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Monday, July 28, 2014

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Movie Review: Panic Room

Hi everyone!

In this post, I'd like to talk about The Panic Room. It is a movie my grandmother insisted on watching. I haven't seen it before, but my grandma has and she just wanted to see it again. I obliged. Kristen Stewart was in this movie and she was just a teen back then.

Basically, the movie is about a woman and her daughter being trapped inside a "panic room" when three men break in their newly acquired house. Where is daddy dearest to protect the family you ask? Well, the couple were in the middle of their divorce. The mother, Meg Altman (Jodie Foster) and her daughter, Sarah Altman (Kristen Stewart) will be spending their first night in Manhattan when it all happened. The question here is, Who is the better strategist? Who will outwit the other?

I have to say, I enjoyed the movie.It wasn't too dull that I got bored and relied on my snacks to keep awake and it wasn't too exciting that it kept me on my toes the whole way. This movie was published back in 2002, so of course the gadgets and gizmos back then weren't too impressive. As you can see from the photo above, they were inside a room that had CCTV monitors, which allowed them to see everything happening in the house.

I enjoyed watching the part where the three bad men/burglars tried to get inside their panic room. I don't want to give specific details. I don't want to give spoilers because it will ruin the movie. I'd have to applaud the people behind the movie for their thrill inducing slow motion scenes. They honestly got me all worked up in that one scene. If you want to know what I am talking about, do watch the movie. I was also deeply touched by the mother's actions to protect her child. I'd have to give the cast additional points for being quite believable. I was either touched or angered by the cast. I noted it for it actually made me feel something for the characters. I was rooting for Meg and Sarah while I wanted to bring down the three men.

I think what thrilled me most about the movie is how real it is. A burglar breaking houses happen a lot. No matter what country you are in, it happens everywhere. The thing is, do you have a panic/safe room to hide in when they plan on hurting you? The movie depicts a scenario that will leave you a little bit of doubt before you sleep at night. I know it got me a little bit worried about the possibilities of a burglar breaking in at night

Overall, the movie was great. It had just enough thrill to keep me watching. It had scenes that were very thrill-inducing and ones that allowed me to be laid back. There were a few twists in the movie, which were nice and fitting. I think it is worth watching and I would recommend the movie to everyone looking for something good to watch.

I would have to give it 4 out of 5 Stars! ~~~~ 
Publisher: Jes Alysa - 5:08 PM
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Food Review: Walnut Muffin from Cup of Faith Coffee Shop


How is everyone doing? I'd like to share this nice little treat I got last July 25th from a cute coffee shop/Christian bookstore located inside the Christ's Commision Fellowship in Pasig. I was there for a seminar called "Turn Around Marketing". It is called "A Cup of Faith", a very fitting name if you ask me. I wanted to try something from there and decided to go with the Walnut Muffin.

I thought it looked appetizing and the walnuts on the top just made it a whole lot better.

The muffin was soft. It was coming apart a little bit as I tried to eat it. I took photos of it inside the store, but I asked for a bag so I can eat it while walking or while we're still outside the main hall. 

I really liked the muffin. It had the right amount of sweetness. The walnuts brought that little crunch and gave it a distinct taste. I think I also tasted cinnamon in there. I liked how it all balanced the taste of the muffin. Usually, the bottom half of a muffin makes me lose my interest because it holds the least flavor. In this case though, the taste of the cinnamon was consistent, which made eating it all good.

The coffee shop was on the second floor of the book shop. It had a flight of stairs that leads to it. If only I was living near CCF, I would love to stay there when reading a book. Although, I did notice how the floor in the coffee shop was a little "shakey". It was like it was vibrating a little bit.

The staff were very accommodating. I like how they handle their customers. They were all smiles and were more than happy to give me information I wanted.

Overall, I'd say it was really nice. I'd buy one again. I'd even try something else from their array of treats. My grandmother said it was the first muffin she actually liked, so that is saying a lot. She does not like muffins and cupcakes. She prefers donuts, but this one passed the test.

Here is a map that shows where CCF is. To all my readers/viewers, I'm sorry this one is located inside the Philippines.

I'd give the muffin a 4 out of 5 Stars! 

Note: I'm trying to keep the reviews/posts direct to the point. I don't exactly want to dilly-dally on things that don't really matter. I hope you'd like my posts better this way. If not, you can let me know in the comments below.

Publisher: Jes Alysa - 6:24 AM

Boys: Felix Arvid Ulf Kjelberg as PewDiePie

Hi everyone!

This is my second post featuring boys from Youtube. I have to say though that you will probably see a lot more Youtubers featured here in the future. I honestly spend more time watching videos on Youtube than shows on TV (Although, I do watch a lot of different shows on the telly).

In this post, I'd like to talk about Felix, another Youtuber whom I watch a lot.

Who is this Felix Arvid Ulf Kjelberg?

If you haven't heard of him yet, he is also known as PewDiePie in youtube. He is a 24-year old Swedish Youtuber known for his Let's Play videos. He has the most viewed channel as of July 25, 2014 (If you want to see the full list, check it out from Tubefilter), garnering about 100 million views weekly. He started his channel back in 2010 and only begun to grow around 2012. Today, he has more than 29 million subscribers.

The most recent video of his I've watched is the Sims 4 Gameplay where he creates his own sim. Watch it below.

Most of the time, I find his videos very funny. I am amused by how he reacts to what happens in the game. Perhaps that is one of the reasons why he is so popular. He somehow keeps you watching more. I feel like when he gives a normal Gameplay video enough energy or when she shows his personality through the reactions he makes, it keeps the viewers interested. I know it did to me. I am not a big fan of Let's Play videos, but I do enjoy it when I watch his. Let's say I enjoy his humor. I even watched his previous videos about the game The Walking Dead and Corpse Party. I'd like to take note those videos were more than 20 minutes each. For a girl who is usually busy, that is saying a lot. I also like how he does his high-pitched intros and bro-fist outros. I think they are cute and that it allows viewers to easily remember him.

To all the girls who are currently crushing on him, sorry girls, he has a girlfriend. A really cute one too! Her name is Marzia and is known as CutiePie. They sound like they're made for each other too. Marzia actually uses her own high-pitched voice as well. They even have a lot of videos together.

Aren't they just cute?
xo~ J

Publisher: Jes Alysa - 5:09 AM

Boys: Jack Harries: A Film for Ella

Recently, a young man named Jack Harries created a video for his girlfriend Ella. Jack is a Youtuber whom I've been watching for quite a long time now. I have been a fan of his and his twin brother's work in their channel Jacksgap. To be honest, I even follow them on Twitter. Jack and Finn (His twin) create high quality videos and help charities along the way. The more views they obtain, the bigger help they give out. I am very inspired by their ways and hope to one day meet the chaps. I have a lot of respect for their big hearts and intelligent minds.

Photo from: Jacksgapsite
[Although they have taken it from Ella Grace Denton's Facebook]

Anyway, let me get back to the film Jack made for Ella. Watch it, before give my insights. 

I was extremely touched by the video. He lives in London. Ella challenged Jack to go see her but not to tell her when. He spontaneously dropped everything and packed to go to Australia. He spent more than 28 hours just to surprise Ella on her birthday. 

To all the guys out there, do take some notes. It was absolutely romantic. I shed a few tears after seeing them reunited. I think he gave her the best gift for her birthday. The amount of effort he has put on to it is simply amazing. This kind of relationship just makes me feel like a hopeless romantic. I do think that their time together will be well spent. The last part of the video simply shows that they are having tons of fun. 

I wish them all the best and a belated happy birthday to Ella Grace Denton. 
Publisher: Jes Alysa - 3:51 AM

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

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Beauty: Godiva Solid Shampoo by Lush

Hi Everyone!

Today, I'd like to talk about something I've been using for the past couple of weeks. To everyone who didn't know, I am a huge "Lushee". I try to go to Lush, the one located in Glorietta, whenever I can. I just love going there because it smells amazing and I love looking at their current products.

By the way, if you didn't know, Lush creates fresh handmade cosmetics. They are basically a vegan, cruelty free company. Check their website here

The first time I ever saw a Lush store, I remember I was immediately drawn by the scent. It was so strong I could clearly smell it from outside. I wanted to buy something but I was skeptical because they were quite expensive. Then, I saw Zoella and Louise vlog about it. If you don't know who they are, click on their names to check their Youtube Channels. They are two of my favorite female vloggers. 

They have a product called a shampoo bar. I was immediately drawn to it because the idea of a shampoo being a bar was interesting to me. It would be great whenever I need to travel, or stay somewhere overnight. I was curious with regards to how foamy it would get. I decided to try it out. I got something called the Godiva. It is both a shampoo and a conditioner.

According to LushUSA,
"2-in-1 jasmine shampoo with conditioning butters:

Our vegan, 2-in-1 shampoo bar cleans and conditions your hair with moisturizing nut oils and shea butter. These butters and oils care for dry, processed locks and leave you with glossy, shiny, and softened tresses. Long used as a tonic for the hair and scalp, jasmine also perfumes your locks with an ultra-sexy fragrance with serious staying power. Named after a certain naked protestor, Godiva gets to work sending a message to your hair"

I have thoroughly enjoyed using the Godiva solid shampoo. I am a satisfied customer.

The first thing I noticed after using it during the first few days is that my hair easily gets tangled. I felt as if I didn't use a conditioner. The thing is, once my hair is dry, it feels really soft. After a week or two though, I noticed the whole "just shampoo" feel gradually decreases. I love the smell on my hair and how soft it gets afterwards. I also noticed how after two to three weeks, my hair got a bit shinier. It had a soft glow whenever I looked in the mirror.

This is basically the bar. It contains bits and pieces of conditioner and jasmine inside. 

If you are wondering how it is actually used, here is a little how-to video. 

How to use:

The shampoo should last for 2-3 months. Mine lasted for a month, but my grandma was using it as well. We both use it twice a day, so you do the math.

P.S. Refrain from keeping it in a container that keeps getting wet. Once it is in a puddle of water, it melts.

Overall, I enjoyed using it. I like how it made my hair soft and a little shiny. I also love the smell. I love smelling my hair while trying to dry it. I would recommend it. I will also buy more. I'll probably try different shampoo bars and solid conditioners. I'd love to see more products from Lush.

I'd give this product 4 Stars!

Publisher: Jes Alysa - 6:21 AM

Thursday, July 3, 2014

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Movie Review: The Purge

What if one night every year you could commit any and all crimes you wish?

Hi Everyone, today I would like to share a movie I recently watched. I have been looking for horror films and I stumbled upon this one. it was released back in 2013. The movie portrays the future of the United States of America. In the movie, America has flourished economically, but removed the security the law has provided. For 12 hours any and all crime is allowed. Police and Hospitals aren't available to help. Because of this, people either lock themselves inside their house or they go out to hunt or purge. The movie shows how a wealthy family gets targeted and attacked by people from the outside when a stranger was let in by a family member. 

Image Link

When people start to get a bit worried about the coming "Purge" it starts to get on my nerves as well. I was a tad scared about what would happen in the film. The fighting hasn't even started yet and I already see what the people behind the movie intend to fill the minds of the viewers. I only hope they can deliver the thrill and fear I'd like to feel from the whole film. I've noticed a few things about the movie, which are:

1. The importance of self protection. There are a lot of arguments regarding this topic. It tackles the importance of owning weapons to protect themselves versus the importance of not owning weapons to not hurt other people. It also goes into the importance of knowing self defense. In our world today, is it safe not to own weapons or know how to defend yourself? We all have different views in this matter, but I do believe that self defense is important. I'm not necessarily saying you should own a gun. We can protect ourselves in a number of ways. A year ago or so, I've attended Aikido classes. I wanted to be able to protect myself from people who want to harm me. 

2. The importance of morality~The sense of being a human being. Is it still a world worth living in if you can kill people for the sake of releasing anger and frustration? Is this what the essence of being a human being? If that happens, is there still such a thing as morality? It's scary to think people would welcome the idea itself. 

3. The unconditional love of a parent. The movie will remind everyone how far parents will go to protect their children. It's nice to see that despite the circumstances, the film shows some positive aspects in it. 

4. Learn who to trust. Would you trust an educated youth or a homeless man? We need to see behind the outside shell. We must learn to see their true intentions. There are people are good at hiding their themselves behind masks and uncovering the truth isn't easy, but what if it's a matter of life and death? Will you make the right choice? Will you trust the right person? Or will you trust no one? 

I liked how the concept was different from the usual settings we see. Perhaps the scariest thing about it is that it's something that is possible. It is not something that will likely occur right now, but it is possible.

Honestly though, the family made really stupid decisions. It annoyed me a lot because most people wouldn't do most of the things they did. I really don't want to give out spoilers but the way some of the main characters think just really gets on my nerves. I know it is just a movie and not real life. I feel like most movies out there make their characters a bit dense. I've seen it, you've seen it. It sucks.

I have to say though that the first half of the movie was good, but I started to lose interest as it passed the halfway point. I just felt like things could have been made better. I kinda saw the twist in the end, but it was okay nonetheless. In my opinion, the idea had potential, but the people behind the film failed to deliver the thrill it wanted to instill in the mind of the viewers.

I would have to give it 3.5 Stars

Publisher: Jes Alysa - 6:19 PM

Event: LeBran Dance Party All In!

Hello Everyone!

I attended a dance party back in May 30, 2014. I am only able to share it with you today because I was editing my blog template.

According to LeBran's website, "Le Bran is a unique dance fitness routine that utilizes movements from popular Latin dances and translates the same into body kinetics which delivers long lasting fitness benefits in mind and body. It is pioneered in the Philippines by Mr. Brando Balmedina, who has been conferred the title Fellowship in Latin American dances by the United Kingdom Alliance of Professional Teachers of Dancing."

Basically, I see it as a fun way to exercise. They created an event where people could party and exercise at the same time. I was quite curious as to how the event works. Most parties involve a lot of dancing, but this one incorporates it with exercise. I had no idea how it will work because I haven't even tried LeBran before. I have previously tried Aerobic Dancing and I didn't really like it.

Let's Start with the Cons:

1. Slow Start~Entrance: I reached the place a few minutes before it started. There was already a line of people trying to register for the event. I'd say there were 7-12 people ahead of me and they were taking quite some time to register. People were cramming the front desk and it took them quite a while to find their names. I wasn't even on the list.

2. Miscommunication between guests and hosts: I didn't like how I wasn't properly briefed about the free photo booth and where the baggage counter was. The people at the front desk were supposed to inform me that the photo booth near the entrance was free. also, I've been listening to other groups of people as the hosts were giving instructions on where the baggage counter was and from what I heard, a lot of people, including me did not understand where exactly the counter was. Perhaps I was a bit too focused on studying everything going on. I don't know. But, I wish there were clearer instructions and information given as the event went on. There were other minor instruction and information problems as the event progressed.

3. Uninteresting Start: Once I saw the main room where we'll be "partying" and people barely interacted with each other. I saw a couple of groups that just sat there and stared the main screen that showed repeating advertisements. I'd have to say how I had a few yawns myself.

4. No Free Water: When the tickets were being sold, we were told that there would be free water. No free water was given, but a tea company whose name I failed to understand gave away free tea. The host said that it was supposed to help when trying to lose weight. It was an ideal drink if you are on diet. I was a bit intrigued and tried to get a cup.

5. One Dispenser: There was only one dispenser for the drinks. There were a lot of people. You do the math; the tea area was congested. There was no line. People tried to cut in everywhere. It was basically chaos. Also, the empty cups were beside the dispenser, which made things worse. People were grabbing and pushing everywhere. I really dislike such situations, but I didn't bring water. I was also really thirsty. From where I was, nothing was done to try and fix the situation. The people were left to fight over whose hand would be able to get tea first.

6. Overpriced Water: Once I got back to my seat, I found out water was being sold. Not only that, they were selling it for 30 pesos each. It's overpriced for a bottle of water. I would think they'd lower the price to try and compensate for the whole "free water" incident. I'd choose the cold water compared to the free tea though.

7. Missing Staff: The moment I went looking for a waiter, so I could buy a bottle, they were gone. I tried to look around, but they can't be found. I decided to roam around. I found two of them on the other side of the wall that surrounded the dance floor, having a nice chat. In my opinion, they should be roaming around, looking for people who'd like to buy something.

8. Lack of Brochures: I tried asking a lady situated in the front desk for a brochure. She called a young usherette to help me out. The usherette brought me beside the stage to ask for a brochure. The guy said that they didn't have one and to return later because he would have someone get one for me. I returned before I left the event and they still didn't have one. If I was a potential customer, they probably lost me.

Was I a bit harsh? I was just being frank. Let's move on to the pros.

1. Friendly Ushers: I wanted to take note of how friendly and accommodating the ushers were.

The girl wearing the blue skirt is the one who assisted me. I failed to ask her name, but whoever you are, Thank you.

2. Good Venue: The venue basically looked like a mix of a club and a dance studio. I wish I could have worn neon colored clothes. I wore black, grey and white. To my defense, it would be easier to hide my sweat. As I mentioned earlier, I had no idea how the event would go, especially since it was the first time I'd try Le Bran. The whole "party" while exercising was a bit foreign to me, but Le Bran did a great job in combining the two ideas.

3. Good Music: I have to point out how I liked the song choices. Their playlist was fun and upbeat without being too annoying for my taste. I listen to a lot of party music whenever I need to get a bit of energy and there were a lot of mixes that I've never heard of before. Did they have someone remix it? I don't know, but I like it.

4. Several Raffle Prizes: I like winning free stuff. Who doesn't? I never win at raffles, but they're a good way to keep the crowd quiet and listen to the winning numbers. They gave away Le Bran gift certificates and merchandise.

5. Superior Dancers: There were these amazing dancers who moved gracefully. I enjoyed watching them perform dances I could never do. I believe they had the technical skill on point. They were able to match the beat. I don't like watching people dance off-rhythm. I also noticed how most, if not all, displayed this confidence that just radiates a certain intensity.

6. Interesting Dances: Back when I tried Aerobic dancing, the moves were all pretty basic and you'd probably get bored pretty quick. I enjoyed the variety of dance styles they exhibited. Everyone would be able to find at least one dance style they'd like. I don't exactly have the best hand-feet coordination, but I was able to follow a lot of the dances they prepared.

7. Different Set of Dancers: I wanted to put this in a different number because I thought it was important to have different set of dancers every time they changed the dance style. It allowed the dancers to showcase their specialty and it would allow other dancers to rest and retain energy. I'd like to point out how I liked that they have dancers in the crowd. Not everyone would be able to see the stage clearly and it helped that we had people to follow nearby.

8. Short Water Breaks: It wasn't too short that we couldn't catch our breathes. It wasn't too long that I'd lose the energy and motivation to continue. I hated the long water breaks from aerobic dancing because I'd lose the adrenaline and feel tiredness creep into me.

9. Consistent Staff Energy: If I notice that the hosts and dancers start to get tired and talk with a little less energy, then I'd probably notice the same thing happen to me. You get what you give, and the staff were able to consistently fill the room with their energy. It worked out well. I left the event still pumping with adrenaline and music blaring in my ears.

10. It's for a Great Cause: LeBran has scholars. The money customers pay them, allows the company to support their scholars. I believe that education is very important and that every child should have the chance to go to school. Life is hard. It's even harder when you're financially unstable. I salute LeBran for this remarkable action.

Conclusion: Basically, I enjoyed it.
Do I recommend it? Yes I do. I had fun and exercised at the same time.

Will I go to another one of their events? 70% yes. I'd like to think they would work out the kinks next time. Also, I'm not sure when they'd have their next event and if I would be able to catch the news.

Will I go to their exercise sessions? Whenever I have the time, I would. They offer free sessions near the Makati City Hall.

Event: I hope they would be able to plan and organize the event better next time. The idea has a lot of potential, but it lacked proper execution.
Dance/Exercise: Keep doing what you're doing. I loved the dance routines.

Website: http://www.lebrandfx.com.ph/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LebranDFX
Twitter: @lebrandfx
Email: shapeup@lebrandfx.com.ph
Mobile: (+63) 917 502 4677
             (+63) 917 655 5246
             (+63) 916 401 1490

They didn't have brochures during the event, so they sent it to me via email.
I would like to thank Ms. Cadlum for taking the time to send me the brochures via email.

Note: If you noticed, the cons were all from the event organization. I have no qualms about the dance routines. I thought they were fun.

Event: Philippines
Publisher: Jes Alysa - 6:17 PM
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Food Review: All Meat Pizza by The Pizza Warehouse

I was able to receive the first half of my allowance from my internship.  My mom was also in town which is why I decided to take my family out to eat. We went to a newly opened store called the Pizza Warehouse in Glorietta.

Ambiance: It was pretty generic. It had basic chairs, tables and lighting. The only difference is that they have this big glass screen that allows you to see what happens in the kitchen. You'd be able to see how they prepared the food and if they were clean. It was a nice addition. I don't mind eating somewhere with a generic look as long as the food was good and that it was correctly and cleanly prepared. There were a lot of people eating there and from what I see they didn't mind that the setting was a bit like a food court.

Staff: The staff were nice and accommodating. They happily answered whenever I asked a question. They also replied politely when I asked why their utensils easily broke.

Food: I ordered the 18 inch All Meat Pizza. I always order All Meat Pizza (My Favorite). Because of this, I was prepared to judge it hard.

-The presentation was okay. It was still generic. I couldn't see anything out of the ordinary.
-It was still really hot. If they brought it to me cold, I would have complained.
-Taste: The crust was a bit undercooked. It took quite an effort to slice it into little pieces. We often broke the utensils and had to ask for more. To our defense, the utensils were weak and substandard. One of the employees apologized and said that the new utensils won't arrive till the following week. The toppings were really nice though. The meat was seasoned well and was able to dominate the pizza. The cheese they used was also good. I love being able to identify the taste of the cheese in pizza. As much as I love meat, I also love cheese. It was melted and gooey.

 Sorry guys! I got too excited so I forgot to take a photo of the whole pizza. This is what's left when I remembered.

Overall, I'd go back. It was worth it and they did serve good food. I would probably inform them of the slightly undercooked crust next time and maybe they'd get it just right.

I'd give it 4 Stars ★★★★
Publisher: Jes Alysa - 6:17 PM
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Food Review: Bacon Cheese Burger by Malcolms' Burgers

I was still doing my internship when I created this post. I forgot to post it.

Hi everyone,

It was lunch time. My friend and I stumbled upon a place called Malcolm's Burger. I like burgers and I told my friend it would be nice to try something new today. She agreed so we bought our lunch and brought it back to the office. I bought their Bacon Cheese Burger while she had the Chicken Sandwich.

Malcolm's Burger uses something called Wagyu Beef, which is actually from a Japanese cow. According to wagyu.org "Not only is it a gastronomic delight, but it’s healthy for you too. Health experts have discovered the mono-unsaturated to saturated fat ratio is higher in Wagyu than in other beef and, the saturated fat contained in Wagyu is different. Forty percent is in a version called stearic acid, which is regarded as having a minimal impact in raising cholesterol levels. The profile of marbled Wagyu beef is more beneficial and healthier to human health." (read more about Wagyu Beef). Apparently, the burger must be consumed in less than three hours.

Ambiance: The place was pretty small. they can only put 2 tables on either side of the counter. Although it has a few more tables and chairs outside. It was very hot because they did not have an air conditioner. They wouldn't really need it though because the majority of the chairs are outside. It looks like one of those take out restaurants who placed a few tables and chairs just so they could say people could dine in. They had such a small space that they wouldn't be able to transform it into a traditional restaurant/ burger joint anyway.

Staff: The cashier was the only one I was able to interact with and he seemed very nice. He was accommodating. He didn't mind me asking about the different burgers. He said one of the best sellers was the Bacon Cheese Burgers and I was happy to try it. I even gave my preference with the bacon and they were happy to comply.

Food: It was really Good!
-The Packaging was a bit different from the other burger joints. Instead of individually packing the chips and the burger, they placed it in one box. Usually, other places that sell burgers and fries separate them, then just put them in one big paper bag.

- The Preparation time was quite short. While waiting, my friend and I bought chocolate bars from the 7-11 beside Malcolm's and once we got back, our food was ready. I wasn't able to take notice of the exact time, but we did take some time picking chocolate bars.

-The Buns were soft and didn't easily break apart.
-The Bacon was cooked the way I asked them to cook it. It was crispy without being overcooked.
-The Patties were really good. I thought they were seasoned nicely. It was juicy and overflowed with flavor.
-The lettuce, tomato and onions were all fresh. I liked that they were crisp.
-I also like the chips because they seemed like they were freshly made. they were all crispy and a tad oily.

Overall: I enjoyed my order and I plan on buying something from Malcolm's again. The Bacon Cheese Burger was delicious and I recommend it to people who likes burgers and would like to try something a bit new.

I would give it 4 Stars ★★★★

Deliveries and Inquiries: 836-4384
Website: www.malcolms.ph
Facebook: /Malcolms-Burger-Official
Twitter: @malcolmsburger

Publisher: Jes Alysa - 6:17 PM
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Book Review: The Reflections of Queen Snow White by David Meredith

Synopsis from Amazon:
What happens when "happily ever after" has come and gone? 

On the eve of her only daughter, Princess Raven's wedding, an aging Snow White finds it impossible to share in the joyous spirit of the occasion. The ceremony itself promises to be the most glamorous social event of the decade. Snow White’s castle has been meticulously scrubbed, polished and opulently decorated for the celebration. It is already nearly bursting with jubilant guests and merry well-wishers. Prince Edel, Raven's fiancé, is a fine man from a neighboring kingdom and Snow White's own domain is prosperous and at peace. Things could not be better, in fact, except for one thing: 

The king is dead. 

The queen has been in a moribund state of hopeless depression for over a year with no end in sight. It is only when, in a fit of bitter despair, she seeks solitude in the vastness of her own sprawling castle and climbs a long disused and forgotten tower stair that she comes face to face with herself in the very same magic mirror used by her stepmother of old. 

It promises her respite in its shimmering depths, but can Snow White trust a device that was so precious to a woman who sought to cause her such irreparable harm? Can she confront the demons of her own difficult past to discover a better future for herself and her family? And finally, can she release her soul-crushing grief and suffocating loneliness to once again discover what "happily ever after" really means? 

Only time will tell as she wrestles with her past and is forced to confront The Reflections of Queen Snow White. 

I like David Meredith's writing style. I thought that the book was beautifully written. He wrote vivid descriptions. This is the first 3rd person point of view that I've enjoyed for a long time. I usually read first person POVs because they allow me to better imagine situations and understand feelings, but I believe David was able to bring back my interest in reading 3rd person POVs.

The story gives you snippets of her life. The book shows you her life as a child until she becomes a grandmother. It was interesting to me because it was like a "behind the scenes" book. This is not the fairy tale we knew as a child. The book gives you a peek at what happens after the generic "happily ever after" of every childhood book. Snow white was different in this story. She was lonely, depressed and broken. I thought it was interesting and keeps you guessing what will happen next. It tackles several things/lessons:

1. Love is undying and unconditional

2. Moving on

3. Death doesn't mean the end of one's love; love doesn't die

4. A parent's love is unconditional

5. Time goes by so fast

6. Finding Happiness

7. Face your Fears

I would like to point out that the book contains violence and graphic content. This is a book that is made for young adults to adults. Let's just say 18 and above.

In conclusion: I liked the book. I liked how David was able to piece together snippets without it being confusing. It's an interesting read and it makes me wonder what happened to the other fairy tales.

I received an e-copy for a fair and honest review.

I'd give it 4 Stars ! ★★★★

Thank you David

Publisher: Jes Alysa - 6:17 PM
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Book Review: Swan and The Jackal

 The Swan the Jackal (In the Company of Killers Series Book 3) is superb!

I have enjoyed reading the whole book, even though my emotions went through a roller coaster ride. I can't stress enough how much I love the "In the Company of Killers" series by J.A. Redmerski. I have experienced heartbreak, anger, happiness and shock. I was basically an emotional wreck. If you loved Killing Sarai (my review) and Reviving Izabel (my review), then you better prepare yourselves with this one. I can't believe how time after time the author keeps on creating something unique and amazing.
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Synopsis from Amazon:
"Fredrik Gustavsson never considered the possibility of love, or that anyone could ever understand or accept his dark and bloody lifestyle--until he met Seraphina, a woman as vicious and blood-thirsty as Fredrik himself. They spent two short but unforgettable years together, full of lust and killing and the darkest kind of love that two people can share.

And then Seraphina was gone.

It's been six years since Fredrik's lover and sadistic partner in crime turned his world upside-down. Seraphina went into hiding and has eluded him ever since. Now, he's getting closer to finding her, and an innocent woman named Cassia is the key to drawing Seraphina from the shadows. But Cassia--after sustaining injuries from a fire that Seraphina ignited--suffers from amnesia and can't give Fredrik the information he desperately seeks. Having no other choice, Fredrik has been keeping Cassia locked in his basement as he not only tries to get her to recall her past--because she and Seraphina share it--but also to protect her from Seraphina, who clearly wants her dead.

But Cassia is a light in the darkness that Fredrik never believed existed. After a year subjected to her kindness and compassion, he finds himself struggling with his love for Seraphina, and his growing feelings for Cassia--because he knows that to love one, the other must die.

Will light win out over darkness, or will something more powerful than either further destroy an already tortured soul?"

Fredrik is currently my favorite character from the series. He was like the perfect gentleman in some weird twisted way. Actually, I take that back. He's not the perfect gentleman, but he does have what it takes to be one. I guess you could say he's a gentleman to some women, particularly friends and lovers of his. When I think of Fredrik, I think of Matt Bomer. He has that appeal that draws your attention.

Cassie is this sweet innocent girl who has an amazing voice. I liked Cassie because of how innocent she is without acting too dependent or weak. Fredrik kidnapped her, but she still falls in love with him. Stockholm Syndrome anyone? Like what Fredrik thinks, Cassia is the light. I believe she is. 

I wanted to edit a photo of Seraphina and Fredrik. I felt as if the photo clearly shows their relationship. She is dangerous to him, but he loves her nonetheless and vice versa. I am in love with his love. He is willing to do everything to get Seraphina back, but he is also showing a different kind of love to Cassia. He gets so torn up between the two it breaks my heart.

That is what it is... Heart Breaking. I am torn between Cassia and Seraphina. I want to vote for Cassia, but Seraphina also loves Fredrik very much. It definitely is light vs. dark. The book was simply amazing. I love J.A. Redmerski. I love her because she caught me off guard. I did NOT see the twist at all. I have read and reread the book. I still feel the emotions it gives off every time. Hands down my favorite book of the year. I don't want to give out any spoilers. It was a hell of a book. I'd rather you read and find out for yourself. And the ending? Gosh the ending made me cry.

I want to share this line from the book. "Break my body! Break my will, Fredrik! But don’t break my goddamn heart!" Broke my heart...

As a conclusion, Buy the Book, Go Read it and see what I mean. This is my cup of tea. I love it and I want to read more. There is a book that will come out though called "Seeds of Iniquity" it contains the back story of Fredrik and according to the author, possibly some of the other characters as well. No release day yet, but I'm excited.

5 Stars!
Publisher: Jes Alysa - 6:16 PM

Announcement: Back to Posting

Hi Everyone!

I haven't completed everything I want the website to have and feature, but I was worried about not posting. I decided to continue posting while I am doing a few more things to the blog. I hope you like the new layout!

Publisher: Jes Alysa - 6:16 PM