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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Beach: A Stress Debriefer

Last Saturday, my family were busy moving things from the pad to the new places of dwelling, for me, my sister and Lili, as well as for my parents and 2 siblings. It was quite tough having to wake up early and carrying such heavy load. But we had a brief beach session after our first round of transfer since the house that my parents will be living in temporarily is 10 minutes away from the beach. 

So we stopped to take a dip, and eventually had our breakfast there. I think we spent more than an hour there. The kids had fun, although it is quite evident for my little brother that he is afraid of drowning, and he talks about the water resembling that of the flooding.. for the first time after more than two months, he was able to articulate his experience and fears during the TS Sendong flash flood. Lili on the other hand, is trying so hard to swim. She said that she should learn how to swim so that she will not be afraid when the next flood will happen. That is of course a great opportunity for debriefing the two.. I believe that kids need to be debriefed every now and then, as the trauma must be faced head on in order to be liberated and for the survivor to fully recover. 

Now, every weekend will be a beach debriefing session with my family. It will also be a bonding session and a swimming lesson day for the two..

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Sunday, February 19, 2012

That Angry Bird Birthday Loot

It was a few months back that my daughter attended her classmate's birthday and she got the birthday loot above. The huge Angry Bird was actually a balloon that got scarred so all the air came out of it. What's left is something my daughter would like to make a kite body..I am not really sure how, but my daughter insists that it will just be easy... 



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Kiddie Summer Program

I just arrived from Culinary Institute of Cagayan de Oro, where we were invited to a baking demo by Chef Hasset Go of Med Chef, one of their senior chefs. I found out that they are offering a 4-day Kiddie Chef program for the summer, and I am interested to enroll my daughter who is actually a chef wanna-be. I could also enroll her in a music summer program or learn the guitar like that of j mascis jazzmaster, but I am afraid I do not know where to enroll her. Of course, I could only afford two programs for her this summer, and swimming is one of them already. 

Anyway, I am sure we can decide when summer is near. In the mean time, we just have to focus on her studies, as well as find a better alternative to her school for June. I am no longer happy with her current school so I will transfer her to a new one while it is not yet to late.


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CIC Open House Today..

We were invited to attend the pre-CIC Open House activity where Chef Hasset Go conducted a baking demo dubbed as "My Favorite Cakes Cooking Demo".  It was nice to be able to witness and even join  Chef Hasset Go as he prepared his cakes.

 But then we lacked time to finish the Concorde, so we only had the two cakes below:

The very yummy Caramel Custard Cake and the Chocolate Truffle Cake. Oh, and Chef Hasset Go signed our recipe booklets, while we were given Cookies made by CIC students as tokens.

Well, after the lunch that they served us, all seven of us shared a slice of each cake to taste. And just before we left, we were given umbrellas. So timely because it was really hot outside the building. We did not opt to join the Open House this afternoon for we have so much to do. Anyway, we had fun.. so thanks CIC for the invite.. 


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Growing Up..

Last February 14, 2012, my baby brother bought my mother a flower bouquet from his own pockets. Then I heard him say that he is saving his money for mother's day gifts come May 2012. Oh how my baby brother has grown. Unfortunately, he prefers to buy things rather than make things like cards and all others. My Lili, on the other hand, continues to make cards and story books with her bare hands. I love the thought that the two kids are thoughtful enough to save their allowance for items as well as materials to use for the stuff they want to give. And proudly I can say that such characteristic is distinct with our kiddies at home. I am glad that they are growing up as good persons.


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Friday, February 17, 2012

Sendong Monthsary Today..

We have started cleaning the apartment yesterday, continued clean up this morning and tomorrow we are going to officially move in to a new place-- me, my sister and Lili, but not my parents and siblings.  Although, we are going with them to the house where they will be moving at 4 in the morning. My father says he is not feeling safe in the new apartment, and not comfortable too. For awhile I thought that moving to a bigger space is the solution, but not!  And I do understand why he wants to move to his own property. After two months of being "displaced", a term we usually coined with those who are living "not in their own home", is true to some extent in my father's perspective. Since moving here in the pad, we have not been comfortable with the lessor's attitude. Well, they always have the right to do things according to their rules. That's always the downside when one is renting. And my parents have not been renting for quite a long while. So two months may just be enough for them to live in an uncomfortable set up. 

Anyway, they are moving to a family property in Opol. My father says, he will feel comfortable there because he owns the place. No rules of another person outside the family to follow. Not that we are fond of breaking rules, it's just that some people, especially the eccentric ones, impose rules that are way too much to even understand. But the said move for them is of course just temporary, while waiting for the unit that they have recently applied for in a small community in Gran Europa. Well, the necessary requirements have already been met, but some concerns regarding paperwork and such have taken quite a while.  Anyhow, as soon as they're done, then they will be moving there again. 

I guess you could say that home can never be home unless you will feel comfortable about living in that particular space. As for me and my sister, we'll do the challenge this time, in a more complicated, hopefully rewarding manner. So before the month ends, we shall be divided again, and shall part ways. Hoping for better horizons and a brighter, fruitful, happier future.


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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

5 Tips For Teaching Your Kids To Be Organized

Kids and disorganization frequently go hand in hand, and although some chaos is typically standard fare when raising kids, it doesn't have to rule your home! Being organized is a skill that anyone can learn. Since most kids are not naturally inclined to be neat, learning this important skill will help them build good habits and self discipline that will contribute to their success in school, career and all areas of life. The following are some simple ways to help your kids learn the art of organization.

1. Hold A Family Strategy Session

Planning how you want to tackle getting your home organized will involve the entire family. Therefore, get everyone involved! Before you present the idea to your kids, create an overview of the areas in your home that are the most disorganized. Once you have done this, hold a family strategy session, letting everyone contribute ideas on how to create order from the chaos. Getting your kids involved will help them feel a sense of ownership, making their participation something to take pride in rather than something to dread.

2. Lead By Example

The easiest way to teach your kids to be organized is to practice what you preach. Start by designating a place for things that are used regularly by all household members. If you are disorganized yourself, this will be a bit of a challenge at first, but don't despair! It will get easier with a little practice. Make a list of things your kids use daily, such as toys or school books, and designate a specific place for these items, making sure that they are returned to the same spot when not in use. As your kids become more consistent, add additional items to the list. Before you know it, you will have organized kids and a well organized home! Remember, too, that the younger you start training your kids to be organized, the easier it will be.

3. Decluttering Your Way To Success

The best organizational plans can quickly end in frustration if your home is hopelessly cluttered! Make decluttering the house a family event. Have everyone go through closets and bedrooms, sorting out unwanted items. Once this is done, have each person designate where different items will go in their area and label it. This will help them to stay organized in the future. By starting with a neat home, it will also be easier to keep it that way.

4. Show and Tell

Sometimes kids will bend the truth, especially when asked if they have completed unpleasant tasks, such as cleaning, organizing or doing their homework. This is when show and tell becomes a crucial step in the organization process. Whether it's cleaning and organizing, or completing their homework, it's best to have them show you exactly what they have done. If they have a heavy homework load, which is common when they are attending junior high and high school, they may simply forget an assignment. By actually examining their work, you can be confident that they have completed all of their assignments. Your kids will also be confident that they will arrive at school ready for class, with their completed homework in hand. It is helpful to get them in the habit of placing completed assignments in their school backpack, leaving it by the door ready for the next school day.

5. Reward Accomplishments

Some might consider rewarding their kids by paying them for helping around the house to be bribery, but it can be a great way to teach responsibility and a strong work ethic. After all, when we report to work each day, we expect to be paid for our efforts. Kids respond equally well to being rewarded for their efforts! Just be sure that the reward offered is realistic pay for the work being performed. Most people wouldn't promise their teenager a Ferrari for simply cleaning their room and taking out the trash. A few dollars allowance each week, or a visit to the local mall for that new CD or outfit they have been talking about, however, might suffice as equitable compensation! Be sure to make it clear that if their room is a mess, homework is incomplete or their chores not done, no reward is forthcoming. James is the employee of a British printer cartridge supplier which means he works with a whole range of toner cartridges and printer ink when he’s not setting up the blog. 

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Monday, February 13, 2012

Bills, Money and Everything Else to See..

I already saw, held and had a photo op with Singapore's biggest currency. Ten thousand Singaporean Dollars, and it's just one bill. Well, it wasn't mine, but my Ilonggo turned Singaporean citizen uncle's money. It was really nice to see that and when I was asked by Singaporean Immigration, on our way back from Johor Bahru, in December 2010, during their standard operating procedures checking of bags, some of them are not even familiar with the bill. Anyway, that's really something. I have yet to see ms70 gold eagles, which I have always been curious about. 

On the lighter note, I have already seen frog legs sold at the wet market. Tempting to buy some, but I have reservations as I do not know how to cook it..


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Sunday, February 12, 2012

Barney at Dinosaurs Alive!

Tuesday this week, we went to Lim Ket Kai Center to see the Dinosaurs Alive exhibits. Lili and River enjoyed the exhibit very much.. But then, there are other kids who got scared of the Dinos..
Good thing Barney was there to make them calm down.. Well, kids will always be kids-- 

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Great Time for a Ceramic Ring

There are many people that work hard with their hands. There are many jobs that require physical labor and for you to use your hands a lot to accomplish your work. If you are married you want to be able to wear a wedding band that will always look good and will hold up to your tough jobs. If you fall in to this category you might want to look into getting a ceramic ring. These rings are made from some of the best metal in the world. The name might give you the impression that they aren’t as tough as they are, in fact you might even think these rings would be fragile. This is not a correct assumption. These rings can break but they are very hard to scratch. So if you are working a lot with your hands it is a wise choice to go with ceramic wedding bands Ceramic is a lot newer to the wedding industry than tungsten jewelry but it is making a lot of people happy. People find that a black ceramic ring is so much superior to a black tungsten ring. Black tungsten is simply a tungsten ring that is coated a with pvc coating. This coating has a propensity to wear off. It also looks old and worn when it wears off. The good thing about a black ceramic ring is that it is black all the way through it. So it will never fade or wear off. It is better looking and lasts much longer.

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Friday, February 10, 2012

Cake Journey in Butuan City

I have finally visited Margie's in Butuan City.. I was there last week until Sunday, and I was actually in cake heaven. Not only Margie's but the other cake shops as well. Call it, the cake journey in Butuan City, lol. Well, what good is having a sweet tooth when you do not explore the sweetest possibilities, right? So from Margie's, I was able to taste the Margie's Cookie Monster Cake, as well as the Margie's Sans Rival----
Apart from this, we also got to taste Margie's Thai Rice, I forgot the name, which is actually my cousin's favorite. I love Margie's... The place is really nice. Cozy, intimate and the staff are well trained. They are even very nice and most importantly, they are polite. Of course, the food makes them all stand out. I swear, I will go back to Margie's when I go back to Butuan.. hmm.. Until next trip!

The next day, we decided to go to St. Joseph Cathedral, and attend the first Friday mass. Soon after, we headed to Red Apple. The food at Red Apple in Butuan City had always been commendable. I have often tasted treats from them because my aunt usually buys pasalubong from them. But that day we dropped by, was my first time to dine there. The staff were NOT nice. I didn't like how they answer questions, while the cashier was too nosy.  

Anyhow, I liked Red Apple Casava Pie and the Red Apple Sacher Torte that we ordered. Unfortunately, I find their drinks too expensive. Imagine, that sakto size for P 18?

Anyway, since food is nice at Red Apple, I could actually NOT stop patronizing them. But since service is bad, and the staff are not that friendly, I will not go back to dine there again. Maybe just buy some food, take it home and that's it. The ambiance there is not that good too. It's pricey, but it's not at all worth the price. It is just like a fastfood center only, the servers at Red Apple are  not cautious of how they treat their guests. So instead of me ordering a birthday cake for my cousin, I did not. Which is actually good because I would not be able to discover Baker's Joy.

Baker's Joy in Butuan City is probably second to Margie's. At least if I will rank all three cake shops in Butuan City. At nine in the morning of the 4th, we went to Baker's Joy in M. Calo Street and the moment we entered the place, I loved all the delicious aromas coming from their kitchen. And the cake display is full, and fresh. Upon seeing two of my favorites, we immediately ordered Baker's Joy Nelusco Cake and Baker's Joy Brazo de Mercedes. It was a heavenly morning for me and my sister. Sweet breakfast, if I may add. Then my sister said we should try their brownie, and it was a delight. 

For my cousin, we bought her Baker's Joy Double Chocolate Cake. It was amazingly perfect. Chocolate goodness that is not too sweet nor overpowering. What's even more delightful is the fact that the cakes and pastries at Baker's Joy are not expensive at all. Oh, and the staff at Baker's Joy are wonderful. They were courteous and helpful. I wish Red Apple would follow suit and train their staff similar to Margie's and Baker's Joy.. 

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Thursday, February 02, 2012

Our Neighbor

My neighbor was asking my brother for some wire ducts to use in their home. Since we have not returned to Balulang after Sendong, my brother has not been able to give him his request. I pity this meighbor of ours because they have loaned a huge amount of money for capital as they have just opened a new business before Sendong ravaged the city.

When Sendong hit our place, their makeshift store inside their home were all washed out because the grills and their fence collapsed. Even their refrigerator had been lost. So in time of recovery, they were only able to recover a few things, but not their bread and butter.

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