motherhood comes first

Motherhood Comes First – A Mom’s Rants About Being a Mother to a Hyper Toddler

This blog post is mostly a one long rant so please bear with me…

I was very much excited to write several blog posts about our long Boracay vacation last March. I still am looking forward to writing down all my stories, travel tips and what-have-you but I just don’t know when I’ll find the time. Life just got busier and busier that I didn’t realize it was already April and we are once again preparing for a one long family travel, this time, a fun road trip with my parents from Luzon all the way to Mindanao.

Anyway, going back to life getting busy and all… Continue reading

VALENTINE'S DAY

Valentine’s Day Top Tips for the Luxurious, Budget-Conscious and Parental Kind

It’s the eve of Valentine’s Day. Have you already thought of something special to give to or do with your significant other? Are you one of those people who loves to celebrate the Day of Hearts and make it more meaningful and special for your loved ones? Well, I am one of those people and through the years, I’ve already had my fair share of celebrating the season of love. And because of this, I’ll be sharing with you some of my most favorite Valentine’s Day celebrations that I did in the past, both big and small, expensive and affordable.

This blog post will be divided into three parts with my top 3 tips each so please bear with me. If it’s a a little luxury you need this Valentine’s Day, just read the first part. If you’re the frugal kind and it’s the budget-friendly tips you want, head straight to the second part. If you’re like me who now has a baby / toddler and you’d like a few advices on how you can celebrate Valentine’s with your spouse sans the mess a child brings into the picture, then read the third part.

So let’s begin… Continue reading

travel with baby

How to Travel with a Baby? (A 2016 Travel Recap)

Happy Chinese New Year, everyone!

I took an almost month-long break from blogging to enjoy the first month of the new year. I didn’t work as much, I had some legal stuff to take care of and we headed to exciting adventures as a family. Now that the Chinese New Year has just ended, we’re back home concretizing our new plans and new adventures for 2017. It’s gonna be exciting!

New year, new set of goals and travel plans. Yey! Like I said, we just started traveling again, hence, the super busy schedule we now have — juggling parenthood, business plans, work and leisure. But before I share with you about our current adventures, I want to do a recap first of the travels we did last year through this blog post of knowing how to travel peacefully and enjoyably with a baby. Plus, I still want to share with you one by one those places we visited before that I still haven’t published yet (to be done on some future blog posts). But first things, first…

BACKGROUND

Mahal (my partner) and I have been traveling since we first became friends in 2012. Me, I’ve been traveling since I was 6 years old. My grandfather has this 7-acre farm in Northern Mindanao, we have a 26-hectare ancestral land in Southern Mindanao (2,000 square meters of it are mine, weee!) and my grandfather used to travel a lot for work (he was a lawyer with Ph.D. and was a School Superintendent of Region 10) and he would sometimes bring me to places south of our archipelago during vacation. When I became a self-supporting adult, I would frequent various beaches with my friends. When I retired from government service at the age of 30 and got a fat retirement paycheck, I invested a lot of it and spent some of it on budget travels all over the Philippines and some parts of Asia. Last year, when I was pregnant, we were touring Mindanao, Visayas and Luzon for a month and we even climbed the three levels of Tinuy-an Falls in Bislig Surigao del Sur on my 7th month of pregnancy. Suffice it to say that we love to travel. I believe it’s our only luxury since I’ve already partly given up shopping for new clothes, shoes and accessories ( I used to be a shopaholic in my 20’s and early 30’s and now my clothes are mostly a decade old, lol! Don’t worry, I already did some minor shopping because of a friend’s wedding I recently attended and I plan to shop for some more new stuff before going to our other vacay destinations this year, unless I can find new-looking stuff in my old trunk, hehehe). I haven’t bought anything new using cash in a long time. My handy Citibank Visa takes care of other expenses, hence, the late nights we spend doing work so we can pay all our bills on time. We’re frugal and resourceful that way. After all the monthly bills are paid and there’s extra money left, we spend it on travel. So even when baby Tuz came into our lives, it wasn’t that hard for us to travel. In fact, our lives seem to be much simpler and easier every time we’re on the road heading some place new.

So for those of you who are about to have a baby or already have one and would like to travel peacefully and enjoyably despite the fact that your baby is less than a year old, the tips that I’m about to share with you could be helpful. These tips are not exhaustive though. They’re just based on how we were able to travel with our baby safely, soundly and enjoyably for the first twelve months of his life. Continue reading

2017

Hello 2017! Three Questions to Ask Yourself This New Year…

It’s almost 3AM, Philippine time, on the first day of the new year and this is the first time, in a long time, that I am able to breathe, relax and write down my thoughts… I hope this is a good sign… sort of like saying that the new year will bring me more relaxed moments to just be. *crossing my fingers*

Anyway, the house is now all cleaned up, quiet and dark after a whole day of preparation — running errands, picking up groceries and slaving away in the kitchen so we can all have a feast come media noche. And hurrah! Indeed, we were able to fill our dining table with yummy dishes that I think will last for another week just like our Noche Buena did last Christmas which lasted until New Year’s Eve. Hihihi! We feel so blessed! No more cooking the rest of the week, yey! I’m sure a lot of you can relate.  Continue reading

December

December Thoughts – Confessions of a First Time Pre-Toddler Mom

December is one tough month! Especially for a first time pre-toddler, full-time, work-from-home mom like myself. How does one do it?

Our sleep cycle has gone haywire. We haven’t had 8 hours of straight sleep in weeks since we’ve celebrated Tuz’s first birthday, Tuz has grown more and more active and restless each passing day (or shall we say each passing night because that’s when he is awake from evening til morning the next day), all the other things we wish to do on the side (like make more soaps, blog some more, make business plans, attend seminars, read books or even just a simple day trip somewhere) haven’t been an option lately because we’re already over fatigued from running after Tuz inside and outside of the house and then we try to catch sleep in the afternoon until he wakes us up and then we take turns  taking care of him again, finishing work and doing chores at night. Continue reading

responsibility

How to Take 100% Responsibility For Your Life

A BUSY introduction

I know, I know, I KNOW. It’s been 10 days since my last post and I have so much to share! Before baby Tuz’s first birthday, my life partner, Mahal, and I have been having sleepless nights taking care of work, parental stuff and domestic duties because we wanted to celebrate our baby’s first birthday on the date of his birthday itself, which was the 17th, a Thursday. We could have just decided to have it on a weekend so all our work responsibilities have already been done by that time and we can all relax and enjoy our son’s birthday beach celebration. Well, we did enjoy, but it could have been better. And it’s all because we wanted it celebrated on the birthdate itself, which, now, looking back, has been a semi-terrible idea! Continue reading

birthday cake

Cake Story – Our Baby’s First Birthday Bash

Our precious little miracle from heaven, Baby Tuz, has just turned one. He was born on Nov. 17, 2015 at 11:47 PM after a whole day of a painfully induced labor which still ended in an emergency C-section. Still, Mahal and I are just so overwhelmed right now with so many emotions we couldn’t help but become teary-eyed with happiness… overjoy… disbelief… amazement… plus over fatigue from a full year of being full-time, hands-on, work-from-home parents with no yaya nor helper, just us three all this time. We couldn’t help but wonder how we were able to raise Tuz — a happy, fussy, gimmicky little boy who wears us out every day, every dawn and every single night to the point of insanity but whom we love so, so much!!!

Having said that, my next several posts for this month will be about our little big boy Tuz plus how we celebrated a year of sleepless nights, tremendous joy, mood swings, unexpected blessings and so much more!

Let me start by sharing with you the cake story… Continue reading

baby shower

How Can Introverts Have Baby Showers?

 

BACKGROUND

Around Halloween last year, I was on my last few weeks of pregnancy. Baby Tuz was about to be welcomed to our little family and of course, we couldn’t be any happier and we wanted to celebrate it!

You might not believe it but I I actually googled the phrase “How Can Introverts Have Baby Showers?” Lol! I was to become a first time mom then and I’ve only attended two baby showers in my lifetime (one was for Irene and it was just over lunch among her 4 girlfriends back in early 2000 and the second one was  for Jem 3 years ago organized by her friends). Continue reading

rodrigoDuterte_oath_taking_6-30-16

A Stay-At-Home Mom’s Experience With The Current Duterte Administration

I am a full-time, stay-at-home mom and I seldom go out of the house except for weekly errands and holiday travels. And when we travel, I am busy minding our baby inside the car or busy looking at Waze for directions. Suffice it to say that I am not like most of the Filipino citizens who really experience the changes (some may say grave changes) that have been happening around the country day in and day out since Rodrigo Duterte took his seat as the Philippine President. But for me, as introverted as I am who normally don’t care about politics or what’s going on around the country, I think I have experienced enough so far to say that I have felt the change . Below are my experiences: Continue reading

Halloween

Thoughts This Halloween

I’ve been a lot busier than usual with everything that I had to do (my VA / Virtual Assistant biz, baby stuff, house chores, errands, holiday activities, etc). Our baby Tuz is a lot more active (climbing everywhere he could climb), he easily gets bored now with his old toys (we may need to resell his jumperoo and walker which he only used quite a few times before) and he’s fussier than usual. He cries then laughs then cries again for no apparent reason. We’ve done everything we know until such time that he simply gets tired and takes a nap and then… FREEDOM — for a little while at least, hence this post, before our 11-month old baby wakes up again and our merry-go-round continues. Continue reading