Christmas 2017

Thoughts After a Blessed Christmas – From Having Zero Balance in My Wallet to Having Almost P200K

It’s the day after Christmas and this month has been such a whirlwind of a ride! I work 16 hours a day now and sometimes even more (as a CFO to our mushroom farm, a full-time business development manager to a new foreign client, a virtual assistant to another foriegn client, and a social media manager to 2 other long-time foreign clients as well); I am surprisingly in a long distance relationship with Mahal and baby Tuz for 4 nights a week (which I never thought was possible) just so I can focus on work and making money and still be able to sleep (they live in the farm during weekdays while I’m left alone in our tiny pad down the mountains where there’s stronger internet signal); I am zombie during weekends coz that’s the time my babies are home. And from U.S. Time Zone, I immediately shift back to Philippine time so we can run errands and be together; In short, I am tired. BUT… I’ve never been as fulfilled. I feel like all the talents that God has given me are being put to good use and not just for the welfare of my family, but to help make the lives of the people around us a little bit better as well. Here’s my story… (More like FB story coz I don’t have the time now to curate photos from the original album so I’m curating them from my FB posts… you can friend request me here:

So, I am mostly happy these days. I think I’m doing well despite the fact that our disposable savings got wiped out three weeks ago (which shouldn’t have happened if someone had not let her huge check bounce — I’ve already let go of this person  but if God intends me to, I will still deal with her the moment I have the funds to file estafa and BP22 cases against her) and because we never really anticipated the exact costs that setting up a mushroom farm would entail. So I had to take a full-time job in addition to my other part-time jobs to help augment our income while the mushroom farm is still not earning.

Xmas 2017 Blessings Xmas 2017 Blessings

And on those rare moments that I do feel sad for one reason or another (I’m only human), I keep going back to the things I learned in the book Rules of Wealth, in the teachings of Robert Kiyosaki (Rich Dad, Poor Dad), and all those other self-help and financial books I only get to read when I’m in the loo (yep, I am THAT busy). I learned that I’m still on the right track when it comes to my life and my finances despite the many mistakes I made. And at the age of almost 40, I really should be!

Let me expound a bit…


Investing in Insurance Plans in my early 20s are now paying off in my 30’s and beyond

In 2000, I was only 22 years old then, I got a 10-year insurance plan with the now debunked Family First. Good thing that I encashed its principal amount after ten years when my policy contract ended. I set aside that money in another savings account where it can continue earning. Four years before that In 2008, I retired from government service and got a total of more than a million peso in retirement. I rarely splurge and I am resourceful when it comes to finding other ways to save and earn more. So whatever extra I have, I invested in the house and other smaller insurance plans. I’ve encashed most of these short-term insurance plans and I got my house fully paid as well.

The last insurance plan that I have is with PhilamLife and it is for 20 years. I got 4 years left since I became a policyholder in 2002, after which, I can encash it for Tuz’s education. But should anything happen to me (like I die for example), then Tuz would end up a millionaire.



I got my house under a ten-year mortgage in 2007. Now that my house has been fully paid since May of this year, I was able to rent it out to foreign tenants. And because of the 8-month rental deposit, they paid me, we were able to set up the mushroom farm. My house will always just be there earning me income as long as there are tenants. Tuz can live there in the future if he wants to. Or we can go back and live there again. But because the mushroom agri-biz we’ve set up is totally changing the way we live, we can just have my house as our resthouse whenever we are in Manila. Or we can just keep renting it out. Either way, it’s a source of income and joy and whatever I invested in there in the past is now paying me back.



Before the mushroom farm, I delved into soap makingspa making, online clothes selling, TV acting and other entrepreneurial endeavors. As for the mushroom house and the whole organic vegetable farm we’re setting up, it will keep growing and keep earning with the possibility of making us millionaires (maybe even billionaires?) God-willing. It’s a really good investment.

Mushroom Growing House



As for my talents and skills, I grew up in the academic world winning one scholarship after another so I can keep honing my God-given talents and skills and because of that, I never run out of opportunities to explore that can get me paid.

So that particular week where we had 0  money in our wallets, we didn’t worry so much. If worse comes to worst, I have a good singing voice — I will sing at a bar! Lol! I eventually got paid with bonuses by my clients, I’ll be encashing the rental check payment from my tenants today (hopefully their check won’t bounce) and I’m collating all the earnings our mushroom farm made (for now, it’s enough to pay the salaries of the people we hired). From 0 pesos in our wallets to a 6-digit income, just a little bit more than enough to get all bills and payables paid (hello credit card!) and spread cheer to the people we care about.

Xmas 2017 Blessings

Oh, plus I got that chiropractic mattress with continuous spring  I’ve been wanting since last year to help heal my backache! I bought it as a gift for Mahal and myself. Sleep is our only luxury these days so we might as well help make it great! ❤

Chiropractic bed

By next month (which is the new year), it would be a big jump from where we are now should the mushroom farm keep on growing, should my clients keep paying for my services, and should my tenants keep on renting.

For more of our mushroom farm adventure, please visit our public album on Facebook:

So what’s different this Christmas?

  • I have been working more hours than ever, both as a mom and as a provider.
  • I’ve spent less on personal shopping, almost zero I think. Whatever extra money we earned, we used it to set up the mushroom farm and to make sure that our people are well-compensated for their hard work, effort, dedication and contribution to the realization of our dream. As the saying goes, “Take care of your people, and your people will take care of you.”
  • We live in a much smaller home but the land we roam is so much bigger.

tiny pad

tiny pad

farm life

From afar, you can see where we’ve set up our dragon fruit farm .. yes those poles. ^_^

farm life

  • If before, I’d spend a substantial amount of money for noche buena for just us three that can last us for a week of meals, now we spend the same amount but for more number of people. The food lasts only for a day or two but more people get to eat.
  • Before, I used to enjoy our 7-foot Christmas tree back home with all its twinkle lights and decorations.

our Christmas tree in my house in Alabang last year which is now being used in my brother’s house

  • Now, we only have a tiny P45-peso Christmas tree with tiny Christmas balls and angels hanging from its leaves. But there are more gifts under it to be given to people who helped us set up our mushroom farm dream.

our tiny P45 Christmas tree in the background at the farmhouse; photo taken on Christmas eve

  • This year, our wallets ran out of disposable income. It’s only now that it’s recovering again after accepting a job offer. But our hearts are forevermore so full of love, gratitude and cheer.
  • From dreaming something big last January without knowing where we’ll get our strength, our funds, our courage…to making it happen towards the end of the year.  Dreams, coupled with hard work, grit, and perseverance, do come true for God is so great and dear!

Last September, we did an ocular of the area where we’ll set up the dragon fruit farm. At first, the terrain was still a bit flat then we had to go through the lush coffee forest of Mahal. Beyond that is a hilly terrain where we had to walk what felt like a million steps, lol! It was all so worth it because the view of the cliff with the falls from afar was breathtaking!


Construction of our mushroom growing house started Sept.6!

Mushroom Farm

Because we only had 4 workers (inclusive of 2 carpenters), construction of the mushroom growing house and the rest of the mushroom farm took about 2 months. It’s okay. Slowly but surely is our motto. ^_^

Mushroom Growing House

Our mushroom growing house is finally done! We spent more than P200K (almost P300K actually) for everything… the growing house, the mixing-bagging house, the inoculation room, the incubation room, all the things needed, labor fee and food of our workers, etc. Thank you, God, nakaraos din!

Mushroom Farm First Day of Operation Celebration

Nov. 15, 2017 – Our Mushroom Farm’s First Day of Operations!!! We had Mahal’s goat slaughtered for that evening’s feast for good luck. Thank you, God, for the blessings!

This is the mixing-bagging-sterilization-incubation areas after it was constructed.

Mushroom Inoculation and Packaging Room

Even as the operations of our mushroom farm started, we had an inoculation and packaging room built as well.

Our very first mushroom harvest

Our very first harvest beginning of the month! We only had 324 fruiting bags then. Currently, we already have 648 and more bags are continuously being bagged and incubated every day. We’re thinking of hiring more people. We’re projecting that by February, we’ll have 10,000 fruiting bags in the mushroom growing house and harvesting an average of 70 kilos a day of several kinds of mushrooms (colorful oyster mushrooms, ganoderma, shitake, etc!)


My Takeaway

Life is amazing! Just keep enjoying your existence while being cautious about where you put your money, playing in this huge playground we call life and maximizing your God-given talents and gifts! We never know when our time on this Earth will end (like Isabel Granada’s for instance). So whatever God has given you, give it back for His greater glory.

Merry Christmas and have a prosperous and blessed New Year!!!


9 thoughts on “Thoughts After a Blessed Christmas – From Having Zero Balance in My Wallet to Having Almost P200K

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