Off the Bookshelf: A Roald Dahl Summer

How did you fare with your summer book list?  We didn’t get to stick to our list but we at least got to finish several new titles.

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We started summer with The Magician’s Nephew, the first book in the Chronicles of Narnia, with the intention of finishing all the seven CS Lewis books by the end of summer. However, halfway through second book The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, the kids saw the movie Charlie and the Chocolate Factory on television. This prompted Jade to re-read the book which she had already finished reading (from cover to cover all by herself! yey!) last February. After that, she read Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator. By happenstance, we found three more Roald Dahl books in the thrift shop near our home. The Magic Finger, Matilda, and The BFG were added to our collection. Then my beautiful BFF Tita Gen bought her two more books – The Witches and James and the Giant Peach. That made seven Roald Dahls!

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Roald Dahl Books In a Nutshell

Most of Roald Dahls’ books are riddled with humorous poems and silly words that make children giggle. Most of his works for children are also told in a child’s point of view which makes it easy for young kids to relate to the story. However, the stories also often contain gruesome events and black humor so it’s best to read this along with your child or at least have a discussion after each chapter. The main characters in his stories are often children of ill circumstances. James, Sophie, and the little boy in The Witches were all orphans with two of them losing their parents in gruesome accidents. Matilda had crooks for parents. Charlie Bucket had his entire family with him but they were destitute.

Notwithstanding the grotesque and macabre aspects of his stories, Dahl leaves his readers with life lessons that even young readers could understand. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory shows them the consequences of being a glutton, a spoiled brat, and a television rat. It also shows how the humble and good-hearted are rewarded. In the BFG, we see how the supposedly weak ones are able to use their wits to stop the giants from eating “human beans”. We also see how the BFG improves his English once given a chance to learn it properly.

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Little Girl’s Two Cents on Roald Dahl

Has Jade read all of them? Sort of. She’s read four of the books and skimmed through the other three so she does know all the stories. Oftentimes, she’d go through one of the books and read the parts she skipped.

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Does she like them? Oh yes! She says Roald Dahl writes really well and tells very funny stories. She didn’t like The Witches though and says she’d “rather forget all about the story and erase it from memory” (Yes, she does talk like that!). Among the seven books, her top three faves are The BFG, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and Matilda. She’s also requesting for copies of The Twits and The Fantastic Mr. Fox. So kind-hearted titas and titos, please keep the two titles in mind for her coming birthday.  🙂  Oh, and we wouldn’t mind getting some EB White books as well.

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In need of a new flat iron for pressing your kids’ uniforms this school year?  Or perhaps, you’re considering getting a new blender, coffeemaker or toaster to make breakfast prep fast and easy?  Now is the BEST TIME to get them ’cause Electrolux is holding a BIG SALE today until Friday!

Get 50% off Electrolux small appliances from May 28 to 30!  The big sale’s happening only at the Electrolux Head Office in Bonifacio Global City so head on over now to grab the best items.  Check out the poster below for more details.

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Why Latex Mattresses Will Benefit Your Kids

Parents often pay more attention to their child’s bed frame and linen than the actual mattress.  This is unfortunate, since a child’s mattress is more important to their health than any other part of their bed. Children sleep longer than adults, and need a decent night’s sleep to regulate their health, memory, attention span, and stress levels. With so much at stake, it is vital that you have the right mattress for your child. For valuable insight into why a latex mattress could be the way to go, read on.

Problems with Non-Latex Crib Mattresses

Many crib non-latex crib mattresses are toxic, and some contain boric acid and antimony (a heavy metal that absorbs into the skin) that is banned in Europe under investigations in leads to SIDS. Most non-latex crib mattresses are made of polyurethane foam, which tends to omit formaldehyde as it breaks down over time, and can have a significant negative impact of developing respiratory systems in babies and children.

Latex Is Good For Your Children’s Health

Latex is perfect for kids, as it conforms to their sleeping patterns. Latex resists fungus, mold, mildew, and other bacteria that may be harmful to your children. It also absorbs little moisture through a natural wool barrier to keep to bed clean.Parents debate whether wool or latex is better for their child’s bedding, since some have claimed to be potential allergens, however latex is the better choice because of the way the materials are cleaned beforehand. If you are concerned about your child’s health, then a buying a latex mattress is the perfect start to keeping them healthy while they sleep. Latex mattresses are also good for infants.  Remember, if you are unsure, you can always consult your doctor or mattress professional. For more information on why latex mattresses are a better choice for your children’s health, Click Here.

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Images from

A Latex Mattress Will Last Longer

Kids grow quickly, and their body at fourteen is drastically different to their body at seven. Latex mattresses are great because they have a history of lasting twenty years. One way of choosing a good latex mattress is to look at your own body, and imagine your child’s body developing that way. They are a great investment, as they will last a long time, and save money in the long run.

As adults, we develop our immune system; however, infants, toddlers, and young children are exposed to chemicals that can be harmful to them. Because of this, it is very important they don’t absorb too much unnecessary chemicals as they sleep. A natural latex mattress is a clean, healthy, safe way for your children to sleep at night.

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“Sleeping Baby Holding Mom Hand” by tungphoto /

What are your thoughts when it comes to mattresses? Do you prefer a particular type or brand? Have you heard any nightmare stories regarding back or neck pain? Share your opinion, advice and personal experiences by commenting in the section below.

DREAMPLAY by DreamWorks: World’s First Edutainment Center

Who wants to learn Kung Fu with Po, to train a dragon like Hiccup, or to do acrobatic stunts like Alex?!  (I do! I do!) I know – and am absolutely positively sure – that my two little ones would LOVE to!  Here’s the best news ever – all our dreams will come to life before the year ends!

On May 22, 2014, Melco Crown Philippines announced a collaboration with DreamWorks Animation to develop the world’s first DreamWorks-inspired “Edutainment” center at City of Dreams Manila. Yup, you heard it right. That’s right HERE in MANILA!

The official announcement of “DreamPlay by DreamWorks” at the City of Dreams was opened by a medley of DreamWorks’ songs performed by the Mandaluyong Children’s Choir. After which,  Mr. Clarence Chung and Mr. James Clark “magically” turned the page of the “enchanted” story book to officially launch the logo as part of the DreamPlay edutainment center.

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Mandaluyong Children’s Choir set the scene with a medley of hit DreamWorks’ songs at the official announcement of “DreamPlay by DreamWorks” at City of Dreams Manila.

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Chairman and President of Melco Crown Philippines Mr. Clarence Chung is joined by Mr. James Clark, Head of Retail Development and Entertainment for Asia Pacific of DreamWorks Animation, in “magically” turning the page of an “enchanted” story book to officially launch the logo as part of the DreamPlay edutainment center at City of Dreams Manila announcement today.

Our collaboration with DreamWorks is a further illustration of our expertise in developing world-class, innovative, and ground-breaking entertainment for leisure seekers both in the Philippines and internationally.  The “DreamPlay” concept delivers an education experience through spontaneous and sensory play that represents an industry first.

– Clarence Chung, Chariman and President, Melco Crown (Philippines) Resorts Corporation –

DREAMPLAY: The World’s First DreamWorks-inspired Edutainment Center

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All kids age 0 – 100 will be delighted to know that they can soon interact directly with DreamWorks characters from their favorite movies including Kung Fu Panda, Madagascar, Shrek, and How To Train Your Dragon.   DreamPlay revolutionizes family entertainment by integrating education and entertainment; hence, the term “Edutainment.” Together with iP2 Entertainment, DreamWorks Animation combined the best elements of DreamWorks library with hands-on activities of an education inspired play-center to create a one-of-a-kind family adventure.

DreamWorks is home to the world’s greatest creative and artistic talents who have created and continue to create great stories and characters that not only entertain but also capture the hearts of kids of all ages.  Soon, we’ll be able to experience the awesome worlds of these characters in an educational way within DreamPlay at City of Dreams Manila.  Featuring the latest digital technologies, interactive environments will enable kids to engage in a wide range of thrilling activities with their favorite characters Po, Shrek, Alex, Hiccup and other DreamWorks characters.  This exciting blend of integrated live and digital play spaces where we can immerse ourselves in the world of DreamWorks Animation will definitely be a favorite family destination.

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Harnessing leading digital technologies, this attraction is going to be unlike anything that currently exists and will undoubtedly become a new type of destination for families, both in the Philippines and across the rapidly growing leisure-destination markets of Asia.

– Paul Kurzawa, Head of Retail Development & Entertainment, DreamWorks Animation –

DreamPlay was developed by DreamWorks Animation in conjunction with their partners from Melco Crown Entertainment and their designers from iP2 Entertainment. Each DreamPlay by DreamWorks experience is being designed exclusively for City of Dreams Manila.

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CITY OF DREAMS: Where Dreams Come to Play

The first DreamPlay by DreamWorks will be part of the City of Dreams Manila destination resort soon to be opened at the gateway of the Entertainment City Manila.  City of Dreams Manila is an integrated casino resort being developed and will be operated by Melco Crown Philippines in alliance with SM Group’s Belle Corporation.  Aside from DreamPlay, it will feature Manila’s first branded Family Entertainment Center and the Fortune Egg, an architecturally-unique dome-like structure expected to become an iconic landmark of the Manila Bay area.

City of Dreams Manila is set to become a premier leisure destination for global entertainment seekers.  Upon opening, its aggregated gaming space will include approximately 365 gaming tables, 1,680 slot machines, and 1,680 electronic table games.  The integrated resort will offer the ultimate in entertainment, hotel, retail, dining, and lifestyle experiences.

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DreamWorks characters join Mr. Jorge Sarmiento, President of PAGCOR, with Mr. Clarence Chung, Chairman and President of Melco Crown Philippines; Mr. James Clark, Head of Retail Development and Entertainment for Asia Pacific of DreamWorks Animation; along with SM Group partners.

Early Christmas Present

City of Dreams Manila including DreamPlay by DreamWorks is set to open its doors late this year 2014.  There are no details yet as to entrance rates and schedules but you still have plenty of time to save some extra leisure money for this.  I’m absolutely positively certain that the entire family will have the time of their life at the world’s first Edutainment Center.  A day (or two, or more…) at DreamPlay would be a truly awesome Christmas gift for the little ones. 🙂

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Soundbites Music Festival, brought to us by Robinsons Malls in partnership with The Philippine Star, will continue to delight us with great pinoy music this weekend at Robinsons Manila.  If you missed Side A, Reggae Mistress and Sabor Latino’s gigs at Robinsons Magnolia last weekend, head on over to Manila tomorrow night, May 23, and Saturday, May 24.

Funky soul and reggae music from BRASS PAS PAS PAS PAS and BROWNMAN REVIVAL will entertain shoppers and foodies at Robinsons Manila on Friday night.  Saturday night, SIDE A will make your hearts swoon again this time in Robinsons Manila.  You also won’t want to miss the last leg of Soundbites at Robinsons Galleria on May 30.  Kahit Walang Sabihin, I know you heart RICO BLANCO, too. 🙂

Get FREE entrance tags to the Soundbites Music Festival with every P500 purchase from participating restaurants in Robinsons Magnolia, Robinsons Galleria, and Robinsons Manila.  Click here for the full list.

Here’s a peek of the fun night we had during the first leg of the Soundbites Music Festival last May 17:

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Fun games and raffle prizes for the crowd!

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Sumeselfie with Side A