Last year, our family went to Meralco to view the Holiday display that they had. We really enjoyed it! So, this year, we are looking for things to do or places to visit with the light displays.

I remember when I was young, my dad would drive us to view Christmas-on-Display (COD) in Cubao. This was decades ago. Then years after, I heard that the Greenhills shopping mall had their own COD. I always wondered when they would revive something like this. Then, a few days a go, lo and behold, I heard that San Juan’s (the city) mounting something for this holiday season!

San Juan City Hall will become a dazzling spectacle of lights and dancing mannequins in a Yuletide-themed village reminiscent of the cherished Christmas-on-Display (COD) formerly mounted at the Greenhills Shopping Center.

“We’d like to continue a beloved tradition that many Filipinos had looked forward to for more than a decade of Christmases by staging the COD show right on our grounds,” says San Juan City Mayor Guia Gomez.

For Gomez, it is also a fitting Christmas gift to San Juan residents as her final term winds down mid next year. The mayor had sought out the Rosarios, the family that created the COD show in 1957, to bring the decades-old holiday
attraction to the City Hall.

“When I look at the display, I cannot help but feel nostalgic and hopeful about Christmas. It is a feeling I want to share with our people when they stroll at the City Hall grounds this holiday season,” says Gomez.

Themed “Paskong Pinoy,” the COD display highlights well-loved Filipino Christmas traditions that include family reunions with sumptuous feasts, Christmas carols, colorful lanterns, a variety of merrymaking activities and a fervent prayer.

The grand display also features some of the city’s iconic landmarks such as the Pinaglabanan Church and the City Hall itself. Alongside the COD show, the city government is also opening its grounds for a night market that will feature over a hundred stalls for shopping and dining.

“When we were conceptualizing the display, we wanted something that will make families go out and visit so they can be together for the holidays,” says the mayor. “I’m certain that even our balikbayans will enjoy the display, and perhaps wax nostalgic about celebrating Christmas here in the Philippines.” The COD show is set to be launched on Nov. 22 at 6 p.m. To make the occasion more special, some 300 children from the city’s daycare centers will be invited to watch the inaugural presentation. The attraction will be open to the public from Nov. 23, until Jan. 6, 2019.

“Hosting this event is a way for the local government to spread the holiday cheer. We can be grateful for our respective families for staying together,” says Gomez.

“We also want to express our gratitude to our constituents as we look forward to next year,” she adds.

The COD display started out more than 60 years ago as a gimmick by Alex Rosario to draw customers to the family-owned department store, Manila COD (Cash on Delivery) on Avenida Rizal in Manila. After nearly 40 years at Araneta
Center, the COD animatronic display transferred to the Greenhills Shopping Center, which hosted the attraction for over a decade before it was discontinued in 2016 to give way to development

We’re excited to visit this Christmas-on-Display (COD) show! Come and check it out!

The biggest holiday of the year is just a few weeks away, and this is a particularly hectic time for mommies like me. Apart from working on my businesses and blog, there are friends to meet, reunions to have, and shopping to do. On top of that, there’s the usual family activities, like play time and study time and, of course, meal time. And while it’s easy to eat out, nothing quite beats a yummy meal at home for family bonding, even though it can be tough to make time to prepare and serve food when there are so many other things to do.

If, like me, you still want to make the effort, though, here are a few tips to make your life a little easier:

  1. Batch cook and pre-portion.

Freezer meals are often a busy mommy’s best friend. There are so many recipes you can find online for dishes you can make ahead and serve days, even weeks, later. As an extra step, make sure you portion these out before freezing so that, on busy days, you can just heat and be ready to eat in minutes.

  1. Share the load.

Having someone to help you around the house is a godsend, but don’t just rely on yaya all the time. You can also get your partner and your kids to help with the meal preparation. In fact, having your child help prepare the food she eats is one tried-and-true way to reduce the chances of her becoming a picky eater. When she has a hand in making the food that goes on the table, she is more likely to want to try her creations. Plus, it’s a great life skill to teach early on.

  1. Clean as you go.

Keep the kitchen clean as you cook, and don’t let dishes and cookware pile up after meals. While it can be tempting to procrastinate, a dirty kitchen isn’t just an eyesore, it’s a breeding ground for bugs and bacteria. To liven up the cleaning process, I’ve been using Sanicare’s special edition Christmas print towels, which also have the benefit of prettying up my kitchen counter.

  1. It’s not a sin to order in.

Of course, there will be days when you run out of freezer meals and are just too tired or busy to take time out to cook, and that’s fine. That’s exactly why there are so many food delivery options to choose from. Plus, these days, you’re not limited to fast food for delivery. You can get meals from your favorite restaurants just by making a call or using an app on your mobile or on a webpage.

  1. Dress to impress.

By this, I don’t mean that you can’t come to the dinner table wearing your comfiest pambahay outfits. I mean that you can level up your meal appeal by making the effort to prettify your table. Even when you’re serving takeout, use real plates, glasses, and cutlery. Pick pretty placemats and add decorative table elements. One thing that’s on my dinner table is my Sanicare Liwanag Christmas Box, which holds tissues for easy access and features a pretty design by artist and MovEd founder Alex Eduque.

In case you haven’t seen them yet, they’re super pretty and showcase designs by an up-and-coming local artist.

One design is inspired by parols, or star-shaped Christmas lanterns. This is uniquely Filipino and, according to the artist, is a symbolic representation of a sense of promise and unification.

The other design is inspired by the stars. Alex Eduque herself says that this is “a constant reminder that we share the same sky and, despite the stark differences and circumstances in all corners of the world, that each one of us has a star shining brightly within.”

Isn’t that a great thing to remind ourselves of, especially at Christmas?

Anyway, if you haven’t picked up a Liwanag Christmas Box yet, here’s one reason to do so the next time you’re at the supermarket: Sanicare is having a promo! The grand prize winner will get four all-day passes to the Dream Play and Lunch buffet at The Café at the Hyatt City of Dreams Manila. Ten consolation prize winners will also receive P2000 in Sodexo gift certificates.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Take a creative photo featuring the Sanicare Facial Tissue Liwanag Series Box.
  2. Post it on your Facebook timeline. Start your caption with the phrase, “My Christmas is extra bright this year because _____!” and make sure to use the hashtags #SanicareLiwanagSeries #Sanicare and #SCPA
  3. Tag three other friends in your post, then publish.
  4. Go to the Sanicare PH Facebook promo post then click on the link provided to submit your entry.

The promo runs from November 22, 2017, to January 1, 2018. Winners will be announced on the Sanicare PH Facebook page on January 15, 2018.

Good luck and happy posting!