Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Jollitown was in town and we were there!

This post is brought to you by Jollibee.

This past weekend was an exciting one for my boys because we went all the way to SMX in Pasay to check out Jollibee's Jollitown. It was called #TheBigFunEvent (yup, that's the hashtag since everything now needs a hashtag!) and it featured inflatable fun for kiddies!

All my photos from the event are taken by my iPhone. Can't bring my camera with me anymore now kasi dala-dala ko na palagi ang aking sanggol! So I'm sorry for all the blurry pics! Plus, my two older kids, si Vito and si Iñigo, were not in the mood to stay still for photos since they were all excited to see the sights.

Jollitown was open to all Jollibee Kids Club members. Tickets were sold for just P65. Non-members (like my kids) were allowed to enter the venue, too, by just signing up to be a JKC member for P100. Super mura and may free lunch—regular Yum and a drink—and loot bag na yan! That's why dinumog ang event grabe. We were there at 10:30 a.m. (gates opened at 10 a.m.) and ang haba-haba-haba na ng pila! Super excited lahat—bata at matanda!

Check out these giant Jollibee favorites. My kids were so amazed. We all wanted a Jolly Hotdog!

There was a TON of stuff to do! It was very overwhelming. Each child was given a passport and they get stamps and freebies for every station they visited. So syempre kung gusto mo ng maraming toys, bibisitahin mo talaga lahat ng stations!
Vito playing a dancing game. He can really follow the steps!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Is Colgate's new launch the best toothpaste ever?!

This post is brought to you by the new Colgate Sugar Acid Neutralizer Toothpaste.

Last week, I went all the way to Marriott in Pasay to witness the launch of what could possibly be the best toothpaste ever invented: the Colgate Sugar Acid Neutralizer toothpaste.

As we all know (or at least I think it's common knowledge from all the toothpaste commercials we see!), toothpaste prevents tooth decay in five ways:

1. The fluoride strengthens the tooth enamel from plaque and the formation of cavities.
2. Together with the abrasive ingredients in toothpaste, the brushing motion removes food particles and plaque that sticks to the surface of the teeth. Cleaner teeth also means whiter teeth.
3. Toothpaste also kills bacteria in the mouth.
4. Brushing teeth also stimulates the production of saliva. Saliva makes it difficult for bacteria and plaque to stick to teeth.
5. With the removal of food particles and bacteria, the mouth smells better. Some toothpastes have mouthwash, too.

As you can tell, being a Lotte Xylitol digital ambassador last year has taught me a lot about dental care! Anyway, I remember thinking back then, during Xylitol's dental health seminars, I remember thinking that all we can do is defend teeth from bacteria and plaque. How come we can't come up with a way to attack the elements that cause cavities?

And that's why I was pretty impressed when Colgate revealed its new toothpaste!

Monday, October 27, 2014

The best breast milk storage bags ever!

Piero is turning 4 months old next week and he's still exclusively breastfed. All my kids got their mama's milk—Vito for 13 months, Iñigo for 22 months—so that means I've been breastfeeding since 2010! Oh my goodness! And since I always let the kids wean on their own, who knows when Piero will stop?

Anyway, breastfeeding has its ups and downs but the downs have definitely been eased by helpful tools like HoneySuckle Breastmilk Storage Bags. Possibly the best milk storage bags ever!!! I am so happy with them, I had to share it over on my Instagram!

I've used a number of milk storage materials before but this is the first time I'm really liking the act of storing my milk, like, I really super enjoy it! Haha, I'm so babaw. But really, it's not so babaw especially when you want to make sure...

(a) Your precious breast milk doesn't get wasted by spilling out of leaky containers;
(b) Your milk stays pure and clean; and
(c) You have space in your freezer.

Here's what it looks like:
Looks like any storage bag, right? Well, it's more than that and better in so many ways!

1. I love the design. It can lie flat in the freezer to save space, but the bottom opens up so you can make it stand on the counter. That way, when you're transferring milk into it, there's no spillage!
2. It has two seals to ensure no spills whatsoever!
3. It has a pour spout making it easy for me to pour out milk—again, no spills!
4. The plastic is BPA-free. And it's thick. Tough plastic. Will not be destroyed by the freezer frost or by my toddler's playfulness when he chanced upon a bag of milk and ran away with it, trying to open it to get to the milk inside!
5. The write-on tab lets me write on it with a ballpoint pen! Other storage materials, I had to use a permanent marker.
6. It's the best in the market but it's not expensive at all!

Here's how I use it:
I just use a manual pump now. I like that I pump milk and strengthen my grip at the same time!
Even the packaging takes up so little space in my cupboards!
 I like that you can write on it using a ballpen, a color marker, even a pencil!
It can stand on its own!
I froze it flat and look—no spills!

I love my HoneySuckle Breastmilk Storage Bags! And this isn't a sponsored post!

You can get a box of 25 pre-sterilized, biodegradable, BPA-free, super thick and tough, affordable HoneySuckle milk bags for just P399 at Rustan's Department Store. Mwah!

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Sunday, October 26, 2014

A year ago today

Exactly one year ago today, Iñigo met a cat. A really nice and gentle cat. He loved the cat at first sight.

Aww! I have 50 more photos of my then one-year-old Iñigo adoring that cat that bore him patiently, never once even acting annoyed (even though my captions made it seem so!). I wish I had cats again. I think my boys will love them!

While I love rediscovering these cute pics, what amazes me more is how quickly time flies. And how big my toddler's grown. And how I can't blink because every time I do, my boys are suddenly bigger. Oh, my heart!

(Thanks so much, Noel Pabalate, for the awesome photos!)

Saturday, October 25, 2014

My fun afternoon at Baby & Breakfast's Mom-ME Time 2014

Look at that gorgeous space, mommies. That's where I spent one magical afternoon with some of the most amazing women I've ever met. Many of them are already my friends. Many of them, I only know online. Some of them are celebrities. All of them—all of us!—are moms. And all of us were invited by Baby & Breakfast, together with Rica Peralejo-Bonifacio, actress and author of the blog Wanders & Wonders, and Spaces by Babyland, to spend an afternoon of loving ourselves.

Rica came up with the theme of Mom-ME Time because we moms often put ourselves last. It's natural, of course. We love our kids and so it's only expected to put them first. Sometimes, even if we don't feel like serving our kids (admit it!), we have to anyway because their needs are urgent or they're whiny or you just want peace and quiet. The fact is we moms are so caught up with the needs of others that we forget that we need to be filled up, taken care of, and loved, too!

Rica hands out one of the giveaways: a Ni-QUA clutch, each personalized with our initials!

I have often blogged about how important it is for us mommies to prioritize our needs. How can we give when we're empty? But I will confess that many times, I myself find it hard to follow my own advice. I wish I can eat uninterrupted, sleep for 10 hours, take a looooong bath, go on a date alone with my husband, read a thick novel straight, travel on a whim, go to the spa for one whole day, go on a shopping spree for myself... Sigh!

I haven't been alone in forever, moms. And for a writer and introvert like me, that is extremely exhausting. To be on all the time. To give and give and give. I'm not complaining. I am in love with my life! I'm just tired a lot. But will I give all this up, will I give up my kids, for all the stuff I wished for above? NEVER! For my kids, I would gladly give up sleep, books, baths, shopping, everything!

But to be honest, it hasn't come to that. My kids may demand, "Mama, look at me!" or "Mama, I want to eat ice cream!" and all that, but they never say, "Mama, don't take a bath because I want you here." They've never said, "You must never buy anything for yourself because I want all your money." Come to think of it, my kids may ask a lot of me but they give me so much in return, too. And they also never demand for unreasonable things, so I shouldn't feel guilty if I pamper myself a little, to care for myself more, to be with my husband or my friends or even to just be alone.

And that afternoon with the other mommies at Mom-ME Time was just what I needed!

Delicious food by K. by Cunanan. Me and Piero with Cristina Garcia-Long and Monica Eleazar-Manzano.
Moms with babies! Jennifer Tan-Chi, Monica and me!
My seatmate Danica Sotto Pingris with Nikka Martinez, who kindly helped me look for my seat.
Maricel Laxa-Pangilinan talked about the importance of being whole so that we can always give and give to our family.
Definitely a delightful afternoon of fun activities, good food, soul-baring conversations and making new friends. 
Kaity Boo of Snap Play Love, Lilian Yeo of The Go Mom, Rissa Mananquil-Trillo with Piero, and Rica.
Jennifer, Janna Simpao of Baby & Breakfast, me and Piero, Stella Pastores of Misis Teapot,
and Martine de Luna of Make It Blissful. Why are we all leaning to the right?!
I grabbed all these photos by Happy Folks Studio from Baby & Breakfast. Now that I bring Piero along everywhere, I don't bring my camera anymore. I might drop it... or Piero! Anyway, there are lots more gorgeous photos from the Mom-ME Time event at Baby & Breakfast so do check them out. You'll be amazed at all the gifts we got from the generous sponsors!

Here's a list of what every mommy took home:
  1. Beansprout laundry bag
  2. Celebrity Home magazine
  3. Cookies from The Delightful Miss Joyce
  4. Cookies from Lovelots Cakes
  5. Cycles Baby samples
  6. Cycles Sensitive samples
  7. Dr. Brown's muslin
  8. Elin breastfeeding wrap
  9. Fruit Magic kefir drink
  10. Give In To The Glitter necklace
  11. Huggies diapers
  12. Jamie & Baby Lifestyle Photography gift certificate
  13. Lulu DK tattoos
  14. Messy Bessy samples
  15. Ni-QUA monogrammed leather clutches
  16. Okiedog bag
  17. Shoo! Anti-Mosquito stickers
  18. SnapperDoodles tote bag
  19. Urban Ashram gift certificate
  20. Yosi Samra flats
I think we got more. I'm still overwhelmed by all the goodies we got! There were raffle prizes, too! I won a beautiful tablecloth from L'Indochine. Someone won a crib! I feel like every mom won something!

Thanks so much, Janna and Rica, for inviting us mommies to your Mom-ME Time party. I made many new friends! Oh, and I like that you hashtagged it #MomMeTime2014. That means there will be a 2015! And so on and so forth!

I think more moms will definitely need that reminder to just focus on themselves, not as a selfish act but as an act of giving to oneself so that we can give more to the ones who need us most—our family.

Looking forward to next year!

Mom-ME Time 2014 would like to thank...
Co-Presenter: Rica Peralejo-Bonifacio of Wanders&Wonders and Babyland / Speaker: Maricel Laxa-Pangilinan of Mommy Maricel / Media Partner: Celebrity Mom / Photographer: Happy Folks Studio / Stylist: Gideon Hermosa of The Events Studio / Rental Chairs: Botafogo Event Rentals / Caterer: K. by Cunanan / Cake and Lace Cookies: The Delightful Miss Joyce / Cookies: Lovelots Cakes / Invitations Design: Natural Selection Design Co. / Invitations Printing: CEVA Designs
Sponsors: Babiators / Beansprout / Boba / Boon / Brolly Sheets / Cradle Natural / Cycles Baby / Cycles Sensitive / Dr. Brown’s / Elin / Fruit Magic / Give into the Glitter / Huggies / Jamie & Baby Lifestyle Photography / JoomaJam / Kameraman / L’Indochine / Lulu DK / Mamas & Papas / Meeno / Melawares / Messy Bessy / Minui / NiQUA / Okiedog / RuMe / Shoo! Anti Mosquito / SnapperDoodles / So Young / Stabilo / Tonga / Urban Ashram Manila / Yosi Samra

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Monday, October 20, 2014

A boy and a bunny

Iñigo and Matilda. A love story.

I love my bunnies!

Have a good week, dear readers!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Pegs for the boys' room

Now that Vito is 4 and Iñigo is 2 and Piero is breastfeeding the life out of me, our bedroom is getting a little too crowded. While we're super loving that we get to cuddle our boys every night, we're not loving that our marriage is not getting any action (if you know what I mean!). So Vince and I have been discussing that it's time to convert our study into the boys' room.

I've set my heart on a red-white-and-blue color scheme, inspired by the bath sets Lucy gave the boys. Vince wasn't so keen on it since he is not a fan of nautical themes, and those colors are very nautical, very Americana. But when he suggested bold stripes on the walls, well, I fell in love!

Here are our pegs:

So big and bold!

So blue and white stripes on the walls. Shelves, closets and beds will be a dark wood since little boys spell destruction on white furniture. Then we'll just use red accents, like maybe on throw pillows, sheets and storage.

So exciting!!! We're so ready for a makeover!!!

image sources: Trunk Full of Treasure, Kid Space Stuff, Inspiring Home Style

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Saturday, October 11, 2014

Electrolux's Delightful-E Simple Campaign (which might win me a new washing machine!)

This post is brought to you by Electrolux.

Hi mommies! I'm part of this ongoing awareness campaign by Electrolux called Delightful-E Simple. You say that as "delightfully simple" because the home appliances brand wants us moms to know that saving (electricity, water, time, money!) can be delightfully simple. Hooray!

Actually, the campaign is not so simple. And by that I mean it's not just your usual "Here's how to save etc" awareness campaign. It has many levels! There's the saving awareness aspect. Then there's a savings calculator. Then there was a fabulous giveaway of washing machines last September. Then, last but definitely not the least, there's a social awareness and giving-back aspect, too. It's really one of the best campaigns I've seen in a long time! Let me tell you about it!

The right tools can help you save money and be more efficient.
I believe in technology. For example: I have a steamer that cuts down ironing time from 2 hours to an incredible 30 minutes. My refrigerator and air conditioning units save energy so even though they're on 24/7, my electric bill does not induce heart attacks.

With an Electrolux washing machine, doing the laundry becomes easier, faster and cheaper because it's efficient in every way. You don't waste water, detergent and electricity. Your clothes are cleaner and treated better so they last longer. Best of all, you save time! And time, as any mommy knows, is the most expensive thing of all!

Know the total money you can save with the Electrolux washing machine.
Okay, I don't have an Electrolux washing machine (yet!) but I've been studying it because I need to replace our 12-year-old washing machine. The Electrolux Savings Calculator is helping me decide what brand to buy! This is a Facebook app that helped me calculate how much I'll save if I use an Electrolux front load washer and dryer or top-load washing machine. Check it out here.

I learned that I can save more than P11,000 a year if I used the Electrolux washing machine!!! I can use that money for my kids! Or for Vince! Or for me! Heaven knows I need a treat!

You can get a discount when you buy a washing machine... or you can win a new one!!!
Electrolux partnered with Meralco for this fun part: You can get up to P5,000 discount on select Electrolux washing machines for sale at Abenson Appliances, Anson’s, Metro Gaisano, Robinson’s Appliances, Saver’s Mart, and SM Appliance Center. Just fill out the Meralco Customer Information Form found in the Electrolux flyer included in your Meralco bill and present it to any Electrolux promoter in the participating stores. This huge discount is offered until November 30, 2014.

Or you can win a new washing machine! The Electrolux Savings Calculator app is also tied to a Facebook contest, which I joined of course because I really need a new washing machine! All I did was share my laundry savings to my Facebook friends. You can join, too! Go to Facebook, have fun with the app, share your savings and what you'll use that money for (New shoes? Your kid's tuition? Rent? A family trip?). Use the hashtags #DelightfulE #SimpleToSave. Four winners will win an Electrolux washing machine each!!! Please let me be one of them!

How do I teach gratitude?

I read an article not so long ago about how we should not be angry at our kids when they break something. For example, if they break your crystal vase and you go ballistic, the message you're sending your child is the vase is more important than him.

Okay, I get that. I get that point. So when my toddler Iñigo broke my pale blue garden stool with the delicate leaves and flowers print, I didn't get angry. Instead, I scooped him in my arms, away from the dangerous shards, and told him, "I'm so glad you're okay!"

I'm glad he's okay, okay? Let that be clear. But I miss my garden stool. You can just see it here (at the background with the heavy crystal vase perched atop it) on the cover of this book, back when my house was so pretty, it was featured in home magazines and made the cover of a home design book. I miss my garden stool. It wasn't cheap. It was pretty. It had memories of me and Vince as newlyweds. Now it's broken and thrown away. And so now I'm thinking, "Okay, so my message to my son was he is definitely more important to me than a garden stool. But did I also tell him that it's okay to break people's things?"

I'm at a loss these days. Parenting sure isn't easy.

What also really upsets me is when Iñigo plays with his food, throwing it on the floor with glee. Or when Vito asks for food or milk and then he takes a bite or a sip and then says he doesn't want it anymore. Or when Iñigo leaves the refrigerator door open. Or when Vito says, when I tell him to be more careful with his toys or with our things, he replies carelessly, "If it gets lost/broken, we'll just go and buy a new one."

Maybe because I grew up with so little, these things strike a raw nerve. Waste, so much waste! I keep hearing my mother's voice in my head: "Turn off the lights. Finish your food. Take care of your things." You know, stuff all mothers say, except that I know my mother said those things because she didn't eat breakfast and lunch or that she got into debt again just so we can have electricity and water and food and clothes. So when I see my kids wasting, I get upset. One time, after a particularly trying afternoon, I cried, "I work so hard, I don't sleep so I can work all night just to put food on your plate, to buy you your Legos!"

Silly me. They're 4 and 2. What do they know?

I'm grateful that we can afford this lifestyle. There's food, nothing fancy but there's more than enough not just for main meals but for snacks and desserts. The kids don't have a lot of toys but they do have a lot of Legos. They also can play with our iPads and video games. They also enjoy so many art materials. The crayons alone! I spent all of my childhood wishing for the 64-piece Crayola set so much so that when I got a job, I bought myself a box. I never used it. Just stared at it, fingered those slender sticks of colors, and breathed in their waxy smell—childhood dream come true.

My children don't understand how I feel not just because they're so young but because they're surrounded by plenty. My husband and I work so hard to give them a good life. How can I make them understand without withholding things from them? We don't even give them that much. What we give that's plenty is food and our time. Vince and I are there for them all the hours they're awake!

I guess I'm expecting too much. They are so small. But I really do need them to be grateful. It's not just saying "please" and "thank you", which they do say. It's having an attitude of appreciation. I need them to take care of their things, of our things. I seriously cannot have them going about destroying my house and then me pretending to be happy about it! I just don't know how to teach them that Mama loves them above all things but they need to respect Mama's things!

Are they really too young? Am I really expecting too much? Or am I letting my past of a less privileged life overshadow my present abundance?

Father God, please help me be a good steward of the children You gave me and also the material blessings You sent my way. I need my children to know I love them more than any object but I need You to show me how to teach them gratitude. I want to be a good parent and a good homemaker! Amen.

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Thursday, October 9, 2014

Count the months with these cute stickers!

We tried to document our first two boys' monthly milestones with stickers but we weren't very good with it. Mostly because we were very busy parents with jobs back then. Here's Iñigo. I think we got to Month 4 before we abandoned the project altogether. 

So now, because Piero is our last baby and it's our last chance to do this plus we freelancers now have time to dote on the boys, we're going to document Piero's growth every month!

Gosh, Piero, you are super cute!!! Check out his monthly progress over at my Instagram!

Okay, mommies! Tips!

1. Use the same background. Preferably a crisp, white, ironed-flat sheet!
2. Make baby pose with a toy so you have something to measure his growth by.
3. Whether you take a photo up close or of the entire body, be consistent so there's uniformity, a nice pattern for when you finally line up those pictures after a year.

Clearly, I came upon those tips in the course of my documentation! Well, too late now!

Oh, one more tip! You can use the stickers to track the progress of your pregnancy, too! Just stick it on your tummy!

The stickers I use are from SprintsPhil. Or SPrints. I can't figure out their real business name! But here's their Facebook page so you can check out all the adorable designs.

Here's the one we got for Piero:

Oh, hey, I have an extra set. And I want to give it away!
Police-themed ties.

If you want it, just like the FB page of SprintsPhil/SPrints and leave your name in the comments below! And please have a Philippine address! I pick a mommy on Saturday! Good luck!


Hi Cris! Send me a message over at my Facebook page to claim your prize!

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Tuesday, October 7, 2014

My life of luxury

A few weeks ago, a reader left a comment on one of my past posts, telling me I live a life of luxury. Considering that I haven't gone to the salon in 7 months, need new shoes, haven't shopped for myself in two years, and am foregoing a trip to the orthodontist because braces cost the same as tuition, I scoffed at this silly observation. Luxury? What luxury?

Perhaps it's because, now that we have three kids, I started thinking we're suddenly in need of more space, or maybe because I spend so much time at home breastfeeding that I stare at the walls and toys and furniture that I've begun feeling that we need to change things. New paint on the walls. New rugs. New bins to contain the ever-increasing chaos that Legos bring. New pots and pans. New throw pillows. New sheets and towels. New, new, new. But because our income is not regular (but expenses are frighteningly so), there's no way we can buy anything new.

We're fine. Don't worry. But with three kids, gone are the days when Vince and I—newlyweds and both with cushy jobs at that time—could go on crazy shopping sprees. We still can if we wanted to, but responsibility stays our hand. Vito will go to preschool soon. Piero has his monthly vaccines. We really really need to get a health plan now.  

So maybe because of this kill-joy responsibility or the fact I haven't shopped for me and just me since 2012, feelings of discontent have crept in. I've been working so hard, I tell myself, I deserve a treat. I had a terrible pregnancy and giving birth was so painful, I deserve a reward. I look in the mirror and see my whiteheads and fine lines and my hair that needs a cut, and I say, "I look unkempt, messy, tired. Will people think I'm messy and exhausted and unhappy?"

I, I, I. Me, me, me. Life really gets ugly when it's all about me!

Then my husband rearranged the furniture and suddenly our home is so spacious. Because I missed the chandelier hanging over the dining table, he made colorful lamps and said, "Pretty lamps for my pretty wife." When I was younger, I grew up with Mama constantly wondering when Papa would do anything for her.

I got sick. My kids got sick. While I was praying for our health to get better, I looked at my little medicine box, just a little Tupperware thing, and felt grateful that all we need is paracetamol. Grateful I could just pop into Mercury Drug next door and buy my asthma meds. When I was growing up, Mama and I, both asthma sufferers, stayed up all night for months at a time, struggling to breathe, all because we couldn't afford asthma medicine.

Our refrigerator and cupboard are full of food. At the supermarket, I never need to compare prices or buy the cheaper brand. My children eat abundantly. When I was growing up, we borrowed heavily from my aunt's grocery stall. While we never missed a meal, the food was rationed. No such thing as a second helping. And dessert? We had dessert only on birthdays and Christmas!

Growing up, I wasn't unhappy. It was only when I saw my mother working herself to death and getting into debt that I became unhappy. It doesn't have to be this way! Why was it this way? When I become a wife and mother, I swore it will not be my way.

And it isn't. My career dreams came true at 30. My health improved, too, at 30. My acne finally disappeared. I have a closet full of clothes and bags and shoes I don't even use. I live in a big condo unit with beautiful furniture we bought with a writer's/editor's salary, something we were told can never be big enough. My life is practically sponsored—free beauty products, free trips, free clothes, free food, free diapers! I get to do what I love—writing—and stay home with my family. My husband is hands-on with raising our kids. And our kids, our kids! They are healthy and smart and beautiful.

My life is luxurious. It's not filled with designer bags or glamorous events. It's not peppered with fancy trips all over the world. It's not punctuated with shopping sprees every weekend. It used to be and that was fun, but it didn't feel luxurious back when we had so much money. Now it does. With our good health, our freedom to choose the jobs we want to do, the time we spend with our baby boys, oh, the time with our boys! That's 24/7 with them, giggling, cuddling, tickling, playing, sleeping, bathing, reading, just breathing! We laugh every day. Every single, glorious day! Well, yes, this is a life of luxury.

My baby boys!

I pray I never lose sight of how blessed I am. Thank You, Lord, for opening my eyes to Your goodness. May You also open the eyes of the mommies who read my blog and let them see just how amazing our lives as mothers are!

P.S. Moms, you have got to read this wonderful and funny essay over at Momastery. It is absolute perfection on getting us to see that our lives are so blessed! I especially love her kitchen makeover. Best before-and-after pics I have ever seen in my life!!!

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Thursday, October 2, 2014

What a September!

There's a lot of blog neglect going on lately. Just when I'm overflowing with stories! I have so many exciting things happening, dearest readers. I could barely wrap my head around them and catch my breath! I looked through my Instagram account so I can give you a summary:

I collaborated with Ni-QUA to come out with my line of clutches. Buy one please! I have pink and tan, too!!!

I started work as Baby Magazine's Market Editor. My friend says it's the Town & Country of parenting magazines since it features a lot of upper crust moms. Well, I'm just glad I have work! It's very light since Baby Magazine comes out every two months. So I still work from home. Best of both worlds!

Here's a few shots from the fashion editorial shoot we did at Makati Shangri-la. That was sooo cute! In case you're wondering, my work as Market Editor is all about featuring products and services for babies, little kids, moms and families. So that's like a beauty/fashion/lifestyle editor. In other words, I get the fun part of making the magazine! If you have a product and service for babies, little kids, moms and families, tell me!

I also joined BDJ Box Beauty Ministry to dish beauty advice, tips and reviews. Check out my articles! I just started so I don't have a lot yet, but my fellow ministers have dozens of beauty reviews and tips you'll love!

Anyway, the BDJ post also means attending events and meetings! A very big one was at the Beauty Social mid-September. Here's a photo of me and Kate Alvarez backstage. Those bags behind us are hundreds of goody bags for all the girls who attended. Wow, there are soooo many BDJ Box subscribers! And it was so nice to meet you!

By the way, my articles came out in Smart Parenting's September issue. I hope you got a copy! These are possibly my last articles to come out in magazines this year because I'll be focusing on Baby Magazine now.

Then I got sick for a whole week. Asthma attacks for the first time in years! My kids got sick, too. My husband and I were worried about Vito and Iñigo. But they got better soon enough. Iñigo now is on the last legs of his horrible cold. But we're just happy they're healthy again.

And I was busy with the blogs. Here I am on my way to yet another meeting! And Piero is always with me since he breastfeeds. I know you're not seeing any action online but I've been going to meetings with people who want to work with me. Some didn't work out, some did. I'm just grateful for everything! Blogging has been such a big blessing!

That's why I'm back! I have to blog. I know I've been away. That's because life is exciting! Let's not forget to live! Still, I don't want to lose you, my dearest readers. So I'm going to try to blog here on Topaz Mommy twice a week. I also blog over at Topaz Horizon, in case you miss me. And if you reeeeeeally miss me, I'm very active on Instagram and Facebook. On IG, I post a lot about my everyday life. On FB, I share a lot of links to interesting and helpful stories I found on the web.

So I promise to blog more often and regularly! I'm thinking Tuesdays and Thursdays. See you next week! Happy weekend!

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