for a mojito) and they gave me a really refreshing drink better than what I had in mind!

Mocktail at Bosphorus Turkish Cuisine and Grill Room at Souq Waqif

My specially mixed Fruit drink

Kusbasili Kasarli Pide at Bosphorus Turkish Cuisine and Grill Room at Souq Waqif

My Kusbasili Kasarli Pide

Tavuk Sis at Bosphorus Turkish Cuisine and Grill Room at Souq Waqif

Chubby Hubby’s Tavuk Sis

It was a very good meal overall and we definitely left the place with satisfied grins on our faces.

Outside Bosphorus Turkish Cuisine and Grill Room at Souq Waqif

Happy pregnant woman after her Turkish dinner

Bosphorus Turkish Cuisine and Grill Room
Souq Waqif, Doha, Qatar
t: +97433580062

Exploring Doha: Souq Waqif on a hot summer evening

The more I go around Doha, the more I am reminded of Dubai in the early 90s. Back when I was a kid, there weren’t any big malls and shopping went down to just the necessities. What we did as a family during weekends was walk around. We hated those weekends because it meant we had to wake up early and go to places we really didn’t like. But looking back, I appreciate more the culture we were exposed to during those walks- the markets, the small shops, the nuts and spices in sacks being sold, bargaining with very little common vocabulary and eating with the laborers.

During the recently concluded Eid holidays, chubby hubby (who is determined not to remain chubby forever) had an entire week off which gave us a lot of time to go around the city and explore. However, the lazy bums that we are spent around 70% at home sleeping and lounging around and 30% outside in the heat. I wanted to spend a day on a beach resort somewhere but all hotels were fully booked (and also dang expensive) so we didn’t push that idea through.

One evening, out of the blue, chubby hubby took me to Souq Waqif.

I love everything traditional because it makes me feel like I understand a place or a person more when I am exposed to their traditions. Souq Waqif was true to the Arab culture of trade and architecture. I understand that the place was torn down and rebuilt just recently but I think they did a good job recapturing the old styles that these kind of markets (souqs) represent.

Souq waqif

Goods were stocked outside the stores. If this was Manila, those goods would have been long gone

Souq waqif corridors

Along the corridors/avenues of the Souq with the chubby hubby and Aria fast asleep in her stroller

You can buy fabric, garments, toys, food, traditional goods, hardware, and even live animals here at the Souq. There are a couple of boutique hotels, restaurants and an art center too.

Souq waqif (7)

Turtles on sale.

Souq waqif (6)

And Rabbits too!

Souq waqif Animals and birds for sale

Aria afraid of the animals

We didn’t get to check out the Art Center which was located in the middle part of the market because it was being renovated at the time. However some of the artists were seated outside doing their thing.

Souq waqif, Art Center

Outside the Art Center where local artists did portraits for a fee (ofcourse)

Souq waqif (5)

Bhosphorous restaurant where we had a our Turkish dinner.

Souq waqif (4)

Restaurants of different cuisines were scattered around the souq. You can take your pick.

It was a really really hot evening so we walked in a hurry to see as much as we could. We are already planning to come back when the weather is much cooler and we can enjoy the ambiance of the outdoors more. I feel like there is still so more to see. Hopefully by then I would have better photos because I would have a better camera (paging CHUBBY HUBBY!). For now this hot mama needs to stay away from the outdoors as much as possible and anchor her butt comfortably in air-conditioned areas.