Thursday, November 28, 2013

Christmas Spirit

Since this will be my first Christmas as a WAHM, it's pretty obvious that I am so excited to decorate our home.  I like Christmas spirit to be alive as I am staying home for good and this is a good way to start rekindling those sweet memories when I just got married and we were just starting to build our first home. But since a lot of unexpected misfortunes happened in the country and there's a lot of people out there who are truly in need, I've decided to keep everything as simple as possible. I will just decorate our home with plain and basic Christmas decors, some are even DIY decors.  Anyway, the spirit of Christmas lies in our hearts and not on any material things or possessions.  I know it would be great to put up some lovely Christmas figurines like what I saw from department 56 new england village but perhaps I could just reserve it for next year. :)

I'm loving DIY projects now and I feel more fulfilled doing some worthwhile things on my free time.  I don't have much free time though but I see to it that I'm able to manage our home and attend to my online works without compromising my other priorities.  I am thankful for the gift of good health and creative hands as this allows me to do things that matter most in my life. 

Inspiring Decors

I love decorating my house and it's a fact.  My family and friends could attest to that. Just this morning, I retouched the paint of our garden plant box.  I still have left over paints of different colors, so I decided to retouch the paint of the plant box.  I think it doesn't look attractive anymore. :)

Browsing online, I found this cute pillow with an inspiring message.  I think it would be a nice idea to decorate your home with something that would inspire you, get the positive vibes and gives you more energy to work around the house. I love the message in the pillow, "Winning".  Somehow, it reminds us that life is full of trials but we just have to consistently remind ourselves to fight and win every battle, every mishaps, every challenge and every difficulty that comes along our way.   I know it's hard coz I've been through a lot already in the past but the fact that I am still here, standing and moving on is enough reason to say that I won my battle and it really inspires me to live each day. :)

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Gift Hunting

It's less than a month ago before Christmas!  Are you excited as well?  Yes, this Christmas season is going to be very special for me because I'm now a certified WAHM. I've decided to quit my high paying job to enjoy the comforts of being at home with my family.  Sometimes, it's a bit stressful and tiring to manage the household even if I already have a house helper but there's a feeling of happiness and fulfillment that cannot be replaced with any amount of money.

One exciting activity for the family is hinting for gifts for our traditional exchange gifts every Christmas.  My kids are now young adults and choosing a gift for them is getting harder as compared to before when they were just small kids where a simple toy, a pair of shoes, shirts and dresses will do.  Now, I have to live up with their preference in things.  I always give my son a watch as a gift.  In fact, this was my gift to him on his last birthday.  he's a certified watch addict and he has already a number of few nice watches in his collection. But he's not the type who would long for really expensive watches, just the normal brands will do as long as he loves the design and color.  I've been eyeing for these Nixon watches online but I'm not sure though whether he would like them as mostly the designs are for adults.  I might look for some on malls too but I'm not really decided yet.  I want to give him something unique this time but it's really hard to think and decide.

Anyway, I still have almost a month to go before Christmas, I hope I would be able to find a nice gift by then. :)

Friday, November 15, 2013

Feeling Restless

Now that I am doing an entirely different routine from what I've used to for the past six years, it seemed to me that I'm still adjusting.  Not that I'm complaining, in fact, I am enjoying my new role now as a full time home maker, a part time freelancer and a budding entrepreneur (lol).  I've always been a home maker and a mother but since I was actively working for the past 17 years, I didn't really experienced how it was to stay in the house most of the time and manage the entire household in the most detailed manner ever. :)

Sometimes, I feel that I'm so preoccupied with lots of things but I know that this will be probably be for the time being only as I'm not yet settled with all my backlogs in the house.  Once I am done with all the fixing, organizing and repairing, everything will soon be stable and back to normal.

Now, I have the chance to look after the house and my kids all the time. Despite of being a career woman for so many years, I could still say that nothing can be compared to being a wife and a mother.  It's a life long commitment that you need to master for the benefit of those whom you love.

Meanwhile, I still need to finish loads of job and I still have lots of plans for the coming months.  I hope I could update my blogs more often to share my thoughts and experiences in my new found life in our humble abode.


The Many Perks of Online Shopping

Now that the holiday season is fast approaching, many people are already on a look out for places to shop. For some, online shopping proves to be a better alternative as it can save them from lots of hassles of going to the mall, beating the crowd and more importantly, they can also save on unnecessary expenses on taxi fares and dining out while shopping. I would admit, I'm not used to online shopping before, I have the reservation to buy products online because I have the fear of not getting the merchandise on time, and I worry that the quality of the products might be compromised as we did not actually see them physically.  This notion slowly diminished until I get enough confidence in online shopping.  Also, since most of the people now are hooked on the Internet and most of their time are spent online, shopping online became every one's choice.  One of the perks of online shopping apart from getting huge discounts is to be able to shop anytime of the day and browse through a number of categories and compare prices of the merchandise from various stores in just one sitting. 

Being a Mom to a teen-aged daughter who's much concern about fashion, I have now more alternatives to shop for her trendy clothes, shoes and accessories.  She always consults me whenever she saw something online that really fascinates her.  She loves shoes and that's a fact. She recently asked me if she can purchase a top-sider to match her new jeans.  Browsing online, she chanced upon Zalora and was amazed with their Top-Siders collection that comes with a variety of designs for both casual and dressed up look! She's thinking of getting one as trendy shoes has always been a part of her Christmas shopping list.  I bet she will be on a look out for some teen bags and accessories, too.  

After you've done with your online shopping, you would soon get used to it as you could see the many conveniences it brings to the consumers.  It is by far the most practical and economical way of shopping that could be perfect for all ages.

I should know better, I am a fan of online shopping. :)

Hygiene Kit Campaign for Typhoon Yolanda Survivors

We are encouraging our fellow bloggers and everyone to take part in this joint effort to help Yolanda victims by donating a hygiene kit to the victims particularly those who are currently in the evacuation centers.  This donation, no matter how small it is will take a long way in helping the victims to at least cope up with their basic needs and help them protect themselves from sickness due to their uncomfortable conditions in the evacuation centers.

The devastation caused by the typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) has affected not only a few cities and houses in the Philippines but the majority of the Visayas region where the death counts has now reached thousands and number of families affected now millions.

A conscious effort is now being undertaken by the Davao Bloggers Society and Filipino Bloggers Forum to join the relief operations by raising a total of P100,000.00 to finance and produce 1,000 hygiene packs for the victims. Each kit costing to PHP100 or USD2.50 will contain toiletries and other essential goods for a week’s use of one person. Hygiene kits were chosen to be donated as this is something that is not yet prioritized by many donors.

Each kit will contain the following:

For MALES – Total Cost: PhP95.60

60g Soap
Weekly pack Shampoo – 8 sachets x 4 mL each
3 packs of 30 g Toothpaste
40 Pulls Pop Up Tissue
10 g Cotton
75 mL Alcohol
2 x 3 mL Deolotion
12 mL Insect repellant
Resealable Zip Bag

For FEMALES – Total Cost: PhP100.00

60g Soap
Weekly pack Shampoo – 8 sachets x 4 mL each
3 packs of 30 g Toothpaste
40 Pulls Pop Up Tissue
10 g Cotton
75 mL Alcohol
2 x 3 mL Deolotion
12 mL Insect repellant
2 pcs Sanitary Napkins
Resealable Zip Bag

If you are from Davao City and you wish to help or join the campaign, you may donate in cash (please seal in an envelope) or in kind (preferably hygiene products found in the list/picture) to:Mam Bebs BakeryCVA Building, CM Recto Street, Davao City (fronting City Triangle, adjacent to Ateneo Claveria Gate)

Mondays- Fridays, 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM

If you are living outside the Philippines, you may send your donations via Paypal to:

"Maraming Salamat Po!"

Thursday, November 14, 2013


I'm already on my 25th day at home since I resigned from work last month and I must say that there's a lot of changes in my daily routine.  Back in Cambodia, I only go to the office everyday and usually go online when off from work.  When online, it's either that I watch some "Pinoy"TV series or do some online tasks and keep my blogs running.  Now, I got more responsibilities to look after as I do not only manage myself but the entire household.  I still have a house helper but the domesticated side of me wouldn't let any part of the house left unclean.  I prepare and cook meals for the family.  I occasionally go out for some grocery shopping and to buy some foods at a super market.  But, the best part of being at home is that I could manage my time well.  I could sleep and take a nap whenever I want as long as I'm done with my obligations at home.  I always watch movies on DVD with the kids and can now follow the TV series that I just used to watch on replays on the internet when I was in Cambodia.  

I'm juggling with my time now as I also attend to the entrepreneur side of me (lol).  My days would be more exciting and challenging as I also go back to where my passion is, teaching.  Needless to say, I've managed to master the art of multitasking and it has given me an opportunity to widen my horizons as I get to do lots of freelance works at the same time.  That is apart from managing my home and looking after my teen aged kids.  

I'm enjoying every bit of it.  :)

Food Trip

Dining out is one of our family's favorite bonding activity next to watching movies.  We loved it so much when we get to share stories or simply pour out what's in our heart and mind during the day. This is the time where we interact with each other and share the joys and laughter no matter how simple the foods served on our table.  For us, dining our is more than savoring good foods, it is savoring happy moments together as a family.  Since, it is our habit to dine out when opportunity arises, sometimes there is the challenge of cutting down on expenses.  Since, we cannot totally avoid this, we have to find ways and means to continue this favorite bonding activity without necessarily being too harsh on our budget.  This is the reason why looking for discount coupons is necessary.  Since we love to drop by at Wendy's almost every week after we've done attending the Sunday mass, I always make it a point to look for free printable wendy's coupons.  I know that this can help us save a lot on our regular purchases of wendy's food products.  The problem is that getting free printable coupons is not that easy as this has not been so popular in the country. This is not the case in other major cities in the US as residents there could always have the chance to enjoy delicious hamburgers with Wendy’s Coupons Colorado. As it has now become a trend to use coupons to attract customers, consumers can now enjoy the perks of getting discounts every time they dine or take home their favorite burgers and fries.

For me, I used to order their fresh garden salad as I really enjoyed taking crispy and healthy veggies all the time.  My friends in the US told me how they love to take home meals from Wendy's especially when they are already very tired from work and cooking late dinner is already not advisable.  Good thing that they can avail of  wendy's coupons 2013 texas and use these on their regular purchase of their favorite meals.

I've learned the advantages of couponing from my friends and I'm glad that this can help us save a lot when we dine out.  No doubt that this has been so popular and widely used as a promotional tool of many restaurants and supermarkets, as well.

Being consumers, we don't only have the obligation to choose what's best for us but also to make sure that our pockets won't hurt that much.  Why do we have to sacrifice our favorite bonding activity if we can do it without necessarily affecting our budget.  It's just a matter of finding options and for me saving through coupons is one of the best ways to stretch out our budget.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Random Thoughts on a Friday

I was looking for something to buy online when my attention was caught by some great products on sale from music stores selling various types of musical instruments.  Suddenly, I became very nostalgic as I remembered that one of my greatest dream is to be able to play a guitar.  This was my dream since childhood but unfortunately, I never got the chance to learn the craft.  Probably, music is not really in my veins (lol).

I always imagine myself playing a guitar in front of a crowd or even during parties, but now I already forget about that dream.  I guess, I'm, too old for that now. I'm happy though that my daughter fulfilled my dream when she began learning how to play guitar few years ago.  Now she can play the guitar well even without attending formal guitar lessons.  I guess, talents are inborn, although some can be developed.  My daughter learns so easily even without using a branded guitar.  I wonder if she uses a more sophisticated brand, would it make a big difference?  It doesn't need to be the one with amplitube, perhaps just something a little bit better than what she's currently using.  My daughter is really into arts.  She's good at it and been receiving recognition from school out of her talents.  

Way to go baby! I'm always here to support you!  Meanwhile, I will just continue browsing for what I really wanted to buy online.  Perhaps, I should start with my DIY projects after.  At least, that's still considered an art. :)

Super Typhoon Yolanda

As we just have experienced a great flood last September 23, I couldn't help but have the fear for this super typhoon Yolanda.  Our region is not the center of the typhoon this time but I worry just the same for the rest of my "kababayans" in Visayas and Mindanao regions.  I knew how it is to be strongly affected by the typhoon and the discomfort that it brings to people.  

According to the latest reports, typhoon Yolanda has already made a landfall in Eastern Samar early this morning and packs maximum sustained winds of 235 kph near the center and gustiness of up to 275 kph.   Metro Manila was placed under storm signal no. 2 while 21 other areas, mostly in Visayas have been placed under storm signal no. 4.

From what I've been hearing from news updates on TV, Typhoon Yolanda might be one of the strongest storms in world history.   The President last night made an appeal to the people particularly to those who are staying on the low lying areas to take some precautionary measures, moved to safer grounds and get things ready and prepared for any possible eventualities, as a result of this super typhoon.  More importantly, we have to stay attuned to the latest developments about the typhoon which is normally being aired on television from time to time.

Be safe "kababayans".  Let's hope and pray that noting serious will happen.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Buying an Economy Car Has Benefits

People buy cars for different reasons. Your neighbor may buy a car for a completely different reason than you do. For instance, if he or she is more interested in performance than economy, they may choose to buy a sports car. If they are interested in hauling or towing often, they may buy a pickup truck or large SUV. If you are most interested in buying an economy car, then you should read this short article for more information. If you want the most bang for your buck, you should look at a used Mazda 2 in Kansas City. The Mazda 2 is a very affordable car to begin with, and by buying it used, you will save even more money.
From a design standpoint, economy cars can be a difficult proposition for engineers. This is because they need to come up with a car that has safety, economy, quality, and small size. In addition, all of this needs to be incorporated into one package that can be mass produced at a low price point. In order to achieve this, engineers have to be very innovative, and use the best design and manufacturing processes available.
According to Mazda, the Mazda 2 has a great power-to-weight ratio, and still comes in at a respectable 35 mpg. When you combine all of this into a package that has a starting MSRP of under $15,000, it is easy to see that there are a lot of things going for the Mazda 2.
If you buy a used Mazda 2 in Kansas City, it will come with great safety features as well. Some of these features include four-wheel disc brakes. These breaks come with standard ABS and brake assist features as well. Mazda’s new electronic Brakeforce Distribution system helps to even the braking pressure between wheels and ensures maximum stopping power. The suspension system has Mazda’s Dynamic Stability Control and Traction Control systems to ensure that the suspension is doing everything that it can to help you stay in control. The Mazda 2 also features a tire pressure monitoring system as well.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Hang like a local in New York City

If you’re anything like me, discovering how the locals live is the best part of travelling.  Going off the beaten path, becoming immersed in the regional way of life and getting to know the local hang outs is an exhilarating feeling.  Finding that tucked away funky bar to dance all night or meeting locals at their favourite neighbourhood deli for a 4 inch thick pastrami and coleslaw on rye makes for a memorable holiday not soon forgotten; one that’s more than just a collection of photo bombed tourist pics never to be shared – well except on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, right? 

So really, what better place to live like a local than the big apple!  Here are just some of New York’s finest local hang outs.   

Bike, Hike and Roller Blade

One of the most popular bike paths and walking trails in the U.S.A. is the Hudson River Greenway.  This 28 mile trail extends almost the full length of the island of Manhattan along its western shore with the Hudson River.  Offering easy access points to anywhere in the city, New Yorker’s use this path extensively for fun in the sun or a cool way to commute.  You’ll find the health conscious locals taking a stroll or biking and jogging along this path all day long.  If you want to get around like a New Yorker then rent a bike or strap on the roller blades with short shorts and hit the trail with your mates for a great way to see the city!

Upper West Side Living

Like any student or young professional, fun is had by hanging with mates in a corner café, shooting the breeze while sipping a decaf soy mochaccino - hold the sprinkles please.  It’s no different on the trendy Upper West Side of New York near Columbia University where President Obama himself lived and studied.  Head to Columbus Avenue in the West 85th Street area where hip cafes and trendy restaurants offer the best coffee and great casual menus.  The Upper West Side is where many locals live and there is a dense University population so you’ll be sure to find everything from little bakeries serving delicious treats to quaint shops.  The historic row houses situated along quiet tree lined side streets offer a great glimpse into that New York way of life.

Picnics, Footy and Snoozes

Smack in the middle of Manhattan is the famed Central Park.  While you’re sure to find tourists here, this is really the top leisure spot for city residents.  No, you won’t find the coffee shop ‘Central Perk’ from Friends here, but New Yorkers could probably go on for days about all the great activities to enjoy. Locals love to chill and hang in this historic 340 hectare park and they take full advantage of its stunning grounds all year round.  Enjoy a picnic overlooking the most incredible skyline in the world or join a local game of footy or baseball! Skip the horse drawn carriages and join the locals for a lazy stroll, bike ride or a disco nap under the oak trees.      

Birds Eye View at the high Line

Just a couple blocks from the Hudson River Greenway bike path you’ll find ‘The High Line’.  Located in lower Manhattan’s West Chelsea area, this previously rundown elevated rail line was turned into a trendy roof top like park and walkway that stretches for 20 blocks above street level.  Ready for another caffeine fix?  Chill with the locals enjoying a coffee or al fresco meal while hanging with family and friends. The historic railroad tracks have been cleverly incorporated into the stylish landscaped gardens and offbeat sculptures add to the hip atmosphere.   

New York is a huge, international city with loads to offer.  All one really has to do is walk its vibrant neighbourhoods and the city will open up to you.  New Yorkers are friendly but direct and have an often undeserved reputation for being harsh.  One thing is for sure, they love talking about their city.  With that, you’ll never be lost.    

If you need help planning your flights or looking for the best places to stay, one of your local travel agents like Student Flights can take care of this for you, live like a local, stay in a hostel or book one of the quirky and unique hotels New York has to offer!

Author: Todd Sturm+ is an American who has travelled his home country extensively and New York City has always been one of his favourite getaways.  From Broadway shows to Central Park bike rides, the Big Apple never disappoints.

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