Showing posts with label Features. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Features. Show all posts

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Phil the Fil-Am: The Way to Teach Kids About Filipino Language and Culture

I have noticed that many Filipino-American children don't know how to speak Filipino or Tagalog. It's a sad reality. Why is this happening? I've heard from friends of friends that they believe that teaching their kids their mother tongue would cause confusion and non-mastery of the second language, English. They're so afraid that their kids would not be able to cope up when they socialize with their English speaking friends.

I also heard stories that parents were not able to teach their kids to speak Filipino due to their very busy schedule. They were already adapted and used to speak in English outside and inside their homes. 

I have cousins who were brought up in America since they were preschoolers but they were taught how to speak and understand Filipino. When they went here in the Philippines for a visit, they tried their best to communicate with us in our mother tongue. What our aunts and uncles did was they were obliged to speak in Filipino at home and they were not allowed to speak in English at all. They were only allowed to speak in English when they were in school or at work. 

I'm so proud of them! They have shown that it's possible to be bilingual.

To validate the importance of learning the mother tongue, I came across with a very informative article written by Dr. Josebelo Chong on his blog A Dugyot in the U.S.A. He wrote, "According to the American Speech Language Hearing Association (ASHA), there are various phenomena which can masquerade as deficit arising from bilingualism; however, the recommended approach is actually REINFORCEMENT of both languages (and cultures, as the case may be) and NOT EXCLUSION of one or the other.  Interestingly, it states that 'Children all over the world learn more than one language without developing speech or language problems'.  Bilingual children develop language skills just as other children do. A study done on German-English bilingual toddlers and published in the American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology in 2002 comes to the conclusion that 'early simultaneous acquisition of more than one language is not an inherent disadvantage for the child'."

Dr. Chong emphasized, "The truth is that teaching a second language can be BENEFICIAL. According to an article in the Linguistic Society of America's website, 'Some people worry that learning more than one language is bad for a child, but nothing could be further from the truth'. In fact, there are a lot of advantages to knowing more than one language.  They then go on to say that bilingualism can ENHANCE cognitive development, IMPROVE the development of a child's cultural identity, and ENCOURAGE cross-cultural awareness and understanding.", 

(See the full article here:

He also mentioned a link to the article "Second Language Protects Against Alzheimer's".  

Therefore, it doesn't cause confusion and it's not bad for individuals to learn more than one language.

Kids nowadays are luckier because they are exposed to multimedia. They can learn their mother tongue easily if only there's a show like "Dora the Explorer (who teaches kids to speak in Spanish and English)" in Filipino-English version.

This has been a dream of our kababayan in America, David Asis, who is currently creating a  trailer for Phil the Fil-Am, an English/Tagalog children's cartoon about Filipino culture and social/analytical skills.

David's parents were from the Philippines. He was born in America. His kids are Fil-Am also, but they know more Spanish and Chinese. They learn to speak the languages more than they do Tagalog or Filipino through watching Dora the Explorer and Ni Hao Kai Lan.

According to David, he is not saying that knowing about Spanish and Chinese culture is a bad thing, but he would  like his kids to learn about their own roots as well. That's why he is creating Phil the Fil-Am. It's his way of teaching his kids and all kids as well about Filipino culture in a format that they're familiar with.

The main character is named Phil and is modeled after David's son, Michael.  

He is currently fleshing out the other characters, such as his nephew, Benjie, in the Philippines, who will serve as the show's primary method for relaying life and culture in the Philippines.

To turn his dream to a reality, he has launched a Kickstarter project to raise funds to create a two-three minute trailer of Phil the Fil-Am. Phase One of creating this show will be used as a launchpad for future phases of development.  Phase Two will be to create a 22 minute Pilot episode, and Phase Three will be to create a 10 episode first season of the series. 80% of the goal funds will be used towards animation and music, while 10% will be used for art, script writing, story boarding, and voice talent, and the remaining 10% will be used promoting the series and miscellaneous expenses.

Here's a video to learn more about David's story and Phil the Fil-Am on Kickstarter:


I think it's great and all worth it to help David. All kids especially the ones who live abroad will benefit from it. It's also a way of us, Filipinos, to be known for our rich culture and heritage. You may go to THIS LINK to learn more about Phil the Fil-AM on Kickstarter or HERE to back this project for a minimum of $1.00 pledge. This project will only be funded if at least $2,500 is pledged by 5:14 PM Australian Western Standard Time (AWST). Sharing this on your own social media accounts can be a big help too. Your friends might be interested to pledge to make David's dream come true! Thank you so much!

You may also like Phil the Fil-Am's Official Facebook Page for more updates:

If you like what you just read please click to send a quick vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs- The best mommy blog directory featuring top mom bloggers

Sunday, February 16, 2014

The Culinary Revolution Now App-Sized! Modernist Cuisine at Home eBook Version Now Available!

Due to the demands of our work aside from being hands-on moms, we always find ways on how to make our lives easier. One of them is to look for recipes on cookbooks or through the internet that are not just healthy but very easy to prepare. 

I am a visual learner. I want recipes to be presented and illustrated in detail and in full-color like I do when I share recipes here on my blog. 

Illustrated and detailed recipes are readily available through the internet and it's the fastest way for us to get them. Sometimes, it takes time for us to surf the net due to intermittent connection or find the ones available in our onhand cookbooks vague because they are non-illustrated or written in highfalutin words. 

I am just wondering, what if there's no internet connection in case you need to find new recipes? What if you don't have a cookbook on hand? What if the recipes in your cookbooks are already prepared a couple of times and your family wants new dishes to try? What if the procedure in your cookbook is difficult to understand? What if you are not an inventive cook or worse, what if you don't know how to cook?
I am so glad that Miss Amelia Salyers or introduced to me Modernist Cuisine at Home eBook Version
 "This title has been called 'the most important cookbook in the first 10 years of the 21st century.' The hardcover version typically runs $140+. For the first time, Inkling’s offering it in digital form and we’re pretty excited about it!" , says Miss Amelia.

   There are 1,683 photos, 416 recipes,  37 technique videos, and countless new ways to dive in, with extras not found in print. High resolution photos including 359 new images unique to Inkling edition will make your eyes feast. Take note, each image is zoomable, so you can see every detail using your screen. Some images even include interactive elements that reveal the science behind different cooking techniques.

It helps you cook smarter, not harder. Finding a recipe for what you’ve got on hand, teaching you how to cook with step by step instructions, scaling recipes for however many guests you have: from planning to plating, the Inkling edition does just about everything but actually cook for you.

  It also has a yield converter that scales recipe ingredients instantly based on how many people you're cooking for. The amounts you need also get added to your Shopping List.

Reviews of Modernist Cuisine are tremendous! For Martha Stewart, "Modernist Cuisine at Home is destined to change the way we cook – and the way we use recipes. For all of us who cook regularly, this book opens up a whole new world of possibilities. It is full of insights that encourage us to try something new, and that teach us something on every single page."  For The Daily Meal, it as one of The 25 Best Cookbooks of the Year 2012. Also winner of the 2013 International Association of Culinary Professionals Award in the category of Food & Beverage  Reference/Technical, Gourmand World Cookbook Awards considered it a MASTERPIECE, the most important cookbook of the first ten years of the 21st century!

 This is just the tip of the iceberg! It's very enticing, isn't it? Do you want more?

To watch the teaser video and learn the detailed overview, experience, features, and free sample recipes, you may click THIS.

 By the way, Miss Amelia gave me this LINK to the great and easy PIZZA MARGHERITA recipe that is not part of the free chapter but available to the public that kids and adults tend to love! By also clicking the link you can experience the above-mentioned features of the Inkling version.

This cookbook is a definitely a must-have for us moms! It makes cooking more fun and easy! We can cook like a pro with this App!
To avail, you may download the app from the App Store for $79.99, or get these book directly from If you want a taste test, individual chapters are from $4.99. There’s even a free chapter that features everything you need to make a three-course Modernist meal. 

Photos and Information about Modernist Cuisine at Home courtesy of
Reviews about Modernist Cuisine courtesy of
Inkling Logo courtesy of

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Wash Away Mom’s Worries! Tiny Buds Bottle & Utensil Wash, Made from Food Safe Ingredients

Angeli Rose De Guzman and her two month-old son, Sebastian Al-Qasem
 Chemically tainted baby bottles?  Moms, especially those who work outside their homes and leave the care of their toddlers to yayas, need to be assured that when they go outside, baby bottles will not only be germ-free but also toxin-free! A shiny and seemingly clean bottle does not mean a safe bottle to use for babies. Commercial dishwashing liquid can make household utensils squeaky clean, however, the danger of traces of chemical residue left behind as a result of not thoroughly rinsing off baby bottles is always there.

The thought of the possibility of those harsh chemical mixing in the formula of your babies constantly worries mommies.

Wash away those worries by using Tiny Buds Bottle & Utensil Wash, made from food grade ingredients, thicker concentration and not  watery, comes in light  green apple scent  that cleans the bottles well and does not leave an unpleasant  smell on the nipple of baby bottle. It also guaranteed  Paraben-free, *SLS-free and is biodegradable and earth friendly.

Tiny Buds Bottle Wash comes in a slim capped bottles that takes up little storage space in the pantry. It can be dispensed in a bottle container with a safety cap; a special safety feature that shields away from crawling insects at night and other contaminants when left in the washing area.  A safety feature most mommies value and what's more, it also comes in a refillable pack.

More and more moms have discovered  the effectiveness and safety of Tiny Buds Bottle Wash.  For instance, Nurse is aware of the harmful effects of SLS such that when she found out about this new product, she immediately replaced her usual dishwashing detergent that she uses for the baby bottles of her almost 1-year old son, Sebastian Al-Qasem.

“I don’t want my baby to be exposed to SLS. That is why I use Tiny Buds Bottle Wash because it does not have SLS. Its lather is rich. At the same time, it does not have a strong smell like detergent,” she explains.

Other Tiny Buds products you should try are:
Rice Baby Powder is a premium quality baby powder made from 100% real rice grains. This biodegradable and hypo allergenic baby powder is completely free from harmful talc and other chemicals found in other commercial baby powder. It keeps the baby’s skin healthy fresh, moisturize and dry from perspiration.

Kid’s Hand Sanitizer Spray is made from food safe ingredients,  tough on harmful bacteria and gentle on skin. Comes in 3 exciting scents with aloe vera extract. It’s safe for kids, with less irritating alcohol smell compared to regular sanitizers.

Sticky Hand Wipes is gently formulated with chamomile and vitamin E to clean and moisturize baby’s skin. It is Paraben-free, alcohol-free and made of food safe ingredients.  It’s extra thick and silky soft for baby’s comfort.

Scratch Off! After-bite Cool Soothing Relief Gel-all natural ingredients which is eco-cert, best for kids and parents too. Gets the itch out in seconds.

In a Rash! Soothing Lite Cream for Baby Diaper Rashes - Made of eco-certified ingredients . See the redness out in minutes!

Tiny Fangs Natural Toothgel Stage 1 &2, a preparatory tooth gel for babies and kids free from Parabens and SLS free. Comes in Strawberry Banana Flavor without foam.
And Tutti Fruitti Flavour with lite mint and low foam formula.

For inquiries and free samples , please visit Tiny Buds Facebook Page:  

Tiny Buds Natural Baby Products are available at:  Selected Watson Stores., Mercury Drugstores, Baby Co stores, Rustan’s Department Store & Supermarkets Shopwise Supermarket, Robinson’s supermarket,  Babyland, Numa, Toys ‘R Us, Landmark, Unimart, Cash and Carry, Pioneer, Makati Supermarket, Metro Gaisano, Puregold Duty Free, Shoppers Mart, Waltermart, Bora Budget Mart, Sta. Lucia Mall,South Supermarket, Cherry Foodarama, Baby Steps, Citimart, LCC Supermarket, 360 Pharmacy, Gaisano Capital, Fooda Supermarket, Iloilo Supermarket, Gaisano Mall  of Davao, Alturas Supermarket & Department Store, LCC Department Store, HB1, NCCC, NCX, Ororama, & Lopue’s Department Store.  

*SLS (short for sodium lauryl sulfate) is a surfactant and foamer usually found in industrial-strength cleaners

Our family is currently using all Tiny Buds products stated above. I'll do detailed reviews about them in days to come. For  updates, you may visit and like my Facebook Page or follow me on Twitter.

Baby Safety Month Workshop- SAFE WITH ME!

Parents, caregivers, and other members of the family should know how and when to do Basic Safety Measures. When done correctly, they may save the lives of their loved-ones until medical help can be given by health care providers. 

Project 21 Workshops in cooperation with Unilab, Safety First, Beans Baby Store, and Lanceboxx Goodies in a Box cordially invites you to Baby Safety Month Workshop- SAFE WITH ME! A basic first aid and safety workshop designed for parents, guardians, and caregivers of babies and toddlers.

Workshop Details

Date: September 21, 2013, Saturday

  Time: 10:00 AM-5:00 PM
Venue: My Little Art Place, 222 Wilson Street, Greenhills, San Juan, Metro Manila, Philippines


Learn how to perform CPR, what to do when baby chokes, basic first aid for different scenarios, what to do in emergency situations, and a lot moreAll participants will be given a certificate of attendance from the American Safety & Health Institute.

Topics to be Discussed
  1. First Aid for Kids
  2. First aid box contents
  3. Who to call in case of emergencies
  4. What to do when your baby chokes
  5. CPR for infant and children
  6. What to do in Emergency Situations
  7. Basic Dressing Bandaging Techniques
  8. First Aid for Fall, Obstructions in the nose and ears, Bites and stings, Splinters, Bruises, Poisoning, Electrical injuries, Sprains, strains and dislocations, Bleeding and much, much more.
About the Speakers

  Winston Mendiola and Richmond Jabar are both Emergency Medical Technicians currently serving the Pasig City Emergency Rescue Team. They are licensed instructors from the American Safety and Health Institute and American Heart Association with over 7 years experience in first aid and rescue with countless experience in non-clinical first aid ranging from lego blocks stuck in a child's throat, to drowning babies, fall, animal bites, and other bizarre cases. Both are also volunteer firefighters. One of the best credentials of Winston is that he is also a Dad, so he understands parents' concerns regarding their kids' safety.

PHP 1,200 per participant
PHP 2,000 per couple
PHP 2,400 for groups of three

 Participants will receive goodies from the co-presenter, Unilab  and booth sponsors Safety First  and Beans Baby Store. Afternoon snacks will be provided by Lanceboxx Goodies in a Box.

Lunch and afternoon snacks will be served.
Your babies and kids are welcome to join the event!

Here is the sample certificate of attendance that will be given after the workshop

Seats are limited. Register now!

Please fill out the form found HERE to reserve your slot. The organizer will email you the confirmation and payment instructions within 2 days.

 For more information, inquiries, and other concerns, you may reach Miss Rigette Osoteo of  Project 21 Workshops through the contact number and links below.

Contact Number



you could add this workshop to your event calendar, mommies and daddies!  I'm sure this would be useful for you, your children's caregivers, and other members of your family.
Project 21 Workshops crafts family centered talks and events that educates, empowers and equips families through learning. Allowing them to live with more meaning, balance, and fun!

They believe that the family has the capacity to impact an entire society by its example. And it is their goal to educate people to succeed in different areas of family life by creating avenues for learning.

Every Project 21 Workshop is thoughtfully made with love by their family for families.

Behind Project 21 Workshops is husband and wife team, Niko and Rigette Osoteo.

If you are an expert in your field and would like to share your knowledge to families, Project 21 Workshops can create workshops for you! 
Email them at

If you are looking for certain workshops that you think is not yet in the market, let them know. They'll gladly consider organizing it. 

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Bridging the Fertility Gap, Fertility Awareness Week 2013

Last August 2, I received an email from Miss Thea Marie Geronimo, Account Executive from Strategic Edge Incorporated.

Dear Ms. SJ Valdez,

Greetings on behalf of the Merck Serono Team!

According to a study commissioned by leading biopharmaceutical company Merck, one in 10 Filipinos has one or more conditions that prevent them from conceiving. The study also reveals that while majority of couples with fertility problems seek initial consultation, treatment is hindered by patients’ perception of the high cost of treatment and lack of understanding on the procedures involved.

Merck Serono, a division of Merck, has recently launched a campaign to raise awareness on infertility in the Philippines and local treatment options, the Hope for Starting Families campaign. The campaign is set to roll out public information efforts such as a series of lay fora across major cities nationwide, and a dedicated website on infertility at to drive its commitment to the Filipino community.

In line with this, Merck Serono  cordially invites you to join a discussion on the causes of infertility and treatment options available in the Philippines on August 16 at 10:00 AM (registration begins at 9:30), Gold Function Room, F1 Hotels and Resorts, 32nd Street Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. I hope you don’t mind if I contact you in the coming days to confirm your attendance to this event. Should you have queries/concerns in advance, please feel free to reach me via email or my mobile ...

Looking forward to receiving your feedback! :)

Warm regards and many thanks,
Thea Geronimo

I wanted to attend this event because it would be another way to update my knowledge in maternal health care. 

I am a nursing graduate and topics like this excite me. 

Unfortunately, I had to decline Miss Thea's invitation due to my motherly duties.

I got another letter from Miss Thea yesterday. I was informed of what transpired during the said event and what would be the next step.

What transpired during the forum?

The Roots of Infertility

During the forum, fertility specialist Dr. Anthony Ancheta, FPOGS (Fellow, Philippine Obstetrical and Gynecological Society), FPSREI (Fellow, Philippine Society of Reproductive Endocrinology and Fertility, Inc.) shared that men and women are faced with a variety of biological and non-biological factors that contribute to infertility. There are male and female characteristics that separately influence the likelihood of conceiving a child as well as undetermined causes that prevent couples from achieving their goal of parenthood.

Female factors that affect infertility include:

  • ovulation problems
  •  blocked fallopian tubes
  • uterine factors
  • poor egg quality 

This is due to:

1. AGE

This contributes 35-40 percent to the inability of a couple to conceive. 


Account for 35-40 percent that result to infertility which include the sperm count, activity and quality, and male tube blockage.


These cover 25 percent. In some cases, men and women undergo necessary tests to determine the cause of their inability to bear a child but results suggest that male and female factors are normal. 

This prompts a closer look at other sources of the problem such as...







There is an urgent need for couples experiencing infertility to seek treatment but they must first understand their condition with the guidance of their specialists. It is important to fully assess and identify the factors that lead to infertility because each treatment depends on the result of the fertility workup or initial medical tests,” said Dr. Ancheta.

What must be done to address infertility issues?

It's easy as A, B, C!

After a thorough evaluation, couples are guided through options that can help them conceive. According to Dr. Ancheta, specialists begin with the least invasive, most cost-effective way of getting a couple pregnant depending on the complexity and factors that affect chances of having a baby.

“Efficient and cost-effective infertility treatments are here in the Philippines. Of course, there are certain pre-requisites that we must initially consider before going through those methods but it is important for couples to know that there are local experts ready to help and guide them through the process,” Dr. Ancheta explains.

Dr. Ancheta further expressed that assessing infertility treatment options is a rigorous step-by-step procedure that includes a review of the number of years that the couple has been trying to conceive, types of investigations done in the past, and treatment options previously performed. This helps experts in providing patients with a recommendation on how to proceed from one plan to another.

“At an age where people are capable of accessing free information with a click on a button, there is still a low level of understanding of the causes of infertility. Couples who are suffering from this condition acquire information directly from their fertility specialists only upon consultation and some from their peers. There is a need for a more accessible channel to develop their knowledge about infertility in the local and global context and eventually increase their chances of completing their family,” said Dess Cartaño, Fertility Franchise Associate Product Manager at Merck Serono.

In line with its Hope for Starting Families campaign, Merck Serono and the medical community joined hands to provide the online platform The website aims to serve as a vehicle for information on infertility, its causes, and treatment options for Filipino couples. 

Hope for Starting Families,

Bridging the Fertility Gap
Fertility awareness campaign set to host web sessions on infertility

Here in the Philippines, forming new life brings unfamiliar excitement and challenge to couples that seek to build a family. However, the decline of fertility rates brings forth a rising concern that couples in Asia are increasingly having difficulty in conceiving. Among the many pressing factors that contribute to infertility are the personal and social issues, and inadequate knowledge about the condition and treatments options.

Aimed at extending knowledge on infertility and its treatments in the Philippines and encouraging couples to seek medical help, the Hope for Starting Families campaign of the local medical community and leading biopharmaceutical company Merck Serono recently led a session that featured expert insights on the common causes of the condition and various methods that couples can take to improve chances of conception.

Fertility Awareness Week is a disease awareness initiative endorsed by ASPIRE (the Asia Pacific Initiative on Reproduction) in partnership with various local Fertility Societies throughout Asia and supported by Merck Serono. The campaign is designed to create awareness, improve knowledge and address the problems and misconceptions surrounding fertility in order to provide guidance to couples who wish to start a family.

From August 25 to 31, the platform will host a microsite for the region wide effort Fertility Awareness Week 2013. The weeklong event will feature a series of web congresses on the nature of infertility, barriers to understanding the condition, and treatment options available in the Philippines for Filipino couples seeking to conceive. 

With Asia holding one of the lowest fertility rates in the world, each session ultimately aims to address infertility and create a path for couples in the region to openly talk about their difficulties with conceiving. Fertility Awareness Week 2013 is endorsed by the Asia Pacific Initiative on Reproduction (ASPIRE) and the Philippine Society of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility (PSREI) in partnership with Merck Serono.

“The misconceptions that are surrounding the condition can only worsen if we do not address the lack of avenues to explain them. There are men and women that recognize infertility as a problem but do not seek treatment because of financial constraints, limited education, and other reasons. With the help of our local fertility experts, the campaign aims to enlighten these couples and provide opportunities to help them experience the joy of bringing forth new life,” added Cartaño. 

"Fertility Awareness Asia: Help Break the Silence"

Why do we have to share and join the campaign about Fertility Awareness?

I don't have fertility issues but I choose to share and join this campaign. I have seen some of my friends, both men and women, having fertility problems. They are still in denial and humiliated when these sensitive issues are being talked about. I empathize with them

Like in the video, these fertility issues can lead to more serious problems.

It is time to do an active part in this campaign. It may happen to you, your loved-ones, friends, neighbors, colleagues, and anyone that you know. It is our moral obligation to break the silence...

For more information on Fertility Awareness Week 2013, visit the official Hope for Starting Families website

About Merck Serono
Merck Serono is the biopharmaceutical division of Merck KGaA. With headquarters in Darmstadt, Germany, Merck Serono offers leading brands in 150 countries to help patients with cancer, multiple sclerosis, infertility, endocrine and metabolic disorders as well as cardiovascular diseases. In the United States and Canada, EMD Serono operates as a separately incorporated subsidiary of Merck Serono.

Merck Serono discovers, develops, manufactures and markets prescription medicines of both chemical and biological origin in specialist indications. We have an enduring commitment to deliver novel therapies in our core focus areas of neurodegenerative diseases, oncology and rheumatology.

About Merck
Merck is a global pharmaceutical and chemical company with total revenues of €10.3 billion in 2011, a history that began in 1668, and a future shaped by more than 40,000 employees in 67 countries. Its success is characterized by innovations from entrepreneurial employees. Merck's operating activities come under the umbrella of Merck KGaA, in which the Merck family holds an approximately 70% interest and free shareholders own the remaining approximately 30%. In 1917 the U.S. subsidiary Merck & Co. was expropriated and has been an independent company ever since. For more information, please visit or   

REFERENCE:  Merck Serono Press Release - Bridging the Fertility Gap PHOTO CREDITS:  Merck Serono

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