Monday, January 30, 2012

How Do You Spell SUCCESS?

Got this image from my facebook wall and this brought me to ponder on the message written. How do we really spell success? Well...I guess you are already aware that I am not referring to the the actual spelling of the word success, rather I am referring to how do we treat those opportunities and failures as they come our way. 

More often, we would come to a point in our lives where we really have nothing, as in no accomplishments, no savings, no investments, no new gadgets, no new things, no friends, no opportunities waiting and when we reach this point in life, the question would be, "How do you manage when you have nothing?"

I remembered a saying, "Our happiness depends not on the quality of life that we have but on what is our attitude towards life." We are happy if we think we are! In today's world where our daily lives is often surrounded by material things, we have the tendency to depend on wealth as the source of our happiness. I would admit, I was once hooked into getting new gadgets every now and then, having signature perfumes, bags and accessories but later in life, my desire for these things died naturally. Well...there are times when I still get fascinated with these but the difference is I have a better "self control" now. Would I say self control or self discipline? Whatever it is, the point is, I guess I have already reached that part where I am in a better position to prioritize things. least, things that matter most to me. Now, I am not in a rush to get the latest gadget in town. Although at times, I would say I can afford it, but I would rather spend it for something that never fades or never devaluates. Something like spending for a quality time with my family like going for a vacation somewhere or spending it for the improvement of our house where everybody would benefit. I find this to be more meaningful. I guess, I became less selfish now. Before I spend, I would always tell myself, "If I buy this, I would be happy, but if I spend this for this thing, all of us will be happy." Afterwards, I would make my final decision. I still buy for myself, for sure, but I mellowed down a lot.

Now going to the second one, "The way you behave when you have everything". I guess this has something to do with, how do we value our work? How do we value our earnings? How do we value the important people in our lives? This all boil down to our behavior towards life. I've known a lot of people in the past who had reach that peak in their career where they earn really quite big and later on, everything simply vanished. Why? Maybe because they cannot control their spending. They find more ways to spend their money. Be it endless shopping, gambling and anything you can think of. An old folk once told me, if you love and value your earnings, this will also love you in return. Well, this is hypothetical but reading in between the lines, I know what he meant, we work hard to earn, so it's just right to value the fruits of our labor. Spend according to our needs. Do not let our hard earned money be put into waste. Do not spend like there is no tomorrow. Until now, I still remember what does that message implies. 

Now, I am slowly training my kids to value their "hard work" and to put the fruits of their labor into good use. I have one practice as a Mom that I would like to reveal here. I let my kids keep the money intended for their tuition fees after they get their scholarship. I tell them, they became scholars because of their hard work and I take it like they earned their school fees, as a result. Now these become their savings which they can put into good use later on. I never encourage them to spend this "hard earned" money for buying and spending on fancy things. I am encouraging them to keep it first and invest it later. I am training them this early to be responsible in handling their finances. 

This way, I can be assured that they will grow up to be responsible people. Success, I guess is how we make things happen.

Sharing my thoughts for the day! 


Saturday, January 28, 2012

Phil Health Premiums Increased By 150% For OFW's

I just had my home leave last December of 2011 and as usual, I went to POEA satellite office at Clark Pampanga to secure my Overseas Exit Clearance (OEC). I was initially planning to just secure my OEC online via the "Balik Manggagawa Program" for the returning OFW's. This program was initiated by the government to allow the OFW's to spend quality time with their families instead of wasting one day of their vacation just to process the OEC. I was glad that they came up with this idea. Mind you, if you go to the POEA office at NCR or even at the satellite offices, you will really end up spending the whole day just to go through this process. However, during my recent vacation, I was disappointed to know after I log in at Teleserv that securing OEC online is temporarily suspended until further notice. I asked one staff at Teleserv on what was the reason behind the suspension, but she also cannot give me a direct answer. I have no choice then but to proceed to the POEA office at Clark Pampanga. To my dismay, so many new things are coming up. By "new things", perhaps you already can guess what I am referring to. Tadah! More fees to pay... that's it!

FYI, starting July this year, premiums for Phil Health for the poor OFW's will increase by 150%. Yes, I repeat, 150%. From the original Php900 annual contribution, this will now be Php2,400. When I was waiting for my name to be called at the Phil Health desk for verification of my membership, I was shocked to see the advisory posted at the wall. After reading it, I approached one Phil Health staff seated at the counter and asked, why is there such a big increase in our premiums? I asked him if there are added benefits, from which he replied, "the added benefits were long given prior to the said increase". I asked him for any pamphlet available to see what really changes in the benefit package but after reading it, I can hardly notice one.

Come to think of it, why does the government in collaboration with this health agency would pass on their financial burden to OFW's knowing that the Phil Health is faced with around Php 20 billion arrears in budget. Is it because they know that OFW's will simply obliged to them? Is it because they are thinking that OFW's earn quite a big amount of money and that 150% increase is nothing to us? Or is it because they know for a fact that we don't have a choice?

Some of our brothers and sisters working in the Middle East had already expressed their protest to stop this premium hike comes July.

I felt very much disgraced by how our country is treating OFW's whom they always labeled as the "modern day heroes" for our substantial contribution in uplifting the Philippine economy. If that's the case, then why put the burden to OFW's? We go out of the country to work for our families, to give them a better future and to continually cope up with the rising cost of basic goods and services in our country. We do sacrifice for our goals, we sustain the difficulties of being in a foreign land. We are not "milking cows".

How many OFW's do we have? Millions? Php1,500 additional contribution per OFW per year equals to how much? I won't answer this question. Just do your math and you'll see. :)

Hope the government will try to reconsider this decision. They can increase the premium but 150% is a way too much.

What do you think?

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Are You Ready For A Loan?

Over the past years, I have seen a number of friends, relatives and colleagues who had gone into acquiring loans. Some of them used up the loans for constructing a house, purchasing a lot or putting up a small business. It is a well accepted fact that financing these projects involves a big amount of money and more often, if you are just an ordinary worker or employee, chances are you will be struggling to start with one. This is where SBA loans come to the rescue.

In the Philippines, a number of prestigious banks are engaged in providing loans to private individuals who are on a look out for an additional funds for their projects. Some offer an attractive payment scheme which proved to be affordable for most ordinary workers. They also have the small business loans for overseas workers who are aspiring to start a business of their own. In the United States, there is this SBA or Small Business Administration loans which does not actually provide direct loans but rather provides guarantees to loans that were normally availed through their partner lending institutions.

Whatever type of loan you wanted to apply, it is very important to gauge yourselves first if you are already ready to apply for a loan. There are some important questions that need to be answered first before we finally make that final decision. There are some basic guidelines to follow so we could prepare and gauge ourselves to go further into that important decision of acquiring a loan.

First, we must take into consideration our financial standing. Where do we actually stand now? Are we struggling with our monthly budget? Do we have a little extra funds after deducting our monthly expenses? How many percentage of our monthly income goes to savings?

Second, do we still have any accounts payable? Well, I guess this is a very important question. It wouldn't be a wise move to go for another debt when you are not still done with your current one.

Third, Do we have extra income derived from other sources other than our fixed monthly salary? For me, this is an important consideration. You never know until when your current job will last. It is important that if worse comes to worse, you still have other sources of income that may somehow finance the monthly payments for the loan. 

Fourth, How is our credit standing? Do we have previous loans that were left unsettled? Most banks perform credit investigation and more often, the approval of your loans will be based from your credit history. Of course, lending institutions wanted to know if you are a responsible payer.

Fifth, Do we have a collateral to cover for the loan? I think most banks are requiring this since they wanted to be assured that they can get their money back just in case you failed to fulfill your obligations.

These are just some of the points that have to be taken into consideration before we jump into that final decision of whether we wanted to apply for a loan. Securing a loan to cover for your immediate needs and personal plans are the best options available at the moment but it is very vital that we ought to have a deeper understanding of the consequences and risks that go with securing a loan. If after a careful evaluation of our personal finances and we think that we are ready, then that's the right time that we make our final plans and go for that personal goal that we wanted to achieve.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Walgreens Is Up For A Limited Time Offer

During the past years  that I’ve been working in the Philippines, our company had provided us with a comprehensive medical benefits package.  This covers our hospitalization expenses, purchase of medicines during the confinement period, and laboratory expenses.  For out patient procedures, we get free consultation from the doctors at the duly accredited hospitals, but we have to purchase the medicines ourselves. In todays time, where the hospitalization expenses are really high and the cost of the medicines keep on rising, we have to think of the possible ways to save for emergencies especially during times of unexpected injuries or sickness.  Some people resorted to getting a medical insurance while others opted to secure a health card.  In some countries like the United States, there are even more options available like joining prescription savings club and one of which is Prescription Savings Club at Walgreens where you can enjoy the following benefits as a member:

Walgreens is offering a special discount on annual membership for its Prescription Savings Club:…

For $10 a year, a family membership covers everyone in your immediate family, including a spouse, dependents 22 and younger and pets. Individuals may join for $5. Join and receive discount prices on your prescriptions. 

Other benefits include:

-Savings on more than 8,000 brand-name and all generic medications
-Discounts on flu shots, pet prescriptions, nebulizers and diabetic supplies
-Bonuses when you purchase Walgreens brand products and photo finishing services

You can visit Walgreens on Facebook for more details or you may want to check on Walgreens on Twitter for more relevant updates.

I guess, it is a smart move to avail of some opportunities like what is being offered at Walgreens.  The huge discounts that can be obtained from your membership to the club can be converted to savings.  More often, we do not know when health problems will arise but more importantly, while we are in our best condition, we also need to maintain our current state of health and for this, we also need to purchase some vitamins and get some flu shots or vaccines.   You can also manage your prescriptions through this membership by setting up the auto refill prescriptions.  This is applicable for those who are taking medicines for health maintenance on a regular basis.  
Health and wellness is everybody’s concern and this,  I believe shall be given an utmost priority. We work hard to earn money for ourselves and for the family, thus, we have to focus more on our health. After all, who doesn’t want to live longer? We can very well achieve this by leading a healthy life style and I am just thinking, why do we need to spend more if we can be healthy and frugal at the same time.
Support Walgreens and stay updated by liking them on Facebook and following them on Twitter @Walgreens. Encourage your readers to do the same.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Getting Rid Of Stretch Marks

It is a common concern for every Mommy like me how to get rid of stretch marks. Well, this should be expected as we all wanted to have a clear and smooth skin. I'm also a person who really looks after my skin. In fact, I've been drinking Vitamin E for years now as this was believed to contain a lot of anti oxidants and anti aging benefits, not to mention that it is good for the heart.

To take care of our skin, we must be careful in choosing the products that we apply to our skin, eat the right kinds of foods, moisturize our body internally by drinking lots of water and fruit juices and getting a good amount of sleep. When I had my first born, I also had some stretch marks around my tummy as a result of giving birth. This upsets me for a while as this really looks so awful. I don't know but this maybe a part of my post natal blues. Well, I guess it's normal for all mommies to feel that way as we all wanted to look our best. But since, stretch marks are part of the effects of giving birth, we don't have a choice but to accept it. But the good news is, there are lots of ways to get rid of those unwanted stretch marks and in my case, I was constantly on a look out for the best stretch mark cream available in the market.

There are actually ways to prevent stretch marks during pregnancy and this has something to do with the foods that we eat. Eating a proper diet may not totally eliminate the possibility of getting stretch marks but somehow, it helps. Eating foods rich in vitamins E,C and D may proved to be beneficial in caring for our skin during pregnancy and keeping our skin moisturized at all times especially in our abdominal area would be such a big help. Perhaps, around 70 to 80% of women suffer from stretch marks as a result of pregnancy and although there are few medical methods that were already developed to get rid of unsightly stretch marks, like chemical peel and laser light therapy, I would still personally prefer the natural method of using creams. There are various products being offered in the market today and all promised to reduce, if not totally eliminate those stretch marks. The key to choosing the right product is understanding what the product is made of. Active ingredients present in the creams that we used plays a vital role in providing a positive result, thus, I suggest that we have to carefully examine the products first before using them.

Whatever method you would like to choose in getting rid of your stretch marks, the most important thing is to do a research, get feed backs from other customers and understand your skin.

Having a smooth and clear skin is every woman's goal and we have to do our best to project that aura of confidence by taking care of ourselves inside and out.

Friday, January 20, 2012

What Makes Diamond Engagement Rings Stand Out?

During my vacation last month, I was invited by my friend to her sister's wedding. It was a garden wedding and was held at one of the finest hotels in the city. Everything was perfectly set up and the venue was tastefully decorated. The wedding's color motif was golden yellow and every table at the reception was adorned by a beautiful centerpiece consisting of yellow and white roses. According to my friend, her sister really adores roses and would always buy from the flower shop or at the market whenever she had the chance even without occasion. For this wedding, their flowers which consist mostly of yellow and white roses were all ordered from a flower farm in Baguio City. Well, it took them six months to plan and prepare for the wedding. No wonder, everything seems to be well organized and coordinated. Everything, from the venue, wedding invitations, souvenirs, foods, bride's wedding gown, groom's wedding suit as well as the gowns and suits of the whole wedding entourage were carefully chosen. My friend's sister had been scouting for a fabulous wedding gown as early as February of last year and has been very choosy as to the materials for the gown. She's really aiming for a perfect wedding.

My friend said, she was even consulted by her sister and her groom for their wedding ring. Well, her sister already had her diamond engagement ring a year before the wedding and she advised her sister that perhaps, it would be nice if they could also have a made to order diamond wedding ring to match her whiteflash engagement ring.

I have personally known the bride to be somewhat very fascinated with jewelry and his groom was very well aware of it and as the song goes, diamonds are a girl's best friend, the groom didn't think twice to get for her a diamond engagement ring. Not only that, they both decided to follow my friend's advice and ordered diamond wedding ring, as well.

While we were waiting for the ceremony to begin, my friend Mia recalled how her sister reacted the night after she got her engagement ring. She said her sister cannot contain the excitement and happiness upon having a glimpse of that beautifully crafted diamond engagement ring which was carefully placed in a beautiful small box. It was her sister's birthday when the wedding proposal was made. They had a romantic dinner at the same restaurant where they had their first date. According to Mia, her sister never expected that she would receive such a beautiful ring. She was thinking that an ordinary engagement ring will do. But she was wrong, her boyfriend, now her husband had been looking for the best one for her without her knowledge. The groom had chosen for her the solitaire ring design which was just perfect. Mia's sister so loved it!

Sometimes, I just wonder why women are so fascinated with diamonds. Perhaps because this has been the symbol of love and long lasting relationship. I told my friend Mia that for me, diamond engagement rings are perfect. These are often hand crafted with a personal touch from the designer. The production is precise and the designers normally choose a particular design with much concentration to make the design stand out among the rest. Now a days, grooms often choose a carefully crafted diamond engagement rings for their brides to be because they are aware of the fact that this is every girl's dream. After all, the ring will be worn by them at all times in their lives.

The setting and the shape of the diamonds can show a woman's individuality and class. Thus, it is often advised that grooms to be should seek for a brilliant designer who could make their engagement ring a head turner. A design that is unique and special and can withstand the test of times. You can never go wrong with diamond engagement rings. 

After all, diamonds are forever!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Anne Raquel's Resort

One of our family's favorite get away is a nearby resort, about 20 minutes ride from our house and one and a half hour ride from Manila and is located along the highway of New Cabalan.

Anne Raquel's resort has a lot to offer, enough to fill your day with fun filled activities for a refreshing and rejuvenating stay. The resort is quite huge and any visitor who is a camera freak would be delighted to have some photo shoots around the area. They have a large sized swimming pool with giant water slides, basketball court, volleyball court, billiards and table tennis.

Warning : This post has a photo overload (lol).

If you are a nature lover, just like me and want to commune with nature, you can enjoy the spectacular views of their luscious gardens, ponds, and man made lagoon. Enough to provide a serene ambiance for those who are looking for a day of total relaxation.

For those who wish to stay overnight, the resort also has comfortable and spacious hotel rooms. For day tour, entrance fee is Php200/head inclusive of free cottage, use of sports facilities, shower rooms, play ground and tour of their gardens. In fact when we went there, we were only five so I just paid a total of Php1,000 plus another Php150 for the rental of table tennis racket and safety vest for Mikz. We just brought some foods and drinks and that's it! Php1,150.00 fees in the resort plus around P1,500 budget for the foods and drinks for a fun filled day is not bad, huh. :)

Here's the complete contact details if you wish to inquire for your future visit:

Anne Raquel's Resort
Address: Miguel L. Santos Village, National Highway, New Cabalan,
Olongapo City, Zambales
Phone: (+6347) 224-2280
Mobile: 0927-3048173

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Xtremely Xpresso

The last day before I take my trip back to Cambodia, I was able to spend one fine afternoon with my daughter at Xtremely Xpresso Restaurant inside SBMA. This is one of the best restos in Subic and they specialized on pizza, pasta, western dishes and a good selection of coffee. I had mentioned on my previous post that Meat Plus, also inside SBMA has always been Mikz favorite place to dine, but this time, both of us agreed to try Xtremely Xpresso as I haven’t gone to this place yet. Well, Mika had been there one time with her classmates and teachers and she told me that they’ve really enjoyed the pizza. She said one order of the large pizza can feed about 10 to 12 people as this is really big and one slice is enough to make you full. Nonetheless, the reason for going there is not just to try their foods but because it’s Mikz birthday. Although we had already celebrated it by throwing a simple party at home with her classmates and friends, we just can’t have enough. After all, this also marked the end of my vacation and wanted to spend the day meaningful. We can’t bring along his brother as the latter had an important matter to attend in school, so it was just the two of us, mother and daughter team.

The place is quite huge. You can choose to stay inside the building or you can choose to stay at their outdoor area which I find really relaxing and the ambiance was really cool! It’s just like a garden setting and I was really delighted to see that there is a water feature in front.

After spending sometime trying to figure out what we have to order, we’ve decided to order a small sized pizza which according to the waiter is god for 4 persons but he assured us that we can take out what would be left, so it should be no problem. I actually wanted to order an all vegetable grilled sandwich but I just obliged to what my daughter craves for. We choose the all cheese pizza. I wanted to try their coffee so I ordered for a café latte which was a recommendation from the waiter. My daughter is not much into coffee so she settled for their special iced tea.

We wanted to see a movie after that afternoon snack but we've just decided to watch a DVD movie at home so we could be with his brother and grandma.

It was just a simple celebration on one simple afternoon but the memories of every place that we've been to during my December vacation will always linger on.

Friday, January 13, 2012

What's In My List For 2012?

Time flies so fast, we are nearly half of January 2012. Well...instead of coming up with a new year's resolution, I think I would love to share what's in my list for 2012. I am a bit conscious to have this published in my personal blog. What if I failed on my goals for this year? What if none of the things listed here materialized? Shame on me! But wait, these are only my personal goals and if in case I failed, then there's always another year to look forward to. Actually, every start of the year, I am always listing down my goals but this is my first time to publish it and make it known to everyone. When I list down my goals, I am not actually putting pressure on myself. Rather, I take it as an inspiration, something to motivate me and keep me going. Having goals helps me focus on my work and pushes me to be more productive. This allows me to put a challenge to myself.

Now...without further ado, here's my goals for 2012:

1.) Focus on my health. I have to stick with my Executive check up twice a year. Get some vaccines, if possible. Try to be more physically active or do some exercises daily even for 30 mins.

2.) Reactivate my SSS contributions. I have stopped with my contributions since I stopped working in the Philippines and work overseas. I am currently contributing to Phil Health and PAG IBIG, so I might as well complete the list. Anyway, I am the one who will benefit from this later. :)

3.) To finish my amortization for my third lot, so I could get hold of the Lot Title soon. This is going to be my third investment in real estate and I wish to have everything completed within this year.

4.) To push through with my shelved project for last year which is to change the entire roofing of our first house that's currently being rented out. This is quite a major repair and I know that it would costs me big "bucks". But since this is quite urgent, I'm praying to have it done before the next rainy season.

5.) To have additional canopy in place on my house where we currently stay. I guess, we badly needed this because of the unpredictable weather in the Philippines.

6.) To have another family vacation either local or international. Well...we had it last year at Hoh Chi Min City in Vietnam and I promised the kids to have at least one every year. But to where we are going depends on our budget. (lol)

7.) To cook more and bake more. I am a frustrated cook and baker, but I think it's not yet too late to improve my hands on this. (*winks*) It's really my dream to bake good cakes and pastries and to cook more Asian dishes.

8.) Finally, to have my new blog for 2012. It's going to be my third blog. That's the least I could have at the moment. Having a full time job combined with blogging and some online tasks is not so very easy. For this item on my list, consider it done. I have already started with it and I'm just currently working on my new domain.

Well....can I make it? I'm not so confident but I have to focus ahead and think positive.

Good Luck Krizza!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Effective Management System - The Best Solution In Outsourcing Your Business

Having worked in a company for more than 15 years, I've seen a number of success and failures when it comes to management systems. More often, a poor management system causes the break down of a company. Being in the corporate world, I was exposed to the different problems confronting a business as well as the probable solutions that were employed to solve these problems. The last company that I have worked with in the Philippines for the past 15 years was engaged on various projects as part of it's expansion programs and because of this, the company had been outsourcing works to contractors. For a company who outsources works to contractors, it is very important that there should be an effective management system in place. A lot of things have to be considered such as health and safety, training programs, work conducive facilities, insurance, medical benefits and others.

Employing it's own people to do the in house job guarantees a strict control over the services provided by the work force and this includes the effectiveness, consistency and quality of the jobs being performed. On the other hand, outsourcing the work increases the risk of losing control over these things and this may compromise the end result of the job performance. To solve this predicament, most companies often resort to obtaining contractor management services. This way, they can be assured of a comprehensive risk management program when employing the services of an independent contractor.

Our company had realized the advantages of outsourcing in business. It enables the company to seek the expertise of independent partners thereby allowing the company to save on expenditures and time. The result? Having the projects completed according to the time table with great results.

Well...our company had managed to expand it's business in no time and the stages from which these expansions had gone through proved to be both exciting and challenging. The emergence of contractor management services had paved the way for a time efficient and cost effective outsourcing in business and this had enormously contributed to the success of the company.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

A Night At Sam's

Few days before my departure from the Philippines, I did treat the family for a special night at Sam's Pizza House. This has always been a part of the list of my activities every time I go back for my vacation. This place is really a good place to hang out with family and friends. This is the reason why the place is usually crowded every time we go there. Apart from the good food, the live band had so much to offer to keep you entertained all night long.

We were only 5 people that time but I ordered quite a lot. My daughter Mikz wanted to have some pizza for take out so I decided to order the family size which is so far, the largest size.

The huge pizza that we ordered. This is our favorite flavor, "Manager's Special"

Chicken in a basket. I actually ordered the whole chicken. It comes with a bit of french fries and few slices of buttered toasted breads. But at the time that we shot this picture, the chicken is almost finished (lol). The chicken here is a best seller. It's really juicy and yummy! I also ordered "pancit bihon" and spaghetti.

My son was already full at this time and was busy watching the show.

Our house helper, Ate Elsa was also with us. I brought her along as a treat for her hard work. This is how I motivate her (lol). Well... she looks so happy that night.

The wacky band with their wonderful performance. This group never fails to entertain me every time I go to Sam's. They usually have their shows every Mondays and Fridays, thus we always go there either on those 2 days.

Pardon me for the shots shown here. It's a little bit dark inside and there was a huge crowd.:)

Overall, we ended up the night happily. We have some left over pizza that we bring home that night (lol). My Mom who initially didn't want to come with us also enjoyed the night. But, I was the happiest of them all as once again, I was successful to draw a smile on those faces which really made me feel fulfilled and contented.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Ambyanz Salon And Spa

One of the highlights of my vacation was the visit to a newly opened salon and spa in our hometown. This was our first visit to the salon since it was opened. I got curious with the nice decorations and tarpaulins in front of the building and the way I looked at it, I was thinking that this is a high end salon and spa. We went inside to inquire from the reception and there, they've showed us their list of services and I was surprised to see that the prices of their services are all affordable. I was expecting that their price is much higher compared to the others judging from their facilities and the over all impression that I have of the place.

Inside the main hall opposite the reception counter, there is a huge lounge area tastefully decorated and complete with a big plasma TV. What excites me most is the free wifi which really made us comfy while waiting for our turn to get the service. I was able to check on my blogs while watching a "teleserye" at the same time (lol).

We visited this place for 2 consecutive days. The first day for my facial and the second day for hair coloring and treatments. Mikz had her Loreal hair mask treatment while the mother dear got the Loreal hair treatment and coloring (lol). My son just settled for a hair cut.

Inside the hair salon, Mikz checking on her facebook while waiting for her turn.:)

Mikz having her Loreal hair mask treatment. She wanted to have a hair rebond but was turned down by the hair specialist. The reason? She's still too young to get the said hair treatment. Sorry Mikz, better luck next time. :)

Overall, the experience was good. The service was superb! With the low price and good facility which is really very comfortable, you wouldn't regret going there plus the service....everybody is attentive to the customers. Oh, did I already mention that they also offer a free drink? After your treatment or during the time that you're having your treatment, they would offer to get for you a hot coffee or tea and iced tea.

With all these that I've mentioned, I strongly recommend a visit to this spa and salon.


Friday, January 6, 2012

Mika's Birthday

Last January 2, 2012 we had celebrated the birthday of my lovely daughter Mikz. Her actual birthday is January 4 but she requested an early celebration to allow her classmates to enjoy the day with her as the school will reopen on January 3 and they wanted to celebrate while they are still free. :)

Well...the celebration was pretty simple. We just have the basics but we made sure that her friends will be delighted with the foods that we prepared.

Here's what we've got:

Her lovely mocha cake from Red Ribbon

Posing in front of camera.

Blowing her candle.

With her classmates watching her birthday video clip

Foods.... foods....foods. I prepared the following foods assisted by my son and our house helper : chicken lollipop, dumplings, spaghetti, ham and egg fried rice, sandwiches, buko pandan, macaroni salad, pork BBQ.

Having fun with her pretty friends.

Overall, the simple birthday celebration was a success. I can see the smile all over my daughter's face while having fun with her friends. I was tired, that's for sure but I was very happy with the thoughts of making my daughter very happy on her birthday not just with the foods that I prepared but more importantly, with my presence.

My share for:



Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Leaving My Foot Prints Behind

Few hours from now, I would be leaving my home once again to take my flight back to my job site. Contrary to what I felt when I was about to take my flight back to the Philippines last December 12, I was feeling a bit melancholic and not so excited to take my trip. How I wish I could stay longer to attend to my kids and my Mom who is currently not feeling well. I myself is also a bit sick having cough for more than a week now. In other words, I'm not comfortable to travel now. But what can I do? Life has to move on. I have some obligations left behind but I also have some commitments to fulfill at work.

I had fond memories of my vacation, that's one thing for sure but I just felt it's not enough. Yesterday was the actual date of my daughter's birthday and even we had already celebrated it last January 2 by having a simple party at home with her friends, I still asked her to celebrate her actual birthday with me. I fetched her from school to have an early dinner with me outside. It was just the two of us and the time was perfect to catch up with her and to make some "bilins" as I have to leave today.

There is a good side and a bad side of being an OFW and I guess, I have to live with it. Anyway, I've been doing it for years. But even though that this was already my routine for the past few years, the feeling still keeps on recurring. The boredom, homesickness and the mixed emotions that I always felt every time I have to leave home can be compared to a drop of the rain in our windowsill. Something that's never new. Something familiar that keeps on happening about two to three times a year which I can't overcome.

My only consolation was perhaps, the fact that I was able to spend Christmas and New Year with the family and of course, the fact that I was here to personally cook the foods on my daughter's birthday. I guess, that's more than enough.

I wanted to thank all my blogging friends who never failed to catch up with me during these times that I was at home and was not full time online. I will be very visible again in the blogosphere in the coming days and I hope to get some inspiration from all of you.

I am leaving my foot prints behind, but I will be bringing with me the happy memories of my vacation.


Monday, January 2, 2012

What's In Store For 2012

Few days before the new year’s eve, I was having a sore throat and could hardly talk. I was coughing and eventually lost my voice. Maybe because of the cold weather here in the Philippines during the month of December and I was constantly out of the house most of the days. Luckily, my sickness did not progress to a more complicated stage but I was feeling irritated over the past few days because of not feeling well. At any rate, life has to move on, I have to fulfill my obligations in the house and have to attend to my family. I was still able to cook few dishes for our “media noche” although in between, I have to go to bed to take a rest. I was in medications for the past week and this made me lazy to work on so many things. Nonetheless, the simple birthday celebration of my daughter Mika was able to push through as planned on January 02. Her actual birthday is on January 04 but she requested to celebrate it earlier so she can ask her classmates to come to the house and celebrate with her as classes will resume the following day.

As I woke up early today and feeling a little bit better, I had the chance to sit in front of my laptop and my random thoughts had brought me to write entries in my journal and also to come up with this post. Pardon me for my random thoughts. This might be the result of my post sickness blues. 

Anyway, I was just thinking, “What is in store for me for 2012?” To be honest, I have helluva of things going on my mind. I have pending projects unresolved from 2011, some commitments that have to be faced, the deteriorating health of my Mom, the growing needs of my kids, my husband’s sudden decision to change job and the uncertainties I faced, career wise. 

A couple of days from now, I would be going back to my job site and will face life’s new challenges. I don’t actually know how to begin the year right but I was thinking that if I have to begin the year, I have to begin it with positive thoughts and positive energies. I have to think that I will be able to do all my projects and that things will fall into places just the way I planned it.

For whatever it takes, I have to believe that good things will come my way and that this year will be a better one for me.

With God's grace. It will!


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