Thursday, February 27, 2014

Sorry Po!

Just a couple of things that won't happen tomorrow...

I know I promised my followers I was going to announce MEMBERS' TREAT dates tomorrow. I just received an email from S&R Marketing that they are holding off announcements until further notice. Apparently, the truck strike is making things difficult for deliveries and such. So yes, no grand announcement tomorrow. Boo. But guess what? S&R has GREAT NEWS for their Early Bird Sale. I really, really want to tell you, but I'd get into trouble if I do. So please do watch this space, I shall announce as soon as I get their go-ahead.

Meanwhile, the giveaway scheduled for this week has been pushed back to next week. I am still looking for a replacement, as the others have been scheduled already. I will update you guys tomorrow.


Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Account Compromised!

It seems a lot of accounts are getting hacked nowadays. I don't know how they do it, but I think I have half a dozen friends whose accounts got compromised in the past week alone. I have the most complicated password ever, and yet, someone got into my mail the other day.

Was it you? LOL!

Anyway, it is time for crazy measures. That same day, I changed my passwords (made it even more complicated) and activated phone verification.

Phone verification is such a hassle. At home, where there is hardly any signal from my mobile provider, I sometimes have to wait a good 3-5 minutes. But! BETTER SAFE THAN SORRY!

Here's how you activate 2-step verification on Google Mail/ Gmail:
1) On your account, go to settings.
2) On settings, click on the Account tab.
3) On accounts, go to change account settings, and click on Other Google Account settings.
4) Then click on the Security tab.
5) Enable 2-step verification by providing a local mobile number, and you're good to go.

Enabling 2-step verification means Google will send you a text (via the mobile phone number you provide) with a numerical code that you have to input each time you log into your Google account. It's usually a 30-second step that needs to be done, but it will help keep your account secure.

Stay safe, everyone!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

#DocMcStuffins Giveaway Winner!

The little boy still has his cough. He's better but it's still there. From the last post, you probably can guess why it hasn't gone away, in spite of medicine and food restrictions. Haha!

Anyway, the Doc McStuffins Purse Giveaway from this post ended last night. Funny thing, because I thought one of my friends (T or J) would win. For a while, only they joined the giveaway. I guess Rafflecopter knows who deserves the Doc McStuffins bag - I had it pick out a winner after lunch. So let me get to the point of this post. WE HAVE A WINNER!

Congratulations, CHRISSIE PERIA! 
You won the purse for Miffy! I hope she loves her new Doc McStuffins bag. 

So yay! I will ship your prize, so expect a message from me tonight. Again, congratulations!

Meanwhile, stay tuned for this week's giveaway!

Monday, February 24, 2014

RL Funnies: GUILTY!

This post was initially part of the last post about being sick. I realized, however, that since that post had a giveaway, I thought I'd post this separately. Not that I want the whole world to know, but I can't resist sharing this tidbit from Friday morning. You'll know what I mean when you read my retelling below. Hehehe.

Photo from
Funny thing that happened Friday morning... (my son will probably kill me for posting this story one day, LOL) I bumped into RL on the way to the bathroom. I suppose he was surprised to see me come out of the bedroom. He probably thought I was still taking a bath. When I walked back into the bedroom, I saw him on A's bed, with his hand in his pants.

K: "What are you doing?!!"
RL: "My tutuy's ouchie..."
K: "Well, don't touch it. It's going to be more painful if you keep touching it."
I wanted to check but knew he wouldn't come near me if I asked to see... So, I dressed up and right before going down to make his bento lunch, I called him near and asked for a hug. He comes and I took the opportunity to check and see what was wrong.
K: (pulling his pants down) "Let me check and see if it's red."
RL: (quickly pulls his pants up) "No!"
K: "But I want to see if we need to put medicine."
RL: (squirms a bit, and hesitates) "No."
K: "Why?!"
RL: (looks at me with guilty eyes) "There's candy!"
So I pull open his underwear and find two squished Trolli Strawberry Puffs inside his briefs, next to his you-know-what!!! He was smuggling candy! We told him he couldn't have any because of his cough. I couldn't stop laughing!!! And RL? Well, he cried (bad Momma).

Hunny, you can't get away with it. You have the same look your dad has when he doesn't tell Momma the truth. LOL!

Ah! The things kids do nowadays! 

Saturday, February 22, 2014


So the little boy has been sick a lot lately. His throat lining must be so thin, it gets scratched easily. Just when I thought we were finally off the nebulizer, the nanny tells me I need to get more Ventolin because he has started coughing again. All he had were mangoes. And he was fine that day. I'm thinking, allergies? I hope not. He loves mangoes!

We haven't been back to see the kids' pediatrician in months. I know, I know, I'm a bad mom. I am blessed to have a doctor/surgeon for a neighbor though, (Hi, Rin and Doc!) and he's my go-to person when it comes to small medical issues. Thank you, Lord, for Doc A!

Hmmm... why do some doctors charge an arm and a leg for services anyway? Just last month, with the Measles outbreak scare, I had called another pediatrician's office (reco'd by a friend) to ask if the kids can go get their shots. I was quoted a whopping amount for it! I need to give up a month's worth of groceries just to get my kids' boosters updated! And to think the neighborhood health centers are giving those shots out for free. I need to seriously invest in Health Insurance. Argh! It's so hard when you're the sole provider. You have to give up one thing to have another.

My mom says health is a great investment, and I shouldn't even think twice when spending for it. You only live once, right? My emergency fund has been put to good use last year. I just hope none of the kids get anything serious this year.

Speaking of doctors, here's a doctor I'm sure your kids love! And she's part of this week's giveaway! Why yes, it's DOC MCSTUFFINS! I know, I'm a few days late (I had to search the attic for it), but better late than... well, next week. LOL!

I sold toys for Christmas last year (a breadwinner's gotta do what a breadwinner's gotta do). This bag came from the second batch of toys my aunt sent from the US. This is original Doc McStuffins merchandise from! Anyway, I've always wanted to use one for a giveaway (given the lack of Doc McStuffins merch in the Philippines), plus I thought it fits the post. The giveaway will end on Monday night, February 24, at 1159PM. I will announce the winner the next day. This giveaway is open to anyone with a Philippine address.

How to join? Just follow what the Rafflecopter app tells you to do. The more options you follow, the more entries you earn.

Good luck!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

On that Road to a #BetterMe

I had typed the first part of this post at an airport, while waiting for my flight. Delayed turn-around flight, apparently. So I had a few hours to spare. I spent it thinking. And writing this (well, part of it). I had time to contemplate, and all these thoughts kept swirling in my head.

A few weeks months (!!!) ago, Kris (aka OCMomInManila) invited me to attend a Better Me event. At first, I didn't really know what to expect, except that it was a SoMoms thing, and Coach Pia Nazareno-Acevedo was speaking. Better Me. At the last minute, I took another look at the invite and noted it was about nurturing relationships with the spouse and children - alright, perfect.

I went to the talk with reservations. I must admit, with all that has happened this past year, my heart had given up. I had already decided that my marriage was, in fact, over. You must be wondering, why now? Why has it taken me this long to wake up. Please read on.

For the past 10 years, I have committed to fight for my family. The last three years saw me fighting a losing battle. My heart was weak. My spirit crushed. I no longer had it in me to go on. Part of me wanted to blame God for being silent. My prayers were left unanswered.

Then right before Christmas of 2012, my spouse came home and asked for forgiveness. Yes, R! I was floored. I didn't know what to make of it. I had been living my days without him in mind, without a prayer for restoration. Yes, you read that right. I was putting up a front - for the past year at least. In my head, I knew I had to keep praying, but my heart didn't have the will nor the desire to go on fighting for him. I brainwashed myself - filled my thoughts with the ugly pieces that made up the conundrum that is my husband.

Two weeks into it, one of our pastors prayed with me and told me to take a leap of faith. Another chance. And yet, a few weeks after that, I saw the old R. Same old, same old. And I built walls around my heart once again. No way was I going to let him hurt me this time. The wall went up. The mask, too. Three months later, he left. And you know, I blamed myself for allowing it to happen. I blamed myself for allowing him to penetrate the walls I had put up to keep my heart (and my kids' hearts) safe. My kids were hoping for restoration. And yet, I failed them.

The rest of 2013 went without hitch. We remained status quo - friends, married, separated, and yet, what were we exactly?

And so it happened that I accepted Kris' invitation to go to that Better Me event. And I have been struggling ever since.

Last week, after attending another one of those talks, I mentioned to Cai how I felt torn right after attending that particular talk in August. And you know, how I wasn't really publishing my half-written post because I didn't want my readers to think things were okay, when in reality, they weren't?

And yes, you're probably thinking: "Has K forgotten about her New Year's resolve?"

No, and that is why I am finally writing about it. That talk. That Better Me event that nagged at my innermost being. Sigh.

It's not that I didn't agree with Coach Pia. Don't get me wrong. I actually agreed with her on all points. And I must give credit where credit is due. Her talk spoke volumes, and in part, it actually convinced me to work on saving what we still have.

Coach Pia Nazareno-Acevedo
Taking notes...

I think the two life-changing points from her talk that really stayed with me all these months are these:

I know, cliché. But really, show me a person who says his or her parents' separation didn't affect him or her at all. It does. And you know, whether you like it or not, the kids bring it with them. It changes them and defines their adult life. I've been asking myself this since that fateful day in August, do I really want this affecting my kids? Do I want them bearing the brunt 'til their adult life? I have the power to change their future - at least the way my kids think about marriage and family. Why won't I give them that?

Nurture your spouse.
Loving unconditionally = sacrifice.

And that means transcending your personal ego, acknowledging your differences, letting go and forgiving past hurts, starting with a clean slate, and loving beyond words. How hard! I suppose this is where I struggled the most. Loving unconditionally, wow. It's so easy to say, but it entails so much from a person. Just the thought of it makes me want to throw in the towel at once. I cannot imagine myself loving R (or anyone else) when they clearly don't want to be a part of my life. Not that R showed signs he didn't want to be part of ours, but can you imagine loving your spouse in spite of... well, his sins?

And now, 7 months after that talk, I have come to realize that it can be done BUT it can't be done alone. After all, you cannot save a marriage on your own.

But you know what? Here's something I learned from church (I will write more about this on another post): the prodigal spouse doesn't have to agree on saving the marriage. He is not your partner in this quest. This is exactly why all my efforts went to waste in the past. I kept assuming my stand wouldn't work because R refused to save our marriage with me. And it was so easy to give up on him because I thought I couldn't love him the way I did before. You can't do it alone. You need GRACE to fight for your marriage. That's how you love unconditionally - you have to learn from the One who loves us in spite of past hurts, in spite of the many times we fall short of His glory - the One who forgives us, regardless.

So yes, readers, we are working on the marriage. We: God and I. There are a lot of issues that need to be addressed, but these issues are all about me. Not R. He has to deal with his personal issues on his own. I have forgiven him and will continue to forgive him, no matter how long it takes (or how often). And right now, we're friends. We're not exactly there, but we're getting somewhere. In fact, I would say, we're better now than when we were together. And you know, this loving unconditionally business gets easier by the day. When I don't feel like loving him that way, I just think about my kids, and know in my heart and mind that this is what I should do. I think about my own shortcomings and how we all don't deserve forgiveness and second chances anyway, but God gives it freely. So with that mindset, I know R deserves the same even when he doesn't deserve it. Yep, GRACE.

I sit here today, and I know I made the right resolve. I am my better me today, because of this. I've thrown worry, doubt and bitterness in the bin, and have started anew.

I'm sorry it took this long for me to write this piece. I want to thank YBS (Your Brand Story) and One Core for making talks like this possible. This particular talk has really, really made a difference in my life. Thank you to BPI for supporting this Better Me session (and for my really cool and very helpful finance journal), and to OMBU for a really delicious and memorable Filipino lunch (I love, love, love your Binakol!). 

My cool Financial Wellness Journal from BPI.
You guys should try Ombu. I love their Binakol (okay, I said that already)!
Ombu Modern Filipino Restaurant
G/F Sequoia Hotel, 91-93 Mother Ignacia Avenue, corner Timog Avenue, QC; (02) 441-0518
With Coach Pia, BPI and the SoMoms! What a privilege! Thank you, Kris!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

#OliviaWillYouMarryMe Take 2!

It's funny how we just love to assume about things. Take this #OliviaWillYouMarryMe mystery for instance. We speculated, didn't we? My social network was abuzz with it the past week. I heard conspiracy theory after conspiracy theory. People were thinking this could be for real, a proposal by John Prats to Isabel Oli, an ad campaign for the show Scandal, a teaser to a Max's Fried Chicken Ad (where did that come from, I say the colors are all wrong!), etc. etc.

And you know, I was ready to declare that this could only be some gimmick by the billboard company, because the billboards in front of Trinoma were positioned right next to each other (big billboard and long one, all declaring their love for "Olivia") - an obvious waste of ad money (people would see one on that strip anyway, why have two?). Plus, yesterday, two more ads were put up around Quezon City Circle.


Today, on Rappler, we finally saw light to this mystery.

Voila, c'est Olivia.

Photo is a screen shot of the Rappler report by Ira Agting. Thank you for letting us know! Finally!

So there you have it folks. Olivia. She said yes, whoever she may be. Snaps to the people behind the Empire East ad. You captured our attention. Plus, you gave extra mileage for Scandal, Max's, Magnum and all those companies we assumed to have launched the campaign.

I must say though that I was a tad disappointed that Olivia isn't real. Oh well. 

Monday, February 17, 2014

Mickey's Valentine!

Mickey finally chose his forever Valentine! Okay, actually, it was Rafflecopter, but... Haha!

Congratulations to my blog reader from Baguio...


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Justine said, "I will give it to my one and only sister...she wants a mick(e)y nung pumunta kami ng HK last year but kinda expensive ehh... if given the chance to win... this will be the best post valentines gift for her :)"

God heard your prayer, Justine! Rafflecopter picked your qualified entry! Thank you for joining. I will send you a message to get your deets. Meanwhile, CONGRATULATIONS! I hope your sister loves her Valentine's gift!

Mickey can't wait to meet her!

Thursday, February 13, 2014


One of the many billboards on EDSA (and major thoroughfares) that has gotten everyone curious.

They sprouted yesterday - these billboards with the Q: "Olivia, will you marry me? 21414" And yes, whoever Olivia is, "she" is now trending topic on social networks.

I am as curious as you are. Is this some marketing campaign or a real proposal? I guess we all would have to wait until tomorrow to find out.

Meanwhile, I bet you're wishing you were named Olivia. LOL!


Be My Valentine?

I will not lie to you. I am not exactly looking forward to Friday. Well, I was. But then, Sunday happened and all of sudden, I realized I wouldn't have a date for Valentine's Day after all. Not the real date-date at least. Not that the kids and I haven't been spending Valentine's Day with each other the past so and so years. We took family dates the first few years R wasn't around, then realized we were just stressing ourselves out with the crowd, the wait, the traffic, and all the hassle the day of hearts brings.

Last year, A and I took home Quiznos hoagies for dinner. Meanwhile, RL went out with KY and my mom. He later came home with a box of doughnuts and some chocolates for us. And that, dear folks, is how it is on Valentine's Day.

Last year's Valentine's treat from my little boy and his achi.

This year? Well this year, I was supposed to go out on a date (!!!). Alas, my date had to leave to clear out some work issues in the province. And so, we're back to having take-out tomorrow. Or maybe I'll cook, since the nanny will be away (even she has a date!). Not that I was expecting something grand this year, but you know, things have been better, and although we're not exactly where we want to be, God sure knows how to fill the void.

Today, in a conversation with my favorite aunt about Valentine's and how she is spending it with friends, relegating her dinner date to the less-traffic weekend, she says "It's just tradition. Valentine's is every day, if you know how to make it so. It's not the day, it's the date - the person or people you are with."

And so, I realized I celebrated Valentine's with my man Saturday night. I had that Valentine's date after all.

If there is one thing I am thankful for each time this day comes around, it is this: I've never been without love. In fact, every year, I am reminded that I am blessed to have who I have. Plus, I am expectant! I know that one day, when that day finally comes and I get to spend Valentine's Day out on a date, I can look back and say, hey, those take-out, date-less Valentine's Days weren't so bad after all.

And with that, here's another giveaway to celebrate Hearts Day with you! I am giving one of my readers an brand new, original 16" Mickey Mouse Valentine's plush! You know the drill. Happy Valentine's Day, friends. You are loved.

Won't you please be Mickey's Valentine?

This giveaway starts now! You have until 11:59PM of Sunday, February 18, to accomplish the steps required by Rafflecopter. I shall draw the winner the following day. You must use a valid email address when registering for Rafflecopter. I will use that email address to notify you, should you be my winner. This giveaway is open to anyone with a Philippine address.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Valentine's and S&R!

Looking for that special gift for your special someone? S&R has some of their adorable plush toys on sale until Sunday!

I also look forward to their themed cakes and pastries at their bakery section!

Visit S&R today and check out their Valentine specials!

#ToddlerBookGiveaway Winner!

I'll go straight to the point - because I have a hundred and one things to do today.

Congratulations to Maan Laxa!

You just won this book!

You won the Toddler Book Giveaway! I shall be sending you an email in a while to get your address and other deets!

Stay tuned for the next giveaway (should be happening some time this week). Meanwhile, I hope you are making time to read to your young kids. RL and I have been reading, although there are nights when I go home to sleeping kids. I think the important thing is for you to do something (anything!) any time you can. They will remember those days. 

Trust me, they will.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Win a Trip to Legoland Malaysia Resort!

My kids are crazy over Lego. RL probably has more Lego sets than anyone in our family combined. I don't know how he caught the Lego bug, but it's been on his Christmas list for two years now, next to puzzles and Chuggington train sets.

Building a firetruck...
Halfway done with a house...
Working on a police jeep...
Making sure he follows instructions carefully...
All done!

Okay, okay... you get my point. So anyway, it wasn't a big surprise that he was all too excited with McDonald's newest Happy Meal offering!

Yes, we love the new Lego Movie Happy Meal at McDonald's! So much so that we are set to collect three sets of cups.

Collect all 8 Lego Movie Lenticular Cups! Get one with every McDonald's Happy Meal you buy!

Here's the exciting part! McDonald's is giving everyone a chance to win a trip for four (4) to Legoland Malaysia Resort!

All one has to do is purchase a Lego Happy Meal from McDonald's, use the Lego Movie Collectible Lenticular Cup in a creative photo, and upload your creative photo using The Lego Movie Challenge tab on McDonald's Facebook page. You may submit as many entries as you want. One winner* will be selected to win a trip for four (4) to Legoland Malaysia Resort, inclusive of the following: Airfare for four (4) from the Philippines to Malaysia, airport transfers, 3D/2N accomodation at Legoland Malaysia Resort Hotel plus! Free entry to Legoland Malaysia Resort theme park and water park for two (2) days for four (4) people.

For more information, visit the McDonald's Facebook page here.

*Should you win, you must present the collectible cup you used for the photo, as well as your receipts showing you purchased four (4) Happy Meals in the period of February 4 to 24, 2014. So save those receipts!

In case you don't win, the McDonald's Happy Meal box also includes a KIDS-GO-FREE voucher that allows kids to visit Legoland Malaysia Resort for FREE with every purchase of an adult pass.

Yes, we are driving thru for more tomorrow. Get your Lego Movie Collectible Lenticular Cups today!


Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Starting Them Young

RL and I have revived book reading time at night. I don't know what happened, but I got too busy the past year - so much so that it seems I hardly get to catch him awake on a school night. Well, anyway, that definitely had to change. So as a resolution, we promised each other we'd make time for books. That also means, Momma has to come home early from work!

My little book reader.

Anyway, I have resolved to read him at least 3 books a night. Two weeks ago, we decided we were going to include the Bible. Permanently. That means, he can get at least two other books, but the Bible stays in the book list every night.

When my siblings and I were kids, we were encouraged to read the Bible everyday. We would sit together as a family, and my dad would conduct family devotions. I would want to emulate that. And although we haven't had the chance to have devotions together regularly, I am happy to say we've made leaps with RL's Bible and book reading. You can see how he has changed especially with his prayers. 

Yesterday, while ironing out 2014 plans for my blog, my friends and I thought it would be cool to launch a year's worth of giveaways. Yes, you read that right! A giveaway every week until the end of the year. The catch is, the giveaways won't be announced. They come discreetly within a post (like this one), so I am sure only my regular readers get to join the giveaways! But then of course, if your friends join because you shared the post, that would be great, too. Hehe.

So anyway, to start off this year of generosity, here's that first - oh wait, second giveaway for 2014!

WIN THIS! A book of godly virtues to include in your kid's book list!

That's it! Just follow the steps on Rafflecopter and you're in! I shall draw and announce the winner next week! This giveaway starts at midnight tonight and will run until 11:59pm, Sunday, February 9. I will ship the prize to the winner, so make sure you use a valid email address when logging into Rafflecopter.


| Prize sponsor: My brother KM. Hehe. He gave us two of these - one for RL and one to giveaway. How sweet!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Lego Movie Lenticular Tumblers at McDonald's!

I was craving for Taho (soymilk) the other day (no, not preggers, LOL), and went as far as the highway to look. This was actually late afternoon, and I was hoping I'd see a street vendor. I know that Taho is mostly sold in the morning, but I was thinking about getting a cup since last week.

So when we made a U-turn to head back home, I decided I might as well drive thru for McSpaghetti. I haven't had dinner, and that Taho craving needed to be replaced with something as comforting. And you know, McSpaghetti is comfort food. Well, to me it is.

And it was a good thing I didn't get my Taho fix, because McDonald's changed their Happy Meal that day! Look! Lego Movie Lenticular Tumblers!

We chose the Batman cup, because we are sure that would be the first one to sell out!

Eight Lego Lenticular Cups to collect!

McDonald's says these cups are 3D. I prefer calling them Lenticular because it is more appropriate.

From Wikipedia:
lenticular lens is an array of magnifying lenses, designed so that when viewed from slightly different angles, different images are magnified.[1] The most common example is the lenses used in lenticular printing, where the technology is used to give an illusion of depth, or to make images that appear to change or move as the image is viewed from different angles.

Anyway, I guess I have to forego that diet once again. Hehe. I want to collect all eight cups!

Photo grabbed from the McDo Facebook page.

And you know what else? They changed their Happy Meal Box to include this special Lego Movie theme! Each Happy Meal box includes a special voucher for Legoland Malaysia! One coupon gets a kid in FREE with every buying adult*!

*adult must be 18 years old and above

Can anyone guess where I'm going after work? LOL!

Get a Lego Movie Cup with every Happy Meal you buy! Now available a McDonald's!

#BentoGiveaway Winner!

Congratulations to... (drumroll, please)


You just won a Big Bento Start-Up kit. Please expect an email from me in a few. Again, congratulations!

Thank you, everyone, for joining this giveaway!


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