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Maan

Kindergarten School

6 Reasons Why I’m Loving Yuri’s Big School

It’s no secret that Yuri’s current school now was not our top choice when we were initially school-hunting. I didn’t really not like this school — it’s just that I wanted to try something new because almost ten years of my life was spent inside this very campus.

Then again, life rarely goes according to plan, and we found ourselves enrolling in the very school that I voted against! We had to consider the logistics and the practicality of doing so — it’s just the most ideal choice at the moment considering those factors. Buuut after a couple of weeks of going to school and parent orientations, one being the first PTA meeting for this school year, I think I’m realising the merits of the decision.

Going to my first PTA meeting, wet uncombed hair and all

1. No heavy bags for the kids

I recently read in Mommy Fleur‘s blog how her daughter has to deal with a heavy school bag every day. I remember doing the same as a child; all my books (an average of 5-7) stuffed into my backpack together with my notebooks (8-10), pencil case, and other school stuff. And we haven’t included the baon yet.

I was pleased to find out that I didn’t need to buy Yuri a huge bag for school. The young children at school, from preschool/kindergarten to 2nd grade, all have lockers where they keep their books and notebooks. I’m not sure about the graders, but for senior kinder, they also have cubbies inside the classroom where all their stuff — art materials, toiletries, extra clothes — are hidden.

We’re only required to bring home the kids’ books and notebooks every weekend, so for the rest of the week, they don’t have to bring anything save for pencils, some supplies, and their baon. 

Yuri’s bag just holds his handbook, pencil case, a supply case (crayons, glue, etc.), wipes, towel, and a sanitizer. It looks big but it’s actually super light. 

(In fact, during the PTA meeting last Saturday, the teachers reminded the parents not to let their kids use huge stroller bags anymore because they didn’t need to!)

2. Little homework (so far…)

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Personal

Yuri’s Asthma Scare

Almost a month ago, I rushed Yuri to the hospital because he was having difficulty breathing.

I was supposed to write about this, well, almost a month ago, but school-related stuff piled up, my birthday came up — a lot of things happened. Also, I didn’t dwell on this issue anymore because Yuri already got better, not to mention I don’t really talk about our hospital visits here in my blog.

However, as I was looking through my phone gallery, I saw the pictures again and remembered the entire ordeal. I thought I should write about it because it can help a reader who might encounter these symptoms someday.

Yuri’s health scare started early morning of May 24th. It was still dark when I woke up to Yuri making gasping noises. I initially dismissed it for stuffy nose because he was also having a cold.

But it didn’t sound right. He was literally gasping for air. I adjusted his position so that his head rested higher on his pillow and then he seemed to recover. I went back to sleep because I think it was still around 4 am. When the sun rose, he started gasping again for air, and I started to worry because his face was already looking like this:

He was still trying to sleep, poor baby

He was sobbing and I assumed it was because of the stuffy nose (again!). That he was actually unable to breathe didn’t immediately cross my mind. There’s no one in the family who is asthmatic so I wasn’t familiar with the symptoms. I tried to relieve what Yuri was feeling by applying  Eukybear ointment, changing his position from time to time, letting him breathe in some steam — because I kept thinking it must be his cold. It was after he vomited when I finally listened to my gut feeling and took him to the hospital.

Even though I didn’t know what illness he was having, I remembered counting Yuri’s breathing because it was so rapid. I remembered counting up to 60-75/minute at one time — the normal respiratory rate for a 5-year old is just 20-30/minute.

When Yuri’s pediatrician saw him and saw his rapid respiratory rate, she immediately ordered for him to be nebulized for an hour with breaks in between. According to doc, if he doesn’t get better after nebulization, then it’s hospital confinement for him. She didn’t mention, but when I asked if it could be pneumonia, Yuri’s doctor couldn’t confirm nor deny. At that point, she couldn’t confirm, too, if Yuri was asthmatic or not. It all depended on whether Yuri gets better after nebulization.

It was my very first time to see a nebulizer. Like what I said, there’s no one in the family who was asthmatic, so I was experiencing nebulization for the first time. Immediately after the first dose, Yuri started getting better. After 40 minutes of nebulization, he was able to eat for the first time that day. Thank you Lord! More than an hour and four vials of medicine later, Yuri’s respiratory rate was down to 35/minute and was feeling a lot better.

Honestly, I shudder to think about what could have happened if I didn’t bring Yuri to the hospital. It was only after getting nebulized that he was able to breathe, so Yuri would have suffered a lot if we stayed at home and let him “rest.”

We went back to Yuri’s doctor’s office (when we arrived at the hospital earlier, I had to carry him because he was too weak to walk; by this time, he was already fine walking on his own) to hear the diagnosis. The doctor saw Yuri’s improvement so there was no need for him to be confined. However, he was still under observation for 5 days. If his breathing became rapid again, we were to go immediately to the ER. But after 5 days of religiously taking medicine, it never happened again. Praise God!

To be honest, I am still unsure whether Yuri is asthmatic or not. According to his doctor, there were too many factors to consider. It could have been an asthma attack, or it could have been his cold. It could have been a viral infection (bronchiolitis), or it could have been caused by smoke inhalation or exposure to harsh weather (we went out-of-town about a week before this event). Neither I nor Job has history of asthma, but there’s still a possibility since I have allergic rhinitis.

Even though it’s been a month, I am still observing Yuri. This time, I will be more vigilant and I will listen to my gut feeling right away. Mother’s instinct is real!

Here are the things I learned that might come in handy for you someday:

  • Take note of children’s normal respiratory rate. It varies per age, but it can be easily Googled. If your child’s breathing exceeds this without reason, please see the doctor.
  • Without counting breaths per minute, you can easily spot a child who is breathing rapidly. Look out for flared nostrils, high-pitched breathing sounds, and retraction: “the skin sucking in (indrawing) in the chest below the rib cage, above the collarbone, between the ribs or in the neck” (About Kids Health).
  • Rapid breathing coupled with vomiting is never a good combination.
  • Even if asthma doesn’t run in your family, a child might still get it.
  • If you suspect pneumonia, go to the ER right away.
  • If you suspect asthma and you don’t have a nebulizer at home, go to the ER right away.
  • Listen to your gut feeling. It’s better to hear your doctor assure you that nothing is wrong than stay at home and let the child suffer because you think there is nothing wrong.
Kindergarten School

Yuri and the First Week of Kindergarten School

I feel so exhausted! It’s just been one week (actually, four days!) that Yuri was at school, yet I feel like I’ve used up all of my humanly powers. In that short period of time, I realised, I’m not Wonder Woman! And it pains me so much to say that, lololol!

Seriously though, it’s been a really full week. Even if I had two days off (Monday was a holiday and I took a leave Tuesday because it was Yuri’s first day of school), it doesn’t feel anything like it. If anything, it feels as if I just came from an 80-hour work week. Having a student is not easy pala! 

I usually wake up at 5:30 (yes, even in the summer), but before school started, this meant spending time in a devotional, trying to work out, and preparing for the day. This time, it means preparing Yuri’s things, uniform, and baon. He doesn’t have to go to school until lunch time — we enrolled him in the afternoon session because of reasons — but since I have work, as much as possible, I need to get everything done within the first hour of the day.

Later in the week, I would find out that it’s a hundred times more better to prepare everything the night before. Hey, I’m still learning! 😀

I spent Monday and Tuesday doing school-mum stuff. I laundered all his uniform, school underwear (just white socks, white sandos, and white briefs), PE uniform, proceeded to iron them, washed his lunch boxes, water bottles, accessories, prepared his things and requirements, went to the mall to buy the last items still un-ticked on his requirement checklist, and did grocery shopping for baon. The works. I still had time to meet up with my best friend George for dinner, so I’m gonna give myself a pat on the back for that haha.

Well, I also learned that preparing for school a day before it starts and preparing on the first day of school itself were two completely different things. I can’t say I was frazzled because I still managed to have fun, but I think I did use all of my major muscle groups. I did manage to get these snapshots!

Weapon of choice: my trusty Instax 210 + film of course

Yuri’s first day baon: Tuna sandwich, cheese shapes, pizza shapes, and Keebler wafers

On the way to school! I brought him to the barbershop earlier that day so his hair was just freshly cut and styled

Hello, school! Let’s do this!

Welcome to kindergarten, noob mama! I swear, there is nothing more intimidating than a group of confident veteran school-mums when you’re melting into a puddle of nerves.

Hello, classroom! This was a really old classroom, a lot older than I am. The elementary building is, I think, the oldest building in the campus.

It’s good to know, though, that the inside was maintained nicely: clean and spacious and well-lit. A/C units look fairly new and it has an overhead projector na lol!

The adjacent classroom was converted into a playroom just for the K2 pupils. It’s also airconditioned and the place is really clean. Yuri’s one of the early birds so he had the place to himself. His favourite things are the bahay-kubo slide (behind Yuri) and the ball pit (right)!

Segue about the playroom: There was no separation anxiety or any drama among the kids, like at all. This was because they were all put inside the playroom to interact with their classmates, teacher, and titas (teacher aides). Yuri didn’t even look at me once he was inside.

The only “drama” that happened came from a boy classmate who arrived late. By the time he arrived, play time was already over and they were back in the classroom. It did not sit well with the child, obviously, and he cried. It does serve as a good lesson about punctuality for Yuri (and maybe his other classmates too).

Second day baon! Peanut butter sandwich, Keebler wafers, ham & cheese shapes, and a banana

I love PE uniform days because they’re easier to iron bahaha!

I really like the lady guard (the one sweeping the floor). She never fails to smile and she talks to the students, especially the smaller ones, in a motherly way. Also, she allowed me to go inside when I was wearing shorts. In my defence, I did not know the dress code was already being implemented during the orientation week! Oops!

A cut-out star can absolutely make a 5-year old’s day 😀

He didn’t even notice me when I was right there. Hi Yuri! 😀 (Also, he wasn’t wearing his PE uniform because a new schedule was given the day before, the day when he was wearing his PE uniform haha)

It was a fun first week. Right after the first day, my nervousness disappeared, and it’s hugely because Yuri was having so much fun at school. He loves his teacher, the titas, his classmates… the play room! LOL! In fact, for him, Monday can’t arrive quickly enough! As for me, I’m going to enjoy my weekend (I just finished washing his clothes ~again~ and wrapping his notebooks in plastic cover) because next week will be a new adventure!

General Information Money Matters

Adulting 101: My Sunlife Variable Universal Life Insurance (VUL)

Sun Life VUL

There’s just something so “adulty” about the word insurance, don’t you agree?

A VUL is a variable universal life insurance. According to Investopedia, a VUL is a form of cash-value life insurance that offers both a death benefit and an investment feature.

This post is actually 6 months late because I got my very first life insurance policy way back in December last year. I had a draft started, but I never got around to actually writing it. But I remembered it a couple of days ago because my payment was already due lol. Also, a couple of my previous officemates were asking about the VUL. Why did I get Sun Life’s VUL? This is not a sponsored post; I just want to tell you about it.

I never planned to get an insurance policy. Job and I, we decided to start investing in a mutual fund, so that’s what I looked for. After doing some research and comparison, I decided to go pay the local Sun Life office a visit.

Sun Life Davao

(Trivia: During the Expo Mom bazaar in Abreeza last year, one of the booths I visited was Sun Life’s. I got in touch with an agent and even left my details and contact number with her. But she never got back to me, so I just went ahead, visited the main office, and got another agent.)

I met my financial adviser, Paul Chavez, there. I inquired about mutual funds since it was my original purpose, but upon interviewing and assessing me, Paul suggested I get a VUL instead. There were three main reasons that convinced me:

  • First, I have a son who is dependent on me, and he will surely benefit from his parents’ life insurance.
  • Second, we have nothing else (yet) in our portfolio. Because this was our first investment, it’s more prudent to prioritise protection over plain growing of money.
  • Third, it’s not like the money won’t be growing. The projected returns is quite high and we’re getting protection, so yes they’re right – it is like getting the best of both worlds.

Aside from that, there are more benefits outlined here including the VUL’s liquidity (you can withdraw your money if you need it, and it’s called “withdrawal,” not a “loan) and the flexibility of premiums (I treat my VUL as a bank and put in more money if I have extra). Because you can just Google the benefits of getting a VUL, and since I already described a few, I won’t be focusing on that anymore. Let’s talk about my personal experience and impressions.

Why I’m Happy With My Sun Life VUL

1. Because Sun Life is the biggest insurance company in the country and even outside, I feel safe that I am investing my money with the right company. You can do your own research about it and see for yourself the past performance of Sun Life.

2. I have a great agent and I’m very satisfied with the service. Paul is very diligent in reminding me about my due dates, and if I cannot go to the office myself to pay, he adjusts and personally visits me to get my payment. Unfortunately, not all agents are built the same, so please be wise in choosing the right person.

3. There are no penalties for late payments. While I always pay my bills on time, there are circumstances beyond our control (just like what happened to BPI recently).

4. The payment scheme is very flexible. When I first got my policy, I was paying monthly. However, it has gotten more taxing since my schedule is tight, so they changed my mode of payment to quarterly. Just like that!

Sun MaxiLink Prime

5. It’s surprisingly affordable. One of the reasons why I delayed getting an insurance is the cost. Upon inquiring, I was pleasantly surprised to know that it’s not only affordable, it’s also flexible. I have the Sun MaxiLink Prime, and to give you an idea of how much my monthly payment is, let’s just say it’s even cheaper than our Davao City electric bill.

6. Unlike mutual funds and other investment vehicles, a VUL withdrawal is not taxable.

7. Unlike regular insurances, a VUL doesn’t need to fulfil a single, specific need e.g. education. With a VUL, you can decide how you want to use your money, whether you want to use it to fund your child’s college education or build your retirement fund.

I can think of other benefits, but I’m sure a Sun Life financial advisor will be able to better explain it to you. If you think you can benefit from a VUL, try consulting with an advisor. It’s free anyway. In my experience, they didn’t try to upsell me; they looked at my monthly income and my expenses and came up with something that will not be too burdensome for me. All I can say is if you want to protect your loved ones, you need to look into this.

If you’re from Davao and want to consult a Sun Life financial advisor (not all agents are made the same — there are inactive/lazy/unknowledgeable ones who just want to make a sale), send me a message or leave a comment and I’ll give you my advisor’s number.

Personal

Turning 27 and Getting Schooled by Life

The last time I blogged, which was one day before my birthday, I was in a pretty melancholic mood. Things did turn around for the better, as expected, but at that time, I just didn’t have the energy or the motivation to feel upbeat. All I wanted to do was accept that I was being miserable because nothing was going my way.

But as I said, things did turn up for the better. I’m feeling a lot happier right now despite things not being 100% awesome. My smile is back.

Job and I eventually made up — he broke the ice and sent me a message first, but I admit I would’ve sent him the first message if he didn’t already. Knowing him, though, I know hindi niya ako kayang tiisin charot. He also doesn’t have any choice because it’s my birthday, just kidding 😛 In my defense, I really didn’t do anything wrong and was unfairly accused.

My best friend George and I also made up. We didn’t really fight but like some of you pointed out, I was really nagtatampo because of our cancelled birthday date. I wasn’t really mad but was just feeling frustrated, and now I’m totally over it.

Things are finally going my way… NOT!

It was my birthday yesterday, and I had a simple celebration. Why is it that the older you get, the less grand your birthday needs to be? Or is it just me? I just made cheesecake, bought some food, and celebrated at home and at the hotel. You see, early last year, I chanced upon a promo for Go Hotels Davao, which was not yet open at that time. They had an P88/night promo for their opening (which is this year), and I quickly availed. Nothing to lose!

I’m glad to report that my stay at the hotel is uneventful so far (except for the fact that the hotel internet is down right now).

So what is not going my way?

1. The bank fiasco

Guess who’s celebrating her birthday penniless? Me! Imagine my shock, waking up on my birthday, and finding out that BPI has basically shut down operations. My salary is in my BPI account and I haven’t had time to withdraw it. On top of that, I haven’t paid the bills yet and my Sun Life VUL. Gaaah BPI!

(I was able to pay my Sun Life VUL earlier using some of the savings I have with me. Whew.)

Lesson:

Always be ready and always have a backup plan.

2. When the tables are turned

Also, I have another date with another friend, Yankee, this weekend. And due to some unforeseen events, it needs to be cancelled, too. This time, it’s me who needs to cancel! Oh, the irony!

This was a really humbling experience for me. When it was me who had to experience getting “left at the altar” (exagg), I felt very disappointed and hurt. I did not talk to my best friend for a day because of that. However, now that it was my turn to cancel a date which I knew Yankee really looked forward to (and needed!), she felt hurt and sad but she forgave me right away. She also needed to move appointments to accommodate me, but she didn’t blame me for it. I wish I did the same.

Lesson:

Always forgive. 

3. Saying goodbye to a friend

And on a more serious note, I found out that one of my dearest friends from my office-girl days, Kristine, passed away earlier today. Just a day after my birthday. We were almost the same age, so to say I was shocked is a sore understatement. I knew she was ill, but I thought she was coping well. I never imagined that she would die so young. 🙁

I always think of her from time to time because I admire her strength. She had a chronic illness which attacked her internal organs, and she had to miss work regularly to get long treatments at the hospital. But not once did I hear her complain. In fact, she’s a very lovely, brave, caring girl who didn’t want special treatment just because of her condition. In fact, only a few of us knew about her illness.

Kristine is wearing bold yellow stripes, me on her left

There was a time when I randomly sent her a message because I just happened to think of her. Actually, I read an article about her illness, which made me admire her even more. The last time we chatted was when I was in Manila. We weren’t able to meet up because I didn’t know she was in BGC when we went to BGC, so we just ended up chatting. How I wish we were able to meet for the last time.

Lesson:

Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.

Personal

It’s Okay to Not Be Okay Sometimes

I’m your poster cheerful girl. I pride myself on always looking at the bright side of any situation. I have a permanent laugh line embedded into my cheeks.

Of course there are not-so-happy moments, like health scares and relationship conflicts, financial troubles and work-related stress, but I don’t really like dwelling on them. I get affected by them easily, but just as quickly as I get affected, I like moving on right away. I tend to dismiss them and just focus on the positive. Always focusing on the positive is a good thing, I was told. After all, we don’t like feeling sad — at least, don’t! I like feeling bright and happy and healthy and sunshiny.

Well, most of the time.

This week is an anomaly. Ironically, it’s my birth-week, too, but somehow, everything is just going wrong. Not really everything, but you know what I mean. It sounds terribly shallow because I know I have it a lot better than so many people in the planet. But there’s just something so miserable about a supposedly happy week gone awry.

First, I missed my own birthday outing. My family and our neighbours and I were supposed to go out of town, but it got cancelled because of the Martial Law. So they decided to go somewhere nearer instead, just so we could celebrate my and one of our neighbours’ late husband’s birthdays. Unfortunately, we couldn’t decide on a date. They wanted to have it this Saturday, 10th, but I vetoed because I already had a prior commitment with my friends on that day.

So they moved it to last Sunday, 4th. It was okay for me, but another date popped up, that with my fraternity/ sorority brods and sis (yes, just one lol). I prioritised the latter because it’s been 7+ years since I last saw them. In short, I had to miss my own birthday outing lol. I don’t regret it, however, because I had so much fun with my brods and sis. During that day, I realised just how much I missed them. Then again, it would have been doubly better if I was able to attend both,

Second, Job and I haven’t been speaking for *counts fingers* three days now, going on our fourth day tomorrow. I don’t want to give details about our fight, because our fights — if you could even call them that — are usually petty, but not this one. To make the long story short, I told him I’m not talking to him because I need time to process the issue. After a couple of days of sending me messages and not receiving a response, he gave up and now he’s the one not talking to me. LDR is hard, people.

Third, my friends cancelled out on me for our date on Friday-Saturday, the exact reason why I requested to re-schedule our outing (see item 1). In short, I missed out on my birthday celebration with my family and neighbours, for absolutely no reason at all… I know it’s not their fault, but I can’t help but feel bad because it’s just so so frustrating. Also, I admit, it stings a bit to be the one who has to adjust, especially when it’s my own birthday celebration.

On top of that, the cheesecake I was just making earlier is not the right consistency. *gives up*

Like I said, usually, I would choose to not dwell the bad things and focus on the bright side instead. But this time, I decided to just admit that I am sad, that I am not okay. There’s no use trying to feign positivity if it’s not even remotely genuine. I know things will turn out for the better soon, but currently, it’s my birthday week and it’s not looking good. And yeah, maybe that’s fine. I will still look out for the blessings and reasons to be grateful because I know there are a lot, but right now, I just don’t feel 100% happy… and I think it’s okay.

Sponsored

Start Strong in School with Mott’s

Mott’s Apple Juice is my favorite brand of apple juice. I have been buying it ever since Yuri was old enough to drink juice (I think around his 8th month mark?). I used to dilute it with water when he was a baby, and when he grew older, just the juice straight from the bottle. I never had any hesitations with Mott’s because it’s 100% apple juice — no sugar or any sweetener added — plus the fact that it’s chock-full of Vitamin C doesn’t hurt! Now that Yuri’s going to enter school, I’m planning to still give him Mott’s 100% Apple Juice for his breakfast and baon.

Which is why this package as a sweet surprised that arrived at the perfect timing.

We all want what is best for our kids, and Mott’s has a word for us this back-to-school season!


In a few weeks, the kids are going back to school. This is always a most exciting time for families. Waking up the kids on time, getting them to eat breakfast, and hurrying them along before the school bell rings — these morning routines are some of the most rousing that most families will ever encounter.

Parents naturally want their children to start strong in school, so they’d like to give them all they need to have the best preparation possible. Tomorrow starts with what you do today. For your kids to start strong, parents should help them develop the right habits today. They can start by establishing daily routines to get their kids into the swing of things like eating breakfast at eight, watering the garden at nine, and squeezing in some reading at ten. These routines will prepare their children for the everyday schedule they’d eventually encounter in school.

Parents would also like to place their kids’ sleeping routine down pat. A comforting bedtime routine may include a shower, a change of clothes, a reading of the kids’ favorite fairy tale, a prayer, and a good night kiss. These would make going to bed an inviting routine after a day full of adventures.

But the most important preparation for school may yet be a hearty breakfast. A good breakfast will give children the right amount of fuel to start strong in school. They’ll not only have the mental energy to go through complicated lessons, they’ll also have the positive vibes to make new friends. They will also feel less anxious about the whole back to school experience.

What makes for a hearty breakfast? The great news is that there are a lot of breakfast choices for the family’s nourishment and enjoyment. The traditional Filipino breakfast calls for fried bangus or tocino paired with garlic rice and sunny side eggs on the side. Other choices include pancakes and bacon, oatmeal or cereals with fruits, bread and eggs, and arroz caldo with tokwa’t baboy.

All these choices are best paired with the nutritious goodness of Mott’s 100% Apple Juice. The #1 brand of apple juice in the United States (source: IRI, Calendar YE 12.25.16), it is great tasting nutrition that children can enjoy for breakfast as it consists of 100% real fruit goodness with added Vitamin C. Mothers can trust that they are only giving the best to their children as Mott’s 100% Apple Juice doesn’t contain any artificial flavors, colors, or sweeteners. By giving Mott’s 100% Apple Juice for breakfast, the little ones get a strong start to live every day to its fullest.

Mott’s 100% Apple Juice not only comes in 32-ounce & 64-ounce PET bottle for sharing with the family, it is also available in a convenient can that the kids can slip in their lunch box. Children can then enjoy 100% apple goodness in school as well.

Follow Mott’s at https://www.facebook.com/MottsPh/
#MottsPh #StartStrong

This post is sponsored by Mott’s Philippines
School Shopping

Unique Back to School Finds at Gaisano Mall’s Grocery!

I know I’ve been mentioning Gaisano Mall a lot nowadays, and no I’m not paid to do it. It’s just my current favourite grocery at the moment! One of my absolute favourite things to do, which I may or may not be proud of, is to grocery shop, so I’m bound to have flavours of the month. Sometimes it’s SM, sometimes it’s S&R, right now it’s GMall!

The school year is about to start and I am not yet done with shopping. To complete my back to school shopping, aside from the usual bookstores and online shops and department stores, I’m planning to check out GMall’s grocery (again) because I spotted unique finds that I was not able to find anywhere else.

Like Pop-Tarts, Yuri’s current favourite hehe

Here are pictures of what caught my eye! (Forgive me for the poor quality; I was trying to be discreet as I was not sure whether taking pictures was allowed!) Continue Reading

Product Review

My New Favourite Brand of Talc-Free Powder: Belo Baby! (Giveaway Inside!)

Belo Baby Talc-Free Powder

I’ve been using talc-free powder ever since Yuri was a baby.

In fact, I don’t remember the last time I bought normal talc powder. I refuse to use it mainly because of the health risks that it poses. There is just no way I’m going to gamble. No thanks, I’d rather have peace of mind, thank you!

Over the years (Yuri is five now!), I have used a variety of non-talc powders and particularly favoured rice powder; however, they are not exactly easy to find, especially here in Davao City. Would you believe that just a few weeks ago, I was stressing over this because I’m already almost out of supply and I can’t find rice powder anywhere? I know it’s such a mundane thing to get stressed about, but if you’re also a mother, you would know just how important powder is in our kid’s daily lives. So running out of rice powder is a bit of a tough time.

Well, that was before I discovered that one of my favourite baby brands, Belo Babynow includes talc-free powder in their awesome line of products!

What a relief! You see, Belo Baby is not a foreign brand in our household. I have used a lot of their products: from soap to lotion to cologne. Even though Yuri is technically not a baby anymore (or so he insists!), I am still fond of using Belo Baby products because they smell nice — the scent does not attack my perpetual allergic rhinitis-ridden nose hehe — and are gentle enough to use on tender skin. Most importantly, they do the job they’re supposed to do!

So when Belo Baby contacted me to try out their new Talc-Free Powder just when I was running out of powder, I felt like it was an answered prayer. Of course I said yes! And now I will tell you why you should try it, too, whether you’re already using talc-free powder or not.

Belo Baby Talc-Free Powder

Belo Baby Talc-Free Powder is a gentle powder that’s made with zero talc and provides all-natural protection from diaper rash. It is made from certified natural and finely milled rice and maize that absorb moisture to keep baby’s skin soft, fresh and dry. It is also carefully formulated without talc, gluten, phthalates, parabens, dyes, and most common allergens, which I love because I’m careful to avoid all of these harsh ingredients. 

Belo Baby Talc-Free Powder

#BeloBaby, after all, is rafted with care for the most delicate skin, for the most meticulous moms. Unsurprisingly, Belo Baby Talc-Free Powder is the only powder Baby Scarlet Snow trusts!

And we all know children don’t really outgrow powder, so aside from diaper rash, you and your entire family can absolutely use Belo Baby to suit any purpose!

My Experience

The first thing that came to my mind when I received the Belo Baby Talc-Free Powder was its pretty packaging! I absolutely loved how it looked like, but just when I thought there’s no way it could get better, I opened the container and saw the cutest soft puff. Our old brand doesn’t have a puff, and talc-free powder tends to spill over due to its lightness, so being able to use it with a puff is a brilliant idea!

Belo Baby Talc-Free PowderBelo Baby Talc-Free Powder

Yuri and I immediately used it, and I am pleased to report that it comes with a pleasant scent that is not overpowering, just refreshing.

Not our most glamorous picture, but that’s how we really look at home haha

And speaking of refreshing, it does the job of freshening up my super active 5-year old easily! I use it on Yuri every afternoon after his daily bikes and playing…

I also used it when we went out of town yesterday to go swimming…

And I use it every time we go out so Yuri — and I — smell fresh and sweet!

I like that I don’t have to use up a lot of powder; a dab here and there is enough. I don’t know why, but I don’t like putting a lot of product on the skin. I find that with really effective products, such as this one, there is no need to slather much.

Then again, you can play with more powder if you want to because it doesn’t contain harmful ingredients! After days of using it, I didn’t notice any adverse effect on Yuri’s skin. I’m totally buying this again and again!

If you’re not using talc-free powder, you should switch because:

  1. There’s a lot of health risks involved when using talc, including cancer.
  2. Talc is easily inhaled and may cause respiratory issues and lung irritation.
  3. Common side effects of talc powder use include vomiting and low blood pressure.
  4. In fact, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends against using talc powder.
  • As indicated by the American Cancer Society, it is not clear if products containing talc does increase cancer risk. Studies have had mixed results, although there is some suggestion of a possible increase in ovarian cancer risk. As long as there is mixed information, I’ll err on the side of caution.

If you’re already using talc-free powder, you should switch to Belo Baby because:

  1. It is meticulously made by a leading baby product brand with excellent track record.
  2. It is widely available in all leading supermarkets and department stores nationwide.
  3. It is all-natural with zero harmful chemicals.
  4. It comes with a puff that makes it easier to apply the powder and, at the same time, prevents you from using too much of the product.
  5. It is hypoallergenic and dermatologist-tested.
  6. The packaging just looks super cute!

It’s Giveaway Time!

Belo Baby Talc-Free Powder

Belo Baby and I are giving Belo Baby Talc-Free Powder gift packs to three lucky readers! Each gift pack is worth at least P659.25, shipping is on us. I think this is perfect because the school year is about to start. Simply follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter form below — easy as pie!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

(You must have a valid Philippine address to join.)

Winners will be announced on May 31st.

UPDATE

Winners already drawn and will be contacted via email.


Belo Baby Talc-free Powder is now available in leading supermarkets and department stores nationwide.

You can also buy now here: https://tackthis.co/shop/Belo/category/belo-baby and enjoy FREE delivery until May 31 with a minimum purchase.

Be updated with the latest Belo Baby products by checking their website www.belobaby.ph, Facebook page belobabylove, Twitter @belobabylove, and Instagram @belobabylove.

Blogger disclosure: This post is sponsored by Belo Baby. I received compensation for this article, but the review is 100% mine.
Kindergarten School

Eating My Words About Our Kindergarten Plans (AKA We’re Finally Enrolled)

I still remember explaining, quite adamantly, why I don’t want to enrol Yuri in my alma mater. 

I don’t have anything personal against the school. It’s just that it’s the school my older brother and I went to most of our lives (except college), and my younger sister, who is entering her final year of junior high school, is still going there. I just want to try something new, which is why I actively scouted for other schools earlier this summer. The school has to fulfil my small criteria, and it shouldn’t be my alma mater.

Well ha ha ha.

Life has a funny way of making you eat your words, lol. A month ago — I just forgot to write a post about it — a week after I had Yuri take an entrance exam at Holy Child, where despite scoring well, we were waitlisted because they were prioritising old students, I irrationally panicked because what if no slot opens for Yuri? I know; it’s irrational. But staying true to my Type A-personality, I just needed a Plan B. Also, it was already the middle of April, not much time left (at least in my view). The other schools I wrote about I no longer considered, but there’s one school quietly waiting for my approval: the alma mater.

Thinking there was nothing to lose, I scheduled Yuri for another entrance test in ze alma mater. My original plan was to compare which school Yuri likes better. I was still planning to phone Holy Child for a follow up if a slot opens up.

Then, this happened and we lost our helper

A little backgrounder for those not familiar with my story: Yuri and I live in my parents’ house while Job works abroad for a couple of reasons. First, Job is not comfortable with the idea of Yuri and me living alone. Second, my dad is a dialysis patient, my mother is out everyday working, and my tween sister is still too young to take care of my dad if ever the need arises.

Back to the topic. Our helper, because of reasons, left, so we’re back to being help-less again. Our household will not fall apart in the absence of a helper, of course, but it was nice to know there’s an extra pair of hands around especially now that Yuri will be going to school. I built plans considering those extra hands, so when they left, I needed to amend the plan.

Bottom line: to make our lives easier, the most ideal thing to do right now is enrol Yuri in the same school my sister goes. Our routines would be much more streamlined, academic and extra-curricular schedules will be aligned, and in the unlikely event that I won’t be able to go to Yuri right away,  at least my sister is just there in the same campus. It just made perfect sense, and four weeks ago, Yuri was finally enrolled.

Right now, even though I’m sure I will still shop around for another school next academic year, I’m completely content with the final decision (Yuri doesn’t seem to mind either way). I’m just focusing on the most exciting task at hand: completing the boy’s school supplies. LOL!

Lifestyle Mixed Mess Shopping

Dental Appointment + Outfit Twinning + School Supplies Shopping

Happy mother’s day! Personally, even though I’m a mama myself, I don’t really celebrate mother’s day. However, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it either. So if it empowers you as a mother, go ahead and celebrate your being awesome!

Dental Appointment

Last weekend was another full weekend for me. Saturday was Yuri’s and my sister’s dental appointment. My sister had her teeth “molded” in plaster in preparation for her braces. Her teeth were overlapping so she needs to have them fixed.

Yuri was also scheduled for a check-up. Good news is that unlike last year, where he didn’t even want to sit on the chair by himself, now he did it willingly and without any prodding.

The bad news is that some of his molars had decay (this, despite brushing his teeth 2-3 times a day — sugar is the culprit, as usual) and our dentist recommended filling them in. Yikes! Yes, we are serious about dental hygiene, but Yuri does eat a lot of bread and pasta and sweets. So there. Also, I’m also suspecting Yuri’s current toothpaste, but it’s just a suspicion not to be taken seriously lels.

Dentist’s tip: Even if your oral hygiene is great, if you eat a lot of carbs and sugar in between brushing, you’re still at risk of getting cavities. In her words, it’s not just how often you brush your teeth but what you eat in between. So limit carbs and sugar! 

As we all know, filling requires taking out the decaying part of the tooth by “grinding” them. She told me she will have to refer me to a pediatric dentist because most boys Yuri’s age don’t cooperate and need to be sedated. I wasn’t comfortable with the idea of sedation, and I think our dentist (she’s been our dentist since I was a toddler) noticed that, so she asked me if I would like her to try filling just one tooth. I agreed, of course. I’m much more comfortable with her compared to a new dentist.

“Grinding” hehe

Yay yay yay! Yuri did not only fully cooperate but also didn’t even cry. Thank you, Lord! He flinched at the first touch of the “grinder” but didn’t move away from it or complain. When Doc was done, he even gave her a thumbs-up sign. We could’ve proceeded with another tooth but there was another patient waiting so we’ll return next week. Hopefully everything will be finished before the school year starts.

Tired from the appointment? Hahaha

Outfit Twinning with Yuri!

I may not necessarily celebrate Mother’s Day but that doesn’t mean I won’t dress up for it! My close friend, JM, sells twinning outfits for mothers and daughters, but occasionally, she sells mom and son outfits. When one came out in Yuri’s size, I just had to get it.

Dress from Mommy Trends, old cardigan, old Coach bag, Crocs flats
Yuri: Shirt from Mommy Trends, Oshkosh shorts, Converse sneakers

Wow I miss doing an OOTD! I rarely have OOTD photos taken nowadays because I feel insecure about how I currently look lol but I just can’t help it with this outfit. I find it so cute! I love that it’s not tacky (in fact, you will need to be really observant to notice that our outfits match) but they look good together.

It’s in the details

And I’m not just saying this because JM is my friend. I really love the clothes and I love how I look in it haha!

School Supplies Shopping

Why is it that the younger the student is, the longer the list of supplies?! Yuri’s requirement list, which we got from school after we enrolled (which reminds me — I forgot to write a post about it!), is an entire bond paper filled with names of supplies. And that’s just the basics.

I wasn’t planning to buy school supplies earlier because I wanted to set a date for it to get everything done. However, at Gaisano Mall (we like going to Gaisano Mall now because the Pop-Tarts are there haha), I saw that the entire atrium was turned into a school supply fair. While I love National Bookstore, the prices are lower in GMall. For example, a box of Crayola So-Big in NBS is like P110; there, an exact same box is just P88. Elmer’s Glue is P25 for 50 ml; there it’s just P19. A big difference considering my tendency to hoard, and the fair is right there in front of me, so I decided to just buy whatever I could buy.

There were also socks, underwear, uniforms, bags, lunch boxes and bags, even hygiene stuff. Virtually everything a student’s going to need for school. So I bought na what I can buy. 

Just a feeeewwww of what I bought. I didn’t take a picture of the entire haul anymore because it’s just boring academic stuff lels

I was personally curious about the lesson plan notebooks and the So Big Crayolas. They’re required to use lesson plan notebooks (with blue and red lines), and I saw K-12 ones from DepEd itself. So maybe it’s also a requirement in other schools? I don’t know. I do remember that when I was in Grade 1, we used lesson plan notebooks, too.

Yuri has never used So Big crayons. When he was about 2, I bought him toddler crayons that he rarely used since our old crazy yaya misplaced them. I saw them again just last year and they’re still unused. Yuri has always used regular crayons and never had a problem using them even when he didn’t know how to hold a pencil. So it came to me as a surprise that his school is requiring So Big crayons. I thought they were for nursery students or something. I didn’t know Senior Kindergarteners were also using them. Will the teacher allow Yuri to use regular crayons if he finds these jumbo ones too uncomfortable to use? Hmmm….

There were some items on my list that I didn’t find there but at least I’m already more than halfway done with school shopping. Woot woot!

How did you spend your weekend, mommies?

Lifestyle Messy Weekends Personal

Broker Duties, Lunch with Friends, and Discovering Where to Buy Pop-Tarts!

I had a full day last Saturday. It started quite early (at least for me, because I don’t usually get up early on Saturdays) at 9:00 am and, as usual, Yuri was with me the entire day. It seems like he has completely adopted to being out and about — he prefers it over being left at home.

Which is completely fine with me because Yuri is at this age where he can take care of himself (most of the time) and he can even help around (with tiny tasks like getting himself a cup of water). Also, the boy tends to be silly so he’s very welcome company!

Real Estate Broker Duties

In the morning, we went to the Open House event of this new subdivision called Diamond Heights. They’re relatively new but their houses are selling literally like pancakes. It happened that they also started accepting reservations during the Open House event so it was literally a full-house. There were a lot of brokers and clients there.

With the brother of our client (the client works in Dubai)

We went there early but were already 13th in the registration form. It was a bit stressful because our client wants a corner lot, and there were only a handful of corner lots being opened for reservation! Thank goodness we were still included in the first 10 buyers because our client was already there with us. Because of this, our client enjoyed a nice promo and was able to choose a good corner location.

Lunch with my Soul Sisters

We don’t really plan it, but it seems like meeting with my closest friends since college happens once a month. This time, there were only three of us because JM is busy organising a wedding in Kidapawan City while Christine is still in Japan. It’s easiest for Hazel, George, and I to meet up because we just live in Davao City.

Red Corner, Gaisano Mall branch

Yuri and his tita-girlfriend, Hazel

This time, we decided to have lunch in Red Corner. I already wrote a review of it last year, and it’s pretty much the same, except for the branch. While it was in their Mabini branch last time, this time, I was able to eat at their newly opened branch in Gaisano Mall.

Cookies and cream milkshake

Cheese fries

Golden Boy burger

Food was pretty much the same. This time, though, I just ordered a regular burger (Golden Boy) for Yuri and me because we already ate at the Open House event. The bread still tastes good and the patty just as juicy. I just wasn’t totally crazy over it this time, probably because I wasn’t very hungry.

Taken by Hazel

We also had coffee (I had matcha) at Little Dorothy Cafe, which has the same owner as Cafe Annabelle’s.

Hazel, George, and me (grabbed from Hazel’s cam because all the pictures on mine are the crazy ones)

Grocery Shopping with Yuri!

When we were in college, a meet-up or even just a regular hang-out entailed long hours of partying and drinking and whatever we wanted to do. Because we are all adults now, a meet-up just means 2-3 hours of eating, drinking coffee, and chit chat. After that, we need to part ways to take care of our respective responsibilities lololol.

Upon parting ways with Hazel and George, Yuri and I proceeded to do our (my) favourite chore: grocery shopping! I don’t know what it is with grocery shopping that makes me feel so euphoric. Shopping for clothes and even bags doesn’t even feel remotely the same. If you want to boost my mood, bring me to a grocery store.

Somebody please take a decent picture of us…

I especially like doing groceries at Gaisano Mall because they have everything. I love SM, but it is GMall’s grocery that has everything (okay, maybe except the shoes and clothes). In fact, one of the reasons why it took me long to get an S&R membership is because I can pretty much buy a lot of US goods in Gaisano Mall anyway. I get it that S&R has its own perks, but in a pinch, I would choose to shop at GMall’s grocery. They’re a lot cheaper most of the time!

(It’s a pity it is so difficult to park at Gaisano Mall, though!)

Yuri and I took our sweet time (pun not intended) browsing the snack aisles. My 5-year old was particularly delighted because we discovered they’re already selling Pop Tarts! In single packs! You see, I don’t like buying a whole box of Pop Tarts because it’s pretty expensive for just a snack — not to mention it’s not good for Yuri anyway.

Pop-taaaarts!

We (or was it just I?) also had an awesome time looking for things Yuri can use for school. We already have a list of requirements, but we’re not going to buy all of them until next week. Still, it was fun “canvassing.” I even bought Yuri a lunch box because it was priced at 50% off. It was a Biokips lunch box. I was originally looking at the Lock and Lock ones, but Yuri wanted the Biokips better. I don’t know why; they look the same to me. But I bought it anyway since Yuri likes it and it’s on 50% discount. Not bad!

Plus, I may or may not have bought a few bento tools to go with it.

Obviously, I had so much fun at the grocery store last Saturday hahaha. I took a lot of pictures so stay tuned for my next post about the School Finds that piqued my curiosity at GMall!

Summer Summer Destinations Travel

A Summer Day Trip to Mati + Lupon

Three weeks ago, on Black Saturday, we went on a day tour to Davao Oriental. It was a semi-spur of the moment decision since it was just mentioned during Good Friday when a good neighbour of ours invited us to her hometown, Lupon. She was in charge of her town’s salubong so a number of our other neighbours were going to help. We didn’t have anything planned for Holy Week-end so we decided to go on a day trip.

Also, I haven’t been to Mati yet, and it’s a booming tourist destination, so I was excited!

Nope, we weren’t cramped into the back seat all the time. When we started driving, Yuri transferred to the second row with his grandparents. My sister and I commonly take the third row seat when the car is a full-house.

The municipality of Lupon is around a 3-hour drive from our home in Davao City. However, we got there early and our neighbour didn’t even arrive yet, so we decided to go to Mati City first, which is another 30-40 minute trip.

Mati

Sleeping Dinosaur

Mati Baywalk

Continue Reading

Mixed Mess Parenting Personal

Last Day at Eye Level + Nighttime Toilet Training

This post has been sitting in my… wait for it… drafts for way too long!

It’s been terribly hot this summer — where’s my summer breeze to make me feel fine? — but just last night, we had a strong thunderstorm. It was the same as the thunderstorm we had a couple of Saturdays ago where our electricity even got cut off for 5 hours.  And for the first time ever, our home office flooded (a little bit). Thank God it occurred to me to check the office just when the leaking started. (God has been giving me small reminders lately that went on to reveal bigger things. Thank you, Lord!)

I actually meant to post this almost a full month ago. For time reference, Yuri’s last day at Eye Level was on April 8th, and he got fully nighttime toilet-trained on April 13th.

Last Day at Eye Level

There’s nothing about Eye Level that both Yuri and I don’t love. Honest. I already made a proclamation of love here so I won’t go into details anymore. I just want to say that Yuri entered the enrichment centre literally illiterate (does that make sense? haha). Seriously. He just turned four then and before that, I didn’t think it was important to pressure him into learning how to read and write. After all, he wouldn’t be three forever.

(I have nothing against parents whose children were taught to read and write earlier. Different families, different priorities.)

By the time he turned four, though, I knew our time was up: he needed to learn how to read and write. When I enrolled Yuri to Eye Level’s English program May of 2016, he didn’t even know how to hold a pencil. After assessing him, we started at a pre-literacy level, where we even struggled with writing lines! I loved teaching Yuri, but for some reason, teaching him how to draw straight lines, crooked lines, and curves brought me at my wit’s end.

But after persevering, both in the centre and at home, suddenly Yuri was zooming through writing letters. We had to learn the correct strokes (I was lax at first but later learned to abide by the rules — penmanship does matter). At first, he got B’s and C’s on his booklets, but later on, they became all A’s. After several months, he was already on to reading and forming simple words.

From not knowing how to hold a pencil, he’s already writing and reading and spelling words.I know this is in no way an extraordinary feat, but for us, who started the year illiterate, this was amazing progress. And I credit much of it to Eye Level. The one-on-one hands-on sessions as well as the engaging activities and exercises helped a lot. 

Last day at Eye Level today 😭#sepanx

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However, Job and I, even though we are 101% satisfied with Eye Level, decided to pull Yuri out after 10 months of being with the learning centre. This is plainly because Yuri is about to enter formal schooling for the very first time in his life. We felt like we all needed a break from any sort of pressure and just focus on resting and transitioning to school life this summer. We didn’t even enrol him to any summer class this year. I also want Yuri to be able to focus on schooling alone when it starts. By the time he adjusts to our new routines, we may come back to Eye Level. This time, we will be going for Math instead of English. Who knows?

Nighttime Toilet Training Saga

My mother has been nagging me about this for so long. You see, even though Yuri got successfully potty-trained before he turned 2, he has still been wearing pull-ups at night. I don’t know; I just felt like he wasn’t ready yet. Each morning, he wakes up with a full pull-up and he does pee a lot at night. In the early days, I tried having him wear his cloth diapers at night. But barely an hour into sleep, he wakes up because it’s already full of pee. So I just shrugged nighttime toilet training off and waited until he was ready.

I knew he was ready a couple of weeks before he turned five. He still wakes up with a wet pull-up but that’s because he pees upon waking up. It’s also the perfect timing because it’s summer and he pees a lot less during the summer. But then, we travelled and I felt like it wasn’t the best time to toilet train. We were sleeping in a hotel room on a hotel bed, after all! I just didn’t want to risk it.

Heels over head 😂

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When we got back from our vacation, I waited for the next long weekend to come. It happened to be the weekend of the Holy Week. Our first night of no-pull ups happened on the night of Maundy Thursday. I just followed the basic pieces of advice: not giving too much liquid at night and peeing before bedtime. That’s it.

And it was a success! I didn’t get to sleep much that night, though. I was so paranoid he would wet the bed so I kept waking up to check. Nonetheless, he woke up with the bed fully dry and the first thing he did was pee. Teehee. It really does make a difference to wait until the child is ready.


My takeaway from this mothering experience? There’s no competition when it comes to nighttime toilet training. After all, it’s a bodily function that is not easily controllable. We might have used up more pull ups than kids who got toilet trained earlier, but it’s okay. There’s no use pressuring a child who just couldn’t keep his bed dry because he can’t help it. Because I decided to wait until I was sure Yuri was ready, he didn’t have to feel pressured or frustrated. Because we waited, nighttime toilet training for us was super easy, stress-free, and tear-free!

Actually, come to think of it, this can be applied to teaching literacy, too! In other words, raising a child shouldn’t be a competition.

Lifestyle My Christian Walk Personal

Refreshed, Recharged, Re-energised!

I can say that I already 100% recovered from the theft that I discovered just last week.

I credit a huge part of the “recovery” to Job, who has always been there to rescue me. Nope, he did not catch the thief for me. After all, I refused to file a police report against the maid because of personal reasons and because it would be totally unfair to her if the thief turned out to be someone else. I am aware that the chances of it not being her is really slim, but there’s still a chance to consider.

How can I explain this… Let’s just say I did not want to risk it because I’ve been to her home, and I saw how dire her living conditions were. The farmers in remote areas that I have visited and stayed with in the past lived in better conditions that she did. Some of you might be shaking your heads at me right now, but I know I wouldn’t be able to forgive myself if her story turned out to be true. I might have lost a considerable amount of money, but I know it will come back to me in the form of blessings and provisions. Whoever the thief is, I leave his or her fate to God.

So where does Job come in here? I already mentioned that he will be replacing the money that I had lost, but more than that, it’s his simple assurance that he will always be there to come to my rescue. It doesn’t mean that I need to be rescued, nor does it mean that I am someone who cannot take care of herself. It’s the simple fact that there is someone who looks out for me and prays for my well-being, someone who cannot stand the thought of me bothered over little things like money, and someone who shines God’s light for me every single day.

When I was down and deflated, he reminded me of God’s promises — and also reminded me that I’ve been through things that were a lot worse and will probably go through bad things again. It’s just how life is, and our God’s faithfulness will see us through.

A Quick Getaway to Clear the Mind

While God and Job helped me get over this “minor” problem, it was this holiday weekend’s trip that really made me forget all about it. Buda (Bukidnon-Davao road) will always be one of my favourite places to go to, because despite it being still technically inside Davao City (even after 2-3 hours of travel), it always makes me feel like I’m away from the rest of the world.

Credits to The Life Chaser for this beautiful picture of Buda Road

Amazingly, there was cell signal in the rest house that we stayed in. I was pleasantly surprised because we didn’t have signal at all in Jive Resort before. However, getting data connection was difficult. I only captured enough data signal to post a signal photo, and then after that, nothing. Everyone spent the weekend without an internet connection, and it worked really well because nobody was glued to his or her phone. There was also a TV but we didn’t even need to plug it in. Everyone just spent time together through laughter and jokes, eating, sharing stories, walking, swimming, and just resting. Real rest — without a screen involved.

I also realised one thing. If I was able to spend an entire weekend without even thinking about Facebook, that means I could spend a whole less time on social media and spend it on more meaningful things instead. I am planning to reduce my time on Facebook and only go online (after work) to talk to Job or post a blog or do something of equal importance. Oh, the wonders unplugging does!

Also, the fact that the climate there is cold all year round while it is smoking hot in the city helps. A lot. Hehehe

Fog! Sorry for this crappy picture. Remind me to sit in the front seat next time 😛

I spent the long weekend in a Buda rest house with my family and our neighbours, and I felt my stress melt away. It wasn’t a particularly stressful time at work (both as an operations manager and a real estate broker), and I didn’t have a lot of personal problems, so the weight I was carrying was solely the theft’s. Still, I knew I needed a getaway and a quick recharge, and well, the weekend at cold, reliable Buda did the trick!

I just came home this afternoon and haven’t prepared pictures, so even if I want to blog about the trip and recommend the rest house right now, I won’t be able to do so. Not that I have taken a lot of pictures — we were wet half the time so I barely had time to hold a phone! Also, I haven’t even blogged about our day trip to Davao Oriental during the Holy Week-end yet, so I don’t really have a right to be blogging about my Buda trip lololol! But stay tuned for both blog posts, please!

What do you do to recharge?

*Featured picture from Choose Philippines