Janette Toral sharing her tourist experience in Australia.

Saturday, 29 November 2008

Sexy Gift Ideas for the Women We Love

Having 4 siblings, all women, you can say that I grew up mostly seeing things from that perspective. During holiday season, we prioritize taking care of giving gifts to relatives, business contacts, godchildren, nieces, nephews, before each other. I guess because we take care of each other all year long and even without Christmas around, we give and support one another in every possibility we can.

However, once one of you goes abroad, gift-giving takes a different context. If I'm a gift-giver and can afford it, I would like gifts to be a bit sexy and cool for my siblings.

Topping the list are:
  • Perfume
    Yes, perfume is still an outstanding gift to give and receive. With so many fragrances out there, one can get a specific brand or a set where multiple fragrances are included.
  • iPod
    If you can afford it, an ipod will be a great item to give these days. With almost each one of us have our own favorite songs, putting them in an iPod and listening to them when you like it, is just sexy especially if shared with a loved one.
  • Other sexy gift ideas
    • Laptop
      I think giving a powerful gadget like an Asus EEE will be most appreciated as that gadget is so compact and can even fit a nice lady's bag.
    • Aromatherapy kit
      The whole lot to make it really special.
    • Mobile phone
      The Blackberry or something like that should be a knock-out gift as well.
    • Jewelry
      A nice necklace, pendant, earring, bracelet, ring, brooch, among others can do well too.
    • Clothing
      A nice blouse or scarf gets appreciated especially if the item is well chosen and fashionable.
    • Book
      A feel good and easy-to-read book. I prefer the not too serious ones but still useful to read right away.
    • Movie or music collection
      A collection or series makes a nice gift.
    • Bag
      A nice bag can also be a good one to give
I'm sure there'll be more sexy gifts that you can think of that we can give to the women we love in our lives. Feel free to post your suggestions.

Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Flowers at Barossa Valley

Last October 18, the family got the chance to check out Barossa Valley. There's not much to see at the place as is. However, if you have a camera with you, no matter what kind, there are a lot of interesting things there that you can take a picture of. Flowers is one my favorite subject matter. There are a lot of them there and even got excited upon seeing David Austin roses (my dream garden would be filled with them).

Sunday, 16 November 2008

Kangaroo Coffee Company

One of the coffee spots I was able to visit last month that had a special Aussie twist is the Kangaroo Coffee Company. However, this can't be found anywhere in Australia. It is a coffee shop in Davao City, Philippines. (I was there for the DigitalFilipino.com Club and Bloggers Davao Networking event last October 21.)

It has what a typical coffee shop has to offer. However, one item that you will usually find that is uniquely Davao is the Durian-infused ones that I make sure that I'll be able to enjoy. Another interesting item in the menu that I hope to try in my next visit is its (Asian Palm Civet) Civet Coffee variant - Kape Balos.

I am pretty much amazed how a local coffee shop was able to establish a look and feel that is at par with some of the big brand coffee shops out there. What caught my attention in-store as well are the boomerangs. There was also a Kangaroo stuff toy holding a boomerang. I joked my friends that its role is to throw a boomerang in case a customer acts quirky at the counter. LOL!

What is not known to many is that Davao City has one of the strongest policy against smoking in the Philippines. In addition to not smoking inside buildings or establishments, one can't smoke outside if they are in an "enclosed area" like an entertainment village or there is a tent that covers you.

According to my friends in Davao, the name idea for Kangaroo Coffee Company stems from the owners' curiosity on coming up with a name that can be competitive to a Filipino-owned coffee shop - Figaro. Then came Kangaroo. (some may get the similarity while others may utter duh? LOL!)

Nevertheless, I look forward in visiting Davao City in 2009 and get my chance to taste its Durian Mocha Heaven and Kape Balos.

Moving to a new home

(I will definitely miss this backyard where I usually find snails crossing)

When my partner moved to Australia last year, he became a full-fledged online shopper. Some of the furniture we have at home were purchased through eBay, garage sale, rentals, and the like. That worked well for us because he is a frugal shopper eager to get the best deal he can find.

On the other hand, when my brother-in-law moved in the country to work, his shopping style was quite different and availed a lot of stuff through stores like Radio Rental. I guess he was partly in a hurry and wants everything settled within a month.

On the 1st quarter of 2009, we will be moving to a new place as the owner of the house we are living in now shall be selling their property soon. It is also a good opportunity to check out new home furnishings and decor for that purpose especially bedroom related stuff. I'm actually a bedroom person and usually get hit by ideas while resting. My standard on how beds should be has increased through the years and my partner tends to get agitated when I insist for the more expensive stuff. Comfort has its price as what they say. The most memorable spots kept in my travel memories are those with the best beds, mattress, and pillows. LOL!

So more eBay for us and actual at-the-store shopping this next two months.

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

I'm not immigrating to Australia

The challenge about maintaining an Australia-themed blog is that it created an impression to some of my peers in the Philippines that I have migrated to Australia. Here are some facts to correct this misconception.
  1. My partner is an overseas Filipino worker in South Australia that started in early 2007 and will last up to the end of 2010.
  2. Half of my time is spent in the Philippines. I visit Australia to be with family although most of my Internet time is spent on concerns in the Philippines. I haven't really explored opportunities although in my earlier research, I noticed that the location I'm in (Findon / Adelaide / South Australia) is not exactly a hotspot or hub for it.
Admittedly, my partner explored getting a permanent residence status but it got declined. Having a non-immigrating special child in the Philippines is the reason behind it. Being rejected is a major setback in a sense that my kids studying in Australia right now won't be able to enjoy schooling opportunities. They will have to study with an international student status as two of them starts their university or TAFE studies next year.

I'll be back in Australia later this month to spend the Christmas season there while working on my scheduled return to Manila this January or February.

So I hope that clarifies - I'm not immigrating to Australia.