Showing posts with label Reflections. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Reflections. Show all posts

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Girls Can Do Anything Like Barbie

Barbie is a doll that every girl's dream to own. It's perfectly beautiful and stylish. It can be dressed up in any way that makes it fit to do any role that a little girl assigns to her.

Barbie is more than just an iconic doll. She is the epitome of what every girl wishes to be. Every girl , like Barbie, can do anything and can be good at it because she is confident and willed to be the best person that she can be.

This was the mission of the event , Barbie You Can Be Anything, held in Lucky Chinatown Mall last October.


It was more than just a fashion event showcasing the physical beauty of kids who joined. It also promoted virtues such as...

By joining and trying the different activities, each girl participant had a chance to realize what she would want to be in the future- a chef, baker, artist, teacher, athlete, singer, dancer, scientist perhaps?

The event was a venue for girls to have a chance to meet other girls. They can bond together through chatting and joining games and activities.

There were different games in store for the girls that could develop sportsmanship. In life there were instances that people could win or lose. The lesson would lie on how they would accept defeat and focus more on the joys that games could bring rather than being sad for losing.

Parents were there to support their daughters. I observed that they let them choose from start to finish. While they were inside doing the activities, kids would stay on the station that they liked best and parents would  let their daughters try all but they didn't hinder them in doing what they really wanted.

No matter what the girls do, their confidence and grace exuded. I knew that deep in their hearts they believed that they could do anything because they were born to be a star.

During the event, Rich Prime Global Inc. highlighted the career related activities that girls enjoyed: Barbie Artsy Studio- You Can Be An Artist, Barbie Cafe- You Can Be A Pastry Chef, Barbie Golf Are- You Can Be An Athlete, Barbie Pink Salon- You Can Be A Model/Fashionista

Kudos to Rich Prime Global Inc. for organizing an event like this. It was such a pleasure seeing those girls hit the runway and join the activities in store for them passionately and confidently. It was clear to me that they were getting ready to be a full-grown real Barbie dolls--- girls who would do anything to be the best that they could be.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Make Brushing More Fun with Minions!

Bringing-up our kids provided us so much learning through experimentation, lots of patience, a mountain full of prayer, and creativity. The joys and trials that we have endured as our kids grow up have become avenues of so much learning. For my blog entry today, I have invited my ex-boyfriend, best friend, confidant, and husband to share a portion of our parenting experiences in his perspective.

As a little boy, I never enjoyed the ritual of brushing my teeth. Agonizing were the moments when Tatay Jun, my dad, would ask me to brush my teeth with the minty toothpaste that we used to have back in the day. One time, we were watching a cartoon program on Saturday television and Tatay asked me who my  favorite cartoon character was, and I told him that it was Donald Duck. Later that day when my brushing schedule was coming, he told me that Donald Duck's teeth were perfect (Later on, I learned that ducks don't have teeth.) and that he would want me to be like Donald and Donald would help me. With that I became very excited. So come brushing time, Tatay gave me a Donald Duck toothbrush. I diligently brushed  my teeth since then knowing that I would have the same teeth as Donald's.

Times have changed. I am now a father with two bouncing, very active, and assertive boys. 

minions, colgate, toothbrush, toothpaste

Teaching them the importance of mouth hygiene is a daunting task. I remember how my father has encouraged me to develop the habit. But boy, kids nowadays have a way of circumventing on every logic, notion, or rationale that are imposed by their parents. They simply don't listen and follow. It's more like listen and ask, "Why?" The trick is, if the reason does not conform to what they want, then so long reason. 

As for the "mouth hygiene" thing, my eldest Ross taught me one important lesson on how to do it. During one of our heated arguments on why he should clean his teeth, he argued, "Why can't it be fun?" At that moment, I realized that my dad a long time ago taught me and my sisters mouth hygiene by engaging us in somewhat "role playing" activity. Whenever we brush our teeth, he would pretend to be Donald Duck and would even imitate the character's manner of speech.

Ross at four
As for the care of my kids, my wife and I agreed to brush with them together. To enhance the experience more we bought them their favorite character themed toothbrushes. Then while we brushed together, we would pretend that we belonged to a family that would always do the same things one at a time. It so happened that my son Ross's favorite character then was Mickey Mouse.

So while we were brushing, I would usually ask him to discuss things about Mickey Mouse. Then at certain instances, my wife and I would give quick instructions to Ross the manner on which he should clean his teeth. So every night, we would gather around near the sink and brush our teeth together. It became our bonding time or ritual before sleeping. Our brushing time became a fun-filled and anticipated activity everyday. 

Nowadays, Ross has developed the habit of cleaning his teeth regularly even at times without us telling him. My wife and I together with him are still doing it but with one more "trainee" in the guise of his younger brother, Ice. Same routine, same fun but with a twist since Ice has Mild Autism. he has the tendency to stick to routines. On top of the routines that I have mentioned, one particular aspect of our brushing session with Ice is his fixation to a particular brand of toothpaste. Among all the brands that we have tried and tested on him, he prefers with utmost reverence, Colgate Original. So far, my kids have developed strong, white teeth on top of their good brushing habits.

The latest "Minions" themed toothbrush and Colgate toothpaste can be motivating factor for young kids who love the adorable Minion characters like Dave, Stuart, Kevin, Carl, Phil, and Lance to see brushing as fun-filled health-laden activity. Furthermore, Colgate has customized oral care by coming up with two (2) variants of their themed product, both available in Lazada Philippines---

Colgate Minions 2-5 Years Old (Junior) Oral Care Pack  and Colgate Minions Kids 5-9 Years Old (Youth) Oral Care Pack (This is definitely a must-have for Ice who is currently six years old.).

These packs were specifically designed through research to address the oral hygiene needs of kids while keeping them happy and inspired as they brush their teeth.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Is My Best Enough For My Kids?

I made a major decision that changed my life as a married career woman 11 years ago. It was easy for me to embrace the idea of becoming a stay at home mom. I knew that I had to give up so much pertaining to a promising career opportunities and mobile lifestyle. I accepted that meeting with friends and fast professional and personal growth would be scarce or none at all. I didn't falter because all I thought was the presence that I could give Kuya and having a nanny would never be an option  again.

Paps and I hired a nanny twice but it never worked for us. It came to a point that only the two of us could fully understand and extend our patience to our son who was very active and clingy that time.

I never look back totally but sometimes I glance behind a little to remember the reason why I have decided to become a SAHM especially during those moments when I feel exhausted, impatient, and irritable. It is inevitable that some days are better than others and vice versa. My life becomes more challenging and time bound when I have started a homebased business with my mom after giving birth to Bunso who has been diagnosed with Mild Autism before his fourth birthday. I have to juggle my duties to give my best to my family especially to my precious sons and have trained myself to insert at least 20 minutes of "me time" a day to keep my sanity intact.

All-Around Pinay Mama FernCKidz

There are instances that I become so focused with business tasks that I take some time that is intended for my kids to finish deadlines. Honestly, I feel guilty. We live by the paycheck that makes me more eager to help my husband earn for a living to give our kids the life that they deserve. Like Paps, I take time to give our kids not just their basic needs but their wants sometimes because I like them to grow up knowing how to prioritize and make the right decisions. I communicate with them and teach them life lessons for them to grow up good and self-directed individuals. I see to it that I make the best out of what we have as a family. I do my best to be always there for my kids. I love them more than I love myself. I can give up everything to make them happy. But the question is, do they know and feel how much I love them? I know that it's not always easy to give the best for my kids but is my best enough for them?

All-Around Pinay Mama- FernCKidz
I have shortcomings and imperfections and I wonder how my kids perceive me as a mom. Do their hugs and kisses validate their love for me? When they say "I love you, Mama", do they really mean that they love me or it's just a sort of a habit because I always say "I love you" to them several times a day? Honestly, it never crossed my mind to ask them not until I watched this video:

By merely thinking of asking them about how they see me as a mom makes me feel uncomfortable. It's because I feel that my efforts are not enough, that I still need to improve more to be the best mom that I can be. My husband once told me during one of the lowest moments of my life as a mom, "Mama, don't be too hard on yourself. You are a great mom and always remember that." I hope that my kids feel the same way. Well, I don't have the courage to ask my kids but I can ask Paps to do that for me.

All-Around Pinay Mama- FernCKidz

FERN-C kidz was created and manufactured by the makers of FERN-C, the number one Sodium Ascorbate Vitamin C brand in the Philippines. As a product of FERN Incorporated and having the Quali-C seal, you are assured of its quality and efficacy. Plus, your children are sure to love the delicious orange flavor of FERN-C kidz. #KalidadnaAlaga ay sigurado with FERN-C kidz. 
All-Around Pinay Mama- FernCKidz

Friday, April 28, 2017

Taking the Road to a Fulfilled Life

In this life we call a "journey", we have the power to choose what we want to be and the road that we want to travel. In my case, I always choose to take the road less traveled. I always believe that I am on the right track when the situation gets tough. All I have to do is to purge all my resources and energy positively to keep going.

Having a difficult and sad childhood up to the extent of being stripped off with everything in young adulthood while figuring out how to earn for a living as a breadwinner, summarizes the darkest days of my life until I decided to get married and build a family of my own. I believed in those moments that "It shall pass", and it did. I faced reality and held on to the truth. I trained my mind to find something good in every bad situation. Having distasteful moments could teach more than losing more. The most important aspect of it was I learned who my true friends were and faith kept my sanity intact.

My life has been a continuous struggle but it doesn't stop me from being self-directed and optimistic. There was one time that I had a chance to converse with a friend priest and I told him my life story. These were the exact words that he said, "If that situation of yours happened to someone else, he or she might get crazy." Yes, it was easy to just give up and be selfish. I was young and there were opportunities in store for me that could be attained by being alone... But I chose to stay and be with my mom and brother. I didn't run away from my problems. I initially chose to stay away from negative people and that helped a lot. 

I am now married to my best friend, the best husband and dad, the person that God has given me in those times that I've needed someone to understand me. We have two wonderful boys and the youngest has been diagnosed with Mild Autism Spectrum Disorder. We have so many blessings to thank for despite having a challenging family life. We may not be rich in material possessions but I can say that we are happy. Our togetherness is truly a gift.

Trials come and I can face them bravely and conquer them gracefully because I am surrounded with good people. But at the back of my mind, am I truly contented? Am I completely free from my ugly past?

Honestly, there comes a time when I feel that there is lacking despite planning my life purposefully in accordance to what I know that is best for myself and the people I love. I feel this way when everything turns out unwell despite being prepared and righteous. Maybe, subconsciously, I feel that life is very unfair despite doing my very best to make it fair for myself and the people that I hold dear. I have a strong faith in God and it's very wrong to ask Him "Why me again? All is well and good, but why another misfortune? Mabuti naman akong tao at wala akong inaapakan. Bakit ako na naman?" Well, I am not always thinking like this. It seldom happens but it hurts. I feel this way whenever I am bombarded with too much problems all at the same time.  Itutulog ko lang at nagiging okay naman ako kinabukasan. I keep moving forward. I stay optimistic and do the things that I trained my mind and body for including repression and suppression of feelings. But still, I feel that there's an empty space in my life that needs to be filled in. 

Learning about the upcoming e-course, "The Roadmap to a Fulfille Life" by Miss Viviene Bigornia, just came right on time. I seldom read posts on Facebook for a couple of days due to my very busy schedule and it was the first post that popped up! Maybe God was sending me a message. Maybe involving myself in this course could take all my unresolved issues away.

The Roadmap to a Fulfilled Life

These four statements struck me the most when I visited the website that prompted me to take the course:

- Learn the foundation and the very first step in finding God's calling
- Know what is a fulfilled life and how to experience it.
- Unearth your past experiences and discover where God is leading you.
- Get yourself prepared to transition from where you are to where you should be.

I am totally submitting myself to this course. Enrollment starts today, April 28, and ends on May 15. Upon enrollment, I can get an access to the following:

- Free Ebooks
- Free Printables
- Exclusive Access to its Private Community

You may go to for more details.  If you feel that you have a situation closer to mine or if you are still finding your purpose, I invite you to learn with me. I believe that this will help us break the chain of resentments and pain to find more meaning in what we do.

Monday, February 27, 2017

How We Treat Our Family Members With Special Needs Can Make or Break Them

Bunso is under the supervision of his therapists and SpEd teachers for two years. He still feels very excited to go to school to learn with his teachers and classmates and it shows that he is well taken cared of and being loved by them.

I still can remember the time that he was diagnosed with Mild Autism Spectrum Disorder. He was non-responsive, speechless, rowdy, and impatient. He would usually throw tantrums, shout or cry restlessly, or wouldn't stay in one place for a long time both in private or public. Due to his routinary behavior and volatile temper, we would end up physically and emotionally exhausted at the end of each day.

Aside from dealing with Bunso's wholistic development, we encountered financial difficulties along the way. His therapy sessions, education, and daily expenses are expensive. It was never easy and will never be easy to support a child with special needs. In short, our family and I know that other families with members with special needs are experiencing huge changes when talking about family mechanics and setting priorities.

We are so blessed that our dear Bunso belongs to the upper spectrum which means that he is highly functional. His hyperactivity is encompassing but he learns fast and adapts well to his environment. We are so glad that he can now express himself through words and actions, not that much yet but he is doing his best. He can follow instructions, become more affectionate, start engaging in interactive play, read words, write numbers and letters, draw simple objects, identify things, and helps at home and school. 

I must say that I and the people that we know who usually don't see him often observe positive changes in him and also see him do antics that kids like his case do but it's okay. What we find important is we keep on supporting him and guiding him to reach his full potential. As days come and go, each step with him becomes more challenging but it boils down to four things on how we manage the situation. First, WE ACCEPT HIM FOR WHO HE IS. We don't compare him to other kids. We know that he is unique like the rest of us. Our genuine acceptance, we believe, makes him acceptable for all. We are open with his condition and it makes him more accepted and loved if not by all, but by most people around him. Second, WE TREAT HIM NORMALLY. We don't give him special treatment. We talk to him and deal with him like we do to the other members of the family. Third, WE BELIEVE THAT HE CAN. Like any person, may be normal in our societal standards or with special needs, we know that he can live a normal life independently and he can be successful in anything that he chooses to be in the future.

One of the things that we encourage him to do is to follow his passion according to his own pace. We don't pressure him at all. He is now into playing educational games, solving easy and difficult puzzles (Yes, he can solve puzzles that adults here at home can't.), painting, reading story books for children, and helping do the chores.

Bunso was in the mood doing cutting, craft punching, pasting, and writing today. I couldn't think of a title of his recent artwork but Vincent Van Gogh's "Starry, Starry Night" popped in my head. So I called it Bunso's "Super Starry, Starry Night". . . . To justify the title, as you can see, he has placed so many stars on the entire craft paper. LOL! . . . Bunso was loving our bonding time so much! After this, we had lunch; washed clothes, did the laundry, cooked pancakes together with cuddling and story telling in between; created the alphabet using clay; raised toy cars; and did another cutting activity! (Not to mention that I did my own chores in between too...) . . . Whew! In a time like this, I feel so blessed to be a former preschool teacher. My son is non-stop and I have to keep up with him by giving him different activities to enhance his skills. . . . #allaroundpinaymama #aapmkids #preschool #art #cutting #pasting #craftpunch #carlcraftpunch #stars #sky #instadaily #instagood #parenting #teacher #teaching #autismawareness #autismspeaks #mildautism #autismmom #mommybloggersph #momswhoblogph
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Bunso loves art activities whether they are being done in school or at home. He is more focused and determined to accomplish the given tasks but he's still adjusting to the feeling of getting his hands too dirty. LOL! . . Thanks for sharing this, Teacher @kheygingo! This made my day! I feel so proud of my little boy! Have a happy weekend! ♡.♡ . . regram @kheygingo Finger Prints � ❤️❤️❤️ @allaroundpinaymama . . P.S. Thank you, @jazonlineshop, for the pretty paper cut-outs that I got from you at @ahandmadeaffair! They made our mom and son #cottonart lovelier! . . #allaroundpinaymama #autismmom #autismappreciation #autismawareness #autismspeaks #momblogger #mommybloggersphilippines #makeitblissful #mib_cleanandbright #igersmanila #fingerpainting #art #instacolor #painting #2september2016
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A few days ago I captured a photo of some baked goodies, finished products of our family baking activity. It was a day after my #cupcake #baking workshop at @themayakitchen1 with Kuya (big brother in Filipino), my eldest son. Before coming up with a nice photo of these delicious-looking and best-tasting cupcakes, the whole process, from prompting the kids until decorating, was very messy, noisy, and shall I say chaotic? Kuya was so excited to bake with his baby brother that by just telling him so, he became hyperactive and wanted to do everything by himself! . . It took me at least 20 times to capture this perfectly. If you can relate to me, I would like to invite you to join us by telling your stories through photos #behindthefeed. Due to the advent of social media, we tend to just share what is flawless and perfect. We create a good image that we want to portray making others believe that our lives are so perfect but in reality, they aren't. . . It is so liberating to be natural and real that's why I submit myself in joining the movement. . . I encourage you to check out what other #mombloggers are up to by going to the hashtag #behindthefeed. Somehow you can relate like I do. . . #allaroundpinaymama #aapmmusings #mommybloggersphilippines #certifiedbloggers #momswhoblogph #igersmanila #igphilipines #aapmkids
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His most favorite chore is laundering clothes and he knows all the steps especially the moment when it's time to put fabric conditioner without looking at the washing machine's timer. His senses are highly sensitive. By just hearing the flow of water, he knows when to do it. He also loves helping me cook. I really, really like it when he helps me because he is such a perfectionist in a peculiar way. I admit that he can do things better than I can sometimes and it makes me happy.

Naku, naku, naku, Mars at Pards! Naiinip na ba kayo sa next blog post ko? Ako rin, naiinip na. LOL! I hope that I can start my #AAPMfavorites series soon. While waiting, I would like to share a quick & easy left-over recipe na patuk na patok sa kids and young at heart. Presenting my Luncheon Meat Pizza... Super dali lang gawin. All you need to do is to spread HUNT'S SPAGHETTI SAUCE PARMESAN CHEESE FLAVOR sa @gardeniaph TOAST. Sprinkle with grated @edencheeseph followed by baked PUREFOODS LUNCHEON MEAT bits. Then top again with grated EDEN CHEDDAR CHEESE. Heat in the oven toaster until the toast is light brown and the cheese is already melted. To make it look like real pizza, I cut the toast into two triangles pagkaluto. Easy lang di ba? I made this recipe with Bunso kaya mas lalong sumarap kasi may kasamang pagmamahal. Happy weekend! Let's spend our time with our family. Love, love, love... ❤ . #allaroundpinaymama #aapmfavorites #allaroundpinaymamacooks #pizza #homecooked #oventoasterpizza #spotmyfood #instafood #foodie #pizza #foodie #yummyph #wimyummy #pepperph #huffposttaste #foodblogger #momblogger #mommybloggersphilippines #certifiedbloggers #momswhoblogph #nofilter #nothingbutanokia #lumia630
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Bunso loves Oreo lately but only eat its filling. So we always have the cookies left uneaten. Since he also loves #cooking and he never fails to surprise me, by the way, I let him do this #Oreo #RefrigeratorCake all by himself with minimal assistance. I unpacked the ingredients and gave him instructions one at a time. He was sort of an "OC" or perfectionist that he was able to do it way much better than I did before. 😄 . We used 500 ml Alaska Crema All-Purpose Cream, 250ml Alaska Condensed Milk, Graham Crackers, and 3 packs of 137 grams Oreo Vanilla filled sandwich cookies without filling. I told Bunso to mix the cream and milk together and layer the ingredients alternately on rectangular microwave oven safe containers. Here's the other version: . #allaroundpinaymama #aapmfavorites #aapmkids #food #foodie #sweets #spotmyfood #huffposttaste #wimyummy #yummyph #sweettooth #playwithoreo #autismmom #autismawareness #mildautism #foodblogger #momblogger #mommybloggersphilippines #certifiedbloggers #momswhoblogph #nban #nothingbutanokia #lumia630
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Lastly, WE ARE ALWAYS HERE FOR HIM. With me as an exception because I am taking care of him full time, Paps and Kuya always give time for him despite of spending more time in work and school respectively. Constant communication through words and actions is very important with family members with special needs. We talk to Bunso, hug and kiss him, and we show him that he is being loved and accepted by us and in return, people around him love and accept him which make him confident to face the world without inhibitions. We make sure that Paps and I do "parenting" instead of only "herding". We "date" him and his Kuya in separate occasions so that they can feel that they are special. We see to it that we also spend time together as a family. It doesn't matter where we are, as long as we are making good memories.

We don't know when Bunso shall overcome the challenges of his condition. What we do now is what we believe can determine his future. 

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

AAPM Musings: Mothers Teach by Example

While I was walking on my way home last Monday, the things that would transpire during the day played in my head. I would always do that. I wouldn't want to waste my time being unproductive. Sa pag-iisip pa lang nakakapagod na and I knew that my plan would surely change because being a full time mom taking care of a child with special needs entails a lot of hard work and unpredictable schedule. Walang araw na magkamukha. Laging iba. Laging unique. I accepted that fact and lived with it a long, long time ago. There were days that I would feel wasted because I had to juggle my tasks and wear different hats not one at a time but all at the same time. Kung minsan nakauumay pero kung iisipin ko, masuwerte pa rin ako.

Oo, masuwerte ako. I can see my kids closely. I can watch them grow and don't miss anything (except the things that they do whenever they are in school or whenever they are with their Paps). I am always ready to come to their aid when they need me. I am hands-on with them and that is something that money can't buy. It's priceless. I know that many women would like to be in my place. Mas mahirap maging hands-on and full time mom and wife. I am on duty 24/7 and in my case, if I may use the term, "Weewee lang ang pahinga.", kadalassan pati pag-weewee pahirapan pa. But I don't regret choosing this vocation. I fret not being in this situation. Sometimes I feel guilty when my patience is being tested and I don't extend it especially when I am physically and emotionally exhausted. I feel sad when I think that I don't give too much effort. Sometimes I am being too hard on myself because it's needed. But at the end of the day, there are things that remind me that I am doing my best even I feel that my best wasn't good enough.

When I was about to reach our home, I saw two pairs of mom and child sleeping on the foot bridge. They were homeless. They would beg just to survive. 'Yong isang nanay natutulog pa habang gising na ang baby niyang umiiyak. I empathized with their situation but at the back of my mind, I asked myself, "Bakit kaya ang unfair ng mundo? Why is it that some mothers lose hope and need to beg just to feed herself and her child?" Life is challenging or may be very difficult to some but for me, it's not an excuse to stop dreaming. It's not an excuse to stop working hard and find means to live and not to survive alone. I didn't give money that I would usually do. I handed them food. Nagkakataon naman na tuwing may food ako sa bag, kahit candy pa 'yan or bread, lagi akong may nakikitang namamalimos. Honestly, I felt guilty too. Why? Because I gave them fish and I didn't teach them to catch fish.

It's easy for me to say that difficulties should not be hindrances to stand up and keep moving forward. I experienced hunger, rejection, bullying, and all sorts of ugly situation when we were stripped off with material possessions. My mom, brother, and I endured hardships for more than five years. The mothers with their children that I saw might have different circumstances with ours but the difference was that my mom stood for us against all odds and she didn't lose hope when we lost everything after she and my dad separated more than a decade ago. We knew who our true friends were, those who would stick with us through thick and thin. We worked hard and stood the test of time. We didn't doubt with one another. Our faith kept us together. We chose the right path and fought our battles patiently and wisely. Those experiences were difficult to bear without the strength and love of my mother. Those strength and love are the things that I hold on to now that I am a mom.
I wish that all mothers should not give up despite the harsh realities of life. I hope and pray that someday, I will not see mothers and their children beg on streets. The mother is the light of the family. The attitude of the kids and their outlook in life depend on how they are raised by their mothers. I am so blessed to have a resilient mom. Oo, masuwetre ako. My mom taught me how to be a fighter and to keep moving forward. I have no right to whine on petty things. I can do anything, big or small, because my mom taught me by example.

I hope that someday the kids of those mothers that I've seen would not repeat history. I hope that in the future they will not beg on streets with their own children like what their moms do presently. Sayang ang pagkakataon. Maari namang gumawa ng paraan para mabuhay ng marangal at disente.

*Photo Credit: Pinterest

Thursday, February 2, 2017

My Chosen #OneWord for 2017

Last year, my chosen #OneWord was BALANCE. For this year, I choose FOCUS. Yes, focus. I really need it. I have so many ideas in my head, so many things that I want to accomplish, all because I want to improve myself and my family's situation as well.


Was I able to accomplish my chosen #OneWord last year? The answer is yes, but not yes. Ang gulo ko, 'di ba? I was able to balance everything last year pero nakulangan ako. I didn't extend my effort in doing those things that really matter. I just let the day pass na laging bitin ang mga nagawa ko. I felt that I wasn't doing my very best. I wasn't hard on myself but I felt that I should accomplish things much better than before. I should find time to try new things, read more books, see my friends, level up my business plan. I should have been more productive if I've committed myself more on helping my husband to provide for the family while enjoying the means of achieving it. Hindi 'yong puro finding happiness lang in doing what I love to do. I became focused in taking care of Bunso due to his special needs and training Kuya to be more independent and self-directed. Nakalimutan ko na kailangan din ako ni Loley in running Faithshoppe Philippines. Nakaligtaan ko rin na matutong magpahinga kahit 20-minute bath man lang sa gabi kapag tulog na ang mga bata. I became so focused in solving the problems of other people despite the fact that I had to solve my own too. I got T-I-R-E-D again like I would usually end up when the year was about to end and the fear of getting sick and having a sick member of the family prompted me to be extremely cautious. Although optimism helped, I should have been more flexible and persevering last year, focusing on my family's priorities rather others people's priorities.

In line with that feeling of exhaustion, I suddenly stopped blogging and hosting giveaways towards the end of the year. I stopped checking my emails thinking that I would decline invites again. I had pending product reviews and open ended collaborations. I felt so incompetent and irresponsible. I had writer's block. My brain was so drained. May mga ideas ako pero hindi ko siya ma-express ng mabuti. I would just sit in front of my laptop staring blankly whenever I had a chance to blog. I got tired of updating my social media accounts and wasted my time several times. "Magpapahinga muna ako. Baka sobrang stressed lang ako dahil sa kamu-multitasking", sabi ko sa sarili ko. 

Then on the second week of December, my best friend for three decades visited me and introduced me to her newest home-based business. She started selling high quality perfume testers, which prompted me to try and eventually became one of her partners. Mahilig kasi ako sa perfumes. What made me decide to join her aside from the good quality of the testers, sobrang affordable siya. Abot kaya sa bulsa ng lahat. Gusto namin lahat ng tao mayaman man o sakto lang maging mabango at makayang bumili ng designer perfumes.

A photo posted by SJ Valdez (@allaroundpinaymama) on

I also had a chance to talk to my friend and former co-worker in Xavier School who started selling a safe whitening fluoride toothpaste that I was interested to try for the longest time. After trying that and saw that it could really work, I became one of her partners and started selling it too.

A photo posted by SJ Valdez (@allaroundpinaymama) on

The joy of online selling among my friends became alive again and it made me feel so productive.  I had the chance to do what I enjoy and earn at the same time. Hindi man malaki pero nakatutulong din sa pamilya. All I had to do was to buy and sell. I just had to be creative in marketing the products through social media which I could do whenever Bunso was doing his "me time". I still didn't set aside crafting. Selling perfume testers and whitening fluoride toothpaste tubes just prompted me to slow down a bit in crafting. It was still there but I put less attention to it because of its demands that I couldn't meet due to taking care of my child with special needs. Despite of that, Mom was still the one running it and providing the majority of stocks in our outlets. I still help her with the inventory and delivery during my free time especially while Bunso was in school.

The tasks that I mentioned kept me in blogging hiatus for almost two months. Doing so made me realize that I still couldn't let go of blogging and crafting totally. I was surprised to know that my blog was still being visited. I still got invites from PR's. Our clients were looking for our printed products like shirts, key holders, fans, magnets that I wasn't able to create for months due to Bunso's condition. How could I resist his "lambing" and being clingy most of the time? Hindi siya habambuhay na magiging bata kaya I savor every moment whenever I'm with him.

As days passed, I got motivated to do my usual activities and thought of ways on how to do them again along with the new things that I included in my routines. It's going to be more challenging, I know, but I believe can be doable.

It just so happened that Bunso is getting more independent, even though slowly, but I know he is getting there. All I need to do is to focus, to find time and meaning in every small detail of my endeavors but still knowing that my priority is my family. I am going to be a little hard on myself this year. I need to stretch my efforts because it's a must. I am not going to be afraid to move from my comfort zone for me to spread my wings and find more opportunities. I am going to be more choosy in accepting work or collaborations, only those that are beneficial for my family and readers are allowed. My time is precious and I should use it wisely this time. It's never too late to begin again and be the best person that I can be. I have to FOCUS on what really matters.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

AAPM's Ten Keys to Happiness

I may not have the chance to narrate my life story in a very detailed manner but I can describe it in two words- VERY CHALLENGING. It’s been like this since I was born.  All I do is to keep moving forward and see the goodness in every situation no matter how bad it is. See, I have survived for 38 years!

Yes, it’s true that sometimes it’s difficult to be happy when we are faced with so many trials and failures but I believe that happiness is a choice.

I choose to be happy despite all odds and here are my 10 keys to happiness:

I count my blessings.

I see beauty and goodness in everything.

I think positively.

I rest.

I do things that I love.

I am happy for others’ happiness.

I help even if it’s not necessary.

I empathize.

I reward myself.

I cherish good memories.

When Columbia International Food Products, Inc. sent me a package, opening and seeing its contents brought up fond memories. VFresh, iCool, Monami, and Frutos are my companions in my everyday challenges and triumphs. They were my reliable companions while I was reviewing for the tests, taking the exams, while waiting for the job interview, when doing projects and chatting with friends, and many more.

This brand is still part of me and my family. It’s one of the high quality brands that my family and friends trust through the years.

Like a true friend, this brand keeps up with the changing times. It always brings joy to everyone through thick and thin.

Once again, thank you, Columbia International Food Products, Inc. for making me, my friends, and my family happy ever since!

Kayo? What are your keys to happiness?

 About the Brand

Columbia International Food Products, Inc. was established in 1937 and has become known for providing delectable sweets apt for the Filipino palate. For the past decades in the business, the company has been recognized as one of the top candy and confectionery manufacturers and included in the Top 1000 companies in the Philippines. At present, the company continues to create new products to lift the Filipino standards to global levels. They are proud to have produced popular product line-ups which have won the trust and respect of satisfied consumers in the country.

Quality and value for money, theses are the things that we think of when we mention Columbia. Consumers have come to trust the brand for its capability to provide affordable quality treats.

Hence, whenever people see the Columbia red and white logo, they automatically think of the delicious sweets that they grew up with. Consumers can't help but feel proud, for it is a brand which they consider their own, a truly Pinoy brand.

*Photo Credits:
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