Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter! Believe! Experience! Rejoice!

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Best Outdoor Birthday Party Planning Tips

If your kid was lucky enough to have a birthday which tends to fall during a seasonably warm and sunny day, the party possibilities are endless. Outdoor parties not only keep the mess out of your house (the one you just re-carpeted), they burn off all that energy children have in such abundance, especially once cake and candy enter the equation. Here are some tips for planning the best-ever, sure-to-be-talked-about-for-years-to-come outdoor kids’ shindig.

Variations on a Theme

Does your child love a particular outdoor activity or hobby? Think outside the usual Disney character theme party and try something that will get you and your child’s imagination off and running as far as decorations, activities and food. Does she have a green thumb? A gardening party on the lawn with green grass in a long, rectangular terra cotta planter would make an adorable table runner, plus gloves, packets of seeds and little shovels for favors.

Take Advantage of all the Space

Since they’re outdoors, the kids will have tons of room to just run around and be silly. Encourage that with games, like a neighborhood-wide scavenger hunt, a sprinkler or Slip n’ Slide, or even plan an entire afternoon of Kid Olympics activities, with events that are more humorous (“get across the finish line on anything but two feet”) than competitive.

Go-the-Extra-Mile Favors

When the kids go home with awesome favors, you take on “cool family” status in the eyes of children and adults. It could be as simple as inexpensive name labels for kids to put on all their toys or books (who doesn’t love marking their territory?), Chinese take-out boxes filled with at-home craft projects or even little gift certificates for a free drink or cheeseburger at a fast food chain. If it’s genuinely useful, chances are they’ll love it.

Celebrating Easter Sunday In Baguio

A Baguio resident like me would certainly want to celebrate the Holy Week peacefully holed in her, err, house.  Traffic is everywhere!  Plus, it has been consistently raining in the afternoons.  I did the mandatory Visita Iglesia, though, but I missed going to the Mt. Sto. Tomas Stations of the Cross.  I would probably go up there next month.  Hopefully, there won't be a great crowd anymore.

Hopefully, too, the city would be back to normal tomorrow!  What a Blessed Sunday to celebrate the Risen Lord! Here are some of the places where you can bring the whole family:

Hill Station at the Casa Vallejo

Enjoy a hearty Easter Sunday Lunch Buffet at Hill Station located at Casa Vallejo, Upper Session Road, Baguio City.

So looking forward to the pastel Easter cake!

Citylight Hotel 
located at 245 General Luna Road, Baguio City
(074) 442 8080

Camp John Hay
Loakan Road
Baguio City

Join Camp John Hay's annual Easter Egg Hunt at the North Wing from 9 AM to 12 PM.  Easter Egg Hunt, games, packed lunch and Easter loot bags and goodies will be given for only P750.00 per person.

Mario's Baguio
Upper Session Road
Baguio City
Tel No (074) 442 4241

Grand Easter Costume Contest
SM City Baguio
located at Luneta Hill
Upper Session Road, Baguio City

Open to all kids 4-12 years old.
1. The contest is on at SM Supermalls nationwide.
2. Promo period is from March 17 to March 31, 2013. This will culminate with a Costume Party on March 31 at 3:00 pm at the corresponding Event Centers of the participating SM Supermalls.
3. To avail of an application form, interested parties must register their kids ( together with their parent/ guardian ) and pay P100 to receive the Easter package

And they will get:
  1. 1pc Bunny Ears
  2. 1pc Easter Basket w/o eggs
During the egg hunt, they can get 1pc Easter Egg from participating tenants for a minimum purchase of P100.

And they will get:
  1. 1pc Bunny Ears
  2. 1pc Easter Basket w/ eggs

4. Qualified participants may get application forms and pre-register starting from March 17 to March 31, 2013 at the Mall Administration Office or at the designated mall registration booth in the mall through the Marketing Department. There will also be an on-site registration which starts at 10am until 2pm on March 31, 2013.
5. Participants will be given stubs after they register. This stub will be presented during the grand costume party in order to confirm their attendance and validate their participation in the contest. Names must be reconciled with mall’s master list of participants. In case the stub is lost, a valid ID must be presented.
6. Kids must be dressed in their best Easter bunny costume. Participants may choose to join only one of the three categories:
                        Cutest Bunny Costume
                        Most Colorful Easter Carnival Costume
                        Wackiest Easter Carnival Costume
7. Costume Party will start at 3:00pm and will culminate with the announcement of the costume contest winners.
8. Costumes will be judged according to the following criteria:

                        Adherence to the theme   30%
                        Creativity                         30%
                        Stage Presence                 20%
                        Audience impact               20%
                        TOTAL                           100%

9. The highest scoring costume per category will win. In case of a tie, judges will discuss and decide who will win in the particular category. A participant may only win once.
10. Prizes which are up for grabs:
Cutest Bunny Costume                                        P3000 worth of SM Gift Certificates (valid for 1yr)
Most Colorful Easter Carnival Costume                 P3000 worth of SM Gift Certificates (valid for 1yr)
Wackiest Easter Carnival Costume                        P3000 worth of SM Gift Certificates (valid for 1yr)

11. The announcement of winners and awarding of prizes will take place after the costume party. Participants must be present during the announcement of winners. Claim certificates will be given to the winners upon declaration.
12. Prizes can be claimed at the Mall Administration Office of the corresponding participating mall within sixty (60) days of awarding upon presentation of claim certificates and valid ID of the parent/guardian.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Childhood Baguio City Memories

Before there were dream summer travel destinations like Bohol, Boracay, Coron and Batanes, there is no place that makes you wax nostalgic but Baguio City.  After all, practically everyone has fond memories of the City of Pines.  Your mom and dad may have spent their honeymoon here.  You may have hiked its camping trails, rode a white pony with pink mane at Wright Park, went boating at the Burnham Lake, played mini-golf and indoor skating at Camp John Hay, and listened to wonderful music and danced the night away at the Spirits Disco.
Photo by Vince Suclad of Mukha ng Baguio

I have been born in Baguio, lived my whole life here and have seen it through its up and downs, its best and its worst.  I have experienced living in fear, wondering in absolute horror if the earth will swallow me and my family during the 1990 earthquake.  
Music defined my teendom in this city.  It used to have lots of rockin’ dance clubs and videokes.  I remember sneaking out with my cousins to hang out at an old house converted to a dance club and named Spirits Disco.  They absolutely had the best dance music by disc jockeys with the best dj mixers. My cousins and I go crazy as we scream at the music, lose ourselves to the beat and even dance on top of the giant speakers and ledges.  We never got to the point where we tried to find out if the stories about “Spirits Disco” are true, because we did spend our childhood running away from that old house because people claimed it was haunted.  And we never did see twisted ghost reflections on the disco mirrors or that old woman who will suddenly appear, seemingly out of of place, and tell you, “It is late. Why are you here?”.  But we did realize why it was called “Spirits”, but it sure did not stop us from going there, just because of its absolutely wonderful dance music. 
Sadly, “Spirits Disco” has to give way to progress and that old house was torn down.  I sure would like to find out if those old souls will stay in that new building.  I was trying to look for a free photo of the old Spirits online, but the only one I saw has a copyright clause.  You could try googling its image though.  It sure looked like a creepy haunted house.
A lot of people are saying that Baguio has lost its charm, but I believe that Baguio will still take your breath away.  

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Private Domain Registration

Filipino actress-TV host Kris Aquino’s official website, was hacked Saturday afternoon, with a large banner blocking her website with the words “We are Anonymous”, complete with a headless guy in a suit as logo. 


Her images on her site with products she endorses have also been vandalized. I am sure most of you know about the latest controversy she is in, and a lot of you probably have a say on this. but this made me think. 


Outside of the Kris Aquino-James Yap controversy. 

What if your website or your entire digital life would be wiped out by hackers?  

I mean, it happens. 

And it must be horrifying. 

Because these hackers can systematically lock you out of your website, your e-mail, your social media accounts, and even your iPhone and other digital gadgets. 

One of the easy ways they can get your vital information is by performing a whois search on your personal domain. 

And one of the ways you can protect yourself is getting your own private domain registration. 

What is private domain registration? 

Registering your domain name requires that the contact details related to the name should be published in a Whois database which is publicly accessible. Whois provides information related with domain names and IP addresses which could include the contact information of the registrant. 

Which means your personal data, including your e-mail, telephone/cellphone numbers and even your home address will be open to the public. 

You will be vulnerable to calls from telemarketers and spam mails. And it is horrible to even think about strangers knowing your home address. 

Private domain registration will mask any personal and vital information other than those required by domain name registries. When someone will look up for you domain name, they won’t see any personal contact information. 

Giving you privacy and peace of mind.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Where To Stay In Baguio City on Holy Week/Vacation


Baguio City is gearing up for the Holy Week, wherein the city is expecting tourists to arrive in busloads.  It has never been busier, except the Panagbenga, maybe.  

Where To Stay in Baguio City

The city is also a great place to visit in the cooler months of November to February.


Kamiseta Hotel
20 Brgy Lualhati, Ignacio Villamor St. Baguio City
Telephone: (074)442-4613/+639217612872/+639153846987

Travelite Express Hotel
Shuntug St. cor F. Bautista Drive, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

El Cielito Inn
50 Engineers Hill North Drive, Baguio City

Microtel by Wyndham Baguio
Upper Session Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

Ridgewood Residence
Juan Felipe, Mines View Park, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Hotel Supreme
113 Magsaysay Avenue (Annex Phase1), Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Hotel Supreme Convention Plaza
111 Magsaysay Avenue, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Prince Plaza Hotel
17 Legarda Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

Golden Pine Hotel
Carino corner Yandoc Streets, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

AIM Conference Center Baguio Hotel
Igorot Lodge, Camp John Hay, Baguio, Philippines

Baguio Burnham Suites Hotel
No.6 Kisad Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 

Albergo Hotel
No. 1 Villamor Drive, Brgy. Lualhati, Outlook Drive, Baguio, Philippines

Hotel Elizabeth Baguio
1 J. Felipe Street corner Gibraltar Road, Mines View Park, Baguio, Philippines

Hotel Veniz
One Abanao Street, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

Heritage Mansion
Kisad Road thru Abanao Extension Corner del Pilar Street, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Tiptop Vacation Homes
70A, Ambuklao Road, Simsim Compound, Tiptop, Pacdal, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Paladin Hotel
136 Abanaao Extension, Corner Carino Street, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Eurotel Baguio
123 Abanao Extension Barangay Rizal Park, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Casa Vallejo Hotel
Upper Session Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

Hollywood Drive-In Hotel
Kilometer Marcos Highway, Marcos Highway, Baguio, Philippines

Baguio Holiday Villas
No.10 Legarda Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Safari Lodge
191 Leonard Wood Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Citylight Hotel
245 Upper General Luna Road,
Baguio City Proper,
Baguio, Philippines

Chalet Baguio
Upper Military Cutoff Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

Mountain Lodge Hotel and Restaurant
27 Leonard Wood Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Inn Rocio
68 Kisad Road, Roces, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Skyrise Hotel
18 Dominican Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

Hotel Henrico - Legarda
Legarda Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

Hotel Henrico - Kisad
#35 B Montinola Subdivision Kisad Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Green Valley Baguio Hotel and Resort
Sto. Tomas Road, Green Valley Village, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Azalea Hotels & Residences Baguio
7 Leonard Wood Loop, Brgy. Manuel Roxas, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Le Monet Hotel
Ordonio Drive, Camp John Hay, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Villa Silvina Hotel and Restaurant
15 Outlook Drive (Behind Presidential Mansion House), Outlook Drive, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Baguio Vacation Apartments
Baguio Pines Garden Subdivision No28 Munoz Drive,
Km.4, Asin Circumferential Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

Hotel Villa Rosal
General Luna corner Magsaysay Avenue, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Iggy's Inn
# 25-A South Drive, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Hotel Cosmopolitan
1 Bokawkan Road corner Naguilian Road (near City Hall), Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Villa Cordillera
6 Outlook Drive, Outlook Drive, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Mines View Park Hotel
1 Apostol St. corner Outlook Drive,Baguio City Benguet, Mines View Park, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Manhattan Suites
Corner Brawer Road # 37 Roman Ayson St. , Campo Filipino, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Villa Mia Hotel and Apartelle
8 Dominican Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

C Boutique Hotel
No. 5, Arellano Corner, Moran Street, Barangay Gibraltar, Mines View Park, Baguio, Philippines 2600

City Travel Hotel
15 Kisad Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Upstairs Bed & Bath
GSP Building, Leonard Wood Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

The Home Christian Inn
53 Legarda Road, its the Sweetmates building, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Ibay Zion Hotel
North Outlook Drive, Mines View Park, Baguio, Philippines 2600

City Center Hotel
45 Session Road, MPB Building, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Hotel Caterina
# 1 Labsan St. cor. Naguilian Rd (Beside Justice Hall), Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

Starwood Hotel
1 Kisad Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

Gardenville Hotel
Green Valley Village, Sto. Tomas, Green Valley Village, Baguio, Philippines

Garden Villas
Green Valley Village, Sto. Tomas Road, Green Valley Village, Baguio, Philippines 2600

High Point Boutique Inn and Restaurant
#1 Amistad Road, corner Kennon Rd, Camp 7, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Lyn's DoDropInn
84 Proper Lourdes Subdivision, Middle Road Baguio City (3rd House after BOMBO Radio Station), Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

De Castro Vacation House
Cruz Del Heights Subdivision, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Agreeable Family Baguio Suites
168 Barangay Hall Road, Lourdes Proper Subdivision, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Baguio Guest House Camp 7
317 Montecillo Road, Camp 7, Baguio City, Camp 7, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Prestige Vacation Apartments
Bonbel Condominium, 1 Navy Base Extension Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Baguio Lani's Place
No.143 Doclas Cario Village, Simsim Compound, Tiptop Ambuklao,, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Pine Breeze Cottages
40 Bokawkan Road corner P. Burgos Street, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

1896 Bed and Breakfast
47 Kisad Road, Montinola Subdivision, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Dream Transient Rooms
RKC Building, KM 4 Marcos Highway, Marcos Highway, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Marian Palazz Hotel
38 Military Cut-Off, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Jefrell Apartments
130 Sta. Escolastica Village, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Venus Parkview Hotel
19 Kisad Road, Burnham Park, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Paragon Hotel and Suites
14-16 Otek Street, Rizal Monument Area (near Burnham Park), Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

Newtown Plaza Hotel
42 C.M. Recto Street corner Leonard Wood Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

Arc Residences
8 Bareng Drive, Bakakeng, Bakakeng, Baguio, Philippines 2600

La Casa Bianca
Leonard Wood Road, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines

CV bed n bath
unit 402 sunnyside bldg, # 9 T. Alonzo st baguio city, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

RFT Building Kayang Extension Naguillan Road Baguio City, Baguio City East, Baguio, Philippines 2600

St.Patrick Village Baguio
88 Paterno Street, South Drive, Camp John Hay, Baguio, Philippines

Sunflower Vacation House
70A Ambuklao Road Simsim Compound Tiptop, Pacdal Baguio City Benguet 2600 Philippines, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Grand Sierra Pines Hotel
43 North Outlook Drive, Barangay Gibraltar, Mines View Park, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Jetti and Jadi Vacation home
#1 Torres St. Mines View Baguio City, Philippines, Mines View Park, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Le Monette B&B
112 Bright Red Street corner Dr. Carnio Ext. Lower QM, Baguio City Proper, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Dad's Big Transient House
Blk 18 Lot 4 Richview Square Subdivision Bakakeng Road North, Bakakeng, Baguio, Philippines 2600

Travelite Express Hotel

Friday, March 22, 2013

Hiring A Moving Company


Our office’s Document Processing Division is moving to a new building by the first week of next month.  Nerves are frayed and tempers are short.  It is no secret that although moving to a new place is exciting and promises new beginnings, it can also be very stressful. There are so many things to organize and things to get rid off, especially if you are talking about an office division dedicated to document retention and processing.  Just figuring out which to keep and which to toss (and we are talking here about practically truckloads of documents) is enough to drive one crazy.

I bet the move will be much easier by hiring a professional moving company dedicated to packing and transporting their office furniture, fixtures and documents to the new office. Since the transfer also involves numerous documents, it would be best to rent a warehouse for the meantime where these can be stored, like this one storage/entreposage montrĂ©al company which offers secure, air-conditioned warehouses where anything like office equipment, valuables and documents can be stored.  These warehouses can only be accessed by contacting them first, which makes the documents very safe in their warehouses.

Hiring a professional demenagement/moving company is not a walk in the park, though.  They need to zero in on a reliable company that will handle every valuable document and furniture with utmost care.  Getting recommendations from friends and colleagues won’t hurt.  Likewise, making sure these companies they are choosing from are properly registered with government agencies and are reliable and reputable should be seriously considered. 

They still have a week to pack their things and decide if they really need to hire a moving company.  Me, I am looking forward to going to their office  building inauguration. I heard it would be a whole day and night of song, dance and food.

Samsung Vs Apple

I don't think you could call me a gadget geek.

Especially if you see my cellphone.

I have a Samsung Galaxy Chat, which used to be my daughter's, which retails for like around P2,000.00.  I  used to have a Sony Ericsson C905 (which has a really good camera, too) before its keyboard conked on me.

I included a link just in case you want to see how ancient my current phone looks like (at least, it does not have an antenna hehe and it fell like a million times and it is still working).

In fact, this phone is usually in silent mode (I just keep it in my pocket to feel its buzz), because it is embarrassing to bring it out especially in seminars where everybody is bored and  tinkering with iPhones and tablets (and oh, another thing.  I always bring my Kindle Keyboard and an office mate said, "Ayy, it has a keyboard and it is in black and white?  What is that, Ate*?" I am so tempted to say, "Malaking blackberry." **)

But, it does serve its purpose.  I can text and I can make and receive calls.  That was how a phone was decades ago anyway.  And I can surf using Opera Mini (it does have its WiFi naman).

But, just in case I get extra funds (which is a remote possibility because I have a future agenda now), can you help me decide between a Samsung Galaxy and an Apple iPhone please?

Allison Morris sent me this infographic.  I want to hear your thoughts!
Samsung vs Apple Infographic
Source:MBA Online

I am considering the iPhone, though, or should I just get an iPad Mini and keep my old Samsung because it still works anyway?

Or should I just forget these gadgets and invest in stocks instead :)?

*Ate-Older Sister/Older Woman
**Malaking Blackberry-Big Blackberry

Thursday, March 21, 2013

On Summer and HVAC Repair


It has been seasonably warm the past two days, with clear skies and no sign of rain, which is making me seriously consider checking if the plumbing, heating, ventilation and air conditioning are working properly in the house. Seems like the perfect time to be making repairs since the weather is good, right?

Home is where the heart is, and keeping the home cool, fresh and comfortable is very important.  During the extremely warm summer season, it is necessary to have an air conditioning unit and on the cold winter days, a heater is of absolute necessity.  

This is especially true to residents of Canada in the Calgary region who experience long, cold winters and short, warm summers.  Being on the lookout for the best air conditioner, heat repair, and plumber calgary company to do maintenance and repair on their units is of utmost importance. An untimely breakdown of even just one unit may cost them a lot more, especially if the entire unit has to be replaced. 
Thousands of dollars have been unnecessarily spent on poor maintenance of heater and air conditioning units.  A reputable heat, ventilation, and air conditioning or hvac calgary company is indeed advisable since they can be assured that service of utmost quality is being rendered and all repairs are done properly.

A properly installed and maintained system is an investment that can reward you with years of comfort and efficiency.  Always be on the lookout for that right service contractor who will do the job for you effectively and efficiently.  You will definitely have trouble-free years with your plumbing and HVAC units.  

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Being A Teen Mom: Should You Choose To Drink?

Image Source:MTV

Being a teen mom certainly comes with its obstacles and balancing motherhood and the teen years can be extremely difficult. Many teen pregnancies are not planned, so there is natural urgency for the teen mom to want to participate in teen activities and even engage in risky behaviors such as smoking or experimenting with drugs or drinking alcohol.

If you are a teen mom, you may be conflicted on how to balance your pregnancy and motherhood with your former teen life. Part of you wants to still hang out with your friends, stay up all night, go to the prom, and chase boys, but another part of you knows that you're now responsible for another life. It can be extremely hard to miss out on things your peers are doing, especially if you have a curiosity about getting drunk or high.

Many teens experiment with alcohol through their teen years, but typically grow out of it once they have reached adulthood. Teens drink alcohol or use drugs for various reasons, whether that is to look cool, fit in or just because they enjoy the feeling. Whatever that reason is, it could be extremely dangerous for a new mom or pregnant teen to consume alcohol.

Understanding The Consequences

There are several consequences of drinking alcohol while being a teen mom. Take for instance if you are breast feeding, alcohol can contaminate breast milk which can be extremely harmful to the baby. Make sure you wait at least 2 hours before breast feeding a baby if you're going to consume alcohol. There are also breast milk testing strips that can check for any traces of alcohol that may still be left.

Another thing to consider when drinking as a young mother is not knowing your limits. If you are new to drinking, it would not be wise to consume shots quickly or mix alcohol with any form of prescription pills. Doing so could end up in a possible overdose or cause you to become extremely ill. Also, if at some point you black out, you will have no control over what happens to you next. You could possibly be put in a car with someone who has been drinking and plans to drive. All of these actions could put your life and ultimately your child's life in jeopardy.

Always think of the consequences of drinking before making your decisions to engage in these behaviors. It may seem innocent or fun but think about the motherly functions you need to accomplish on a daily basis. What if you're drunk and fall over with your baby in your arms? What if you baby needs is choking and your response skills are slowed down from being highly intoxicated? Are any of these reasons worth it for a night of drinking? You are now responsible for a child, it may be hard to deal with it at times, but there are plenty of blogs or support communities that can help young teenagers deal with pregnancy and raising their baby. Talk to your parents or a responsible adult about some of the feelings and emotions you are currently going through and if you make the choice to drink or try alcohol, do so in moderation.

Melissa currently writes for Saint Jude Retreats, which is an alternative to traditional alcohol treatment. As well as writing for St. Jude’s, Melissa enjoys writing about topics that include health and relationships.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

She Is Not Touching It!


Blessed Sunday!

Protein Powder For Weight Loss


In my personal blog, I wrote about my New Year’s Resolutions and how I failed, again, to fulfill two of them (one is to run three to four kilometers a day and the other is to lose ten pounds by the tenth of February or what I called my “ten on ten”).

Instead, I gained back the ten pounds I lost doing the South Beach Diet last year.  I know.  I fell in love with carbs again.  Carbs never fail to ruin my diet…

I really need a diet to jump-start my weight loss, and trying to stay away from carbs without a fixed meal plan prepared for me is extremely hard.

I do plan to try another diet which I did a couple of years ago which involved protein powder. I kid not. Protein powder can aid in weight loss.

Instead of making a shake using protein powder, however, you make “protein water”. You just need a scoop of the powder to add to your water or tea.  Let’s face it.  You can only eat so much boiled eggs and meat slices until you get literally sick of them and long for carbs again.  Sipping your protein water within the day before meals can curb your cravings and make you feel full.

If you intend to jumpstart your weight loss (like me), you can do the One-Day Diet. This diet is kind of harsh, because it is sort of a fast (maybe, you can do this on Holy Week).

Regular fasting requires only water, which makes people doing the fast extremely hungry.  With the protein powder power added to the water which you drink every two hours though, you will never feel hungry. This diet makes you alternate days of eating normally and days with just having the Protein Water every two hours.  I know it is quite extreme, especially if you are that kind of person (like me) who loves something to chew on.  Drinking protein water every two hours for the whole day practically makes you full though.  You won’t feel hungry at all.  The downside is when you go to work and people will wonder why you keep drinking those shakers.

What makes it easy is that you just do it for a day.  The next day, you will be back to your normal eating habits (although since you may have lost some weight, you will be more mindful of your eating).  Then, on the next day, you go back to your protein water every two hours again.  If you feel that drinking your protein water is a chore and you got tired of the taste, you can always purchase protein powders in different flavors.

I am not so sure of the long-term benefit.  The time I tried it two years ago, I did lose weight.  For jump-starting my weight loss, I am hoping it will work again. 

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Thrifty Chic: Ukay-Ukay Shopping 101

Ukay-ukay stores (thrift stores) are no longer just the shopping place for the cash strapped. These shops are places where you can discover those beautiful pieces that can help you create fashionable looks that can't be found in any mall! 

Unearth those hidden treasures among those piles of vintage clothing and experience the joys of ukay-ukay shopping by following these tips:

Know what you are looking for.  

Ukay-ukay stores come in rows and can be overwhelming!  Have in mind the outfit or look you want to go for before you go shopping.  That way, getting that tie-dyed shirt, flare pants and hippie bag for your seventies retro look will be a whole lot easier. 

Have an eye for details.

Sometimes, I do look for brands, since they come a lot cheaper than the ones sold in malls.  However, details are what make clothes interesting.  Look for interesting details, one-of-a-kind prints, delicate embroidery or unusual buttons.  

Try it on.  

Always try on the outfits before purchasing.  I have a cousin who has a mountain-load of thrift shop clothes (her closet is about to collapse!) she has never worn!  Don't rely on the size written on the clothing tag.  The clothing may have stretched or shrunk.  Also, that vintage clothing with the L size may be the S size today. 

Be patient.  

You need a load of patience to go through every item if you want to snag a real find. 

Goods are sold "as is".  

Most thrift stores don't accept returns so be sure your purchases are in good condition before you leave the store.  Watch out for stains in the armpits, chest and other areas that are easily visible.  Check zippers, seams and button holes for damage.

Learn the art of haggling.  

Ukay-ukay stores give you price cuts, especially if it is their "buena mano"  (first sale),  you are buying a lot of items, you are buying when business is slow (I actually snagged a leather jacket worth 1,500.00 for 100  pesos only on a particularly stormy day), and you are makulit.

Leave the kids at home.  

For ordinary shopping mortals like us, it is best to be focused on getting the best finds and not on your child's tantrum or her allergic reaction to dust.

Finally, remember that ukay-ukay is also called wagwagan-as in wagwag off the dust.  So don't forget your hand sanitizer gel or baby wipes for clean up afterwards.

I will be writing later about thrift shopping in Baguio, so watch for it :)