What’s a cute fuzzy reptile doing in my bag?
It’s a super cute felt pouch! I saw this on my marquee.ph and fell in love with it!
Every Christmas we go for themed decorations at home. They’ve mostly centered around colors, and once we went Victorian. We wanted something different this year though without having to spend on new decorations. One thing our family enjoys doing (individually and together) is read. And so the theme “Bookish Christmas” was born! Here’s our Christmas tree decorated by our family of bibliophiles.
What’s so bookworm-y about it you ask? The crafts on this tree are made from recycled book pages. We house a lot of really old books, the type whose pages have foxing. What better way to give them a new life than to be the first generation of DIY family decorations?
These birds were the first decorations. They’re pretty easy to make! I’ll post instructions on how to do these bookish separately. Or you can head over to the blog that served as our inspiration: Under The Table and Dreaming. (Thank you Stephanie Lynn for these super friendly DIY instructions!)
We also have some pretty cranes nestled in the tree branches made by my other sister, the expert cranes maker.
The following flowers also created from book pages. Each family member has his/her initial up on the tree. We also put up flowers that have the initials of our relatives who are coming over for Noche Buena. They can take home their own personalized flowers after the party.
We had a bunch of extra book flowers, so my sister thought of putting pictures of our favorite reader. Here’s Timmy with a bunch of his reading pictures at the center of all the bookish flowers.
You can find instructions on how to make these paper star ornaments (or flowers as we call them) over at That’s My Letter. (Thank you Jamie, for this awesome tutorial!)
But where are the books, you may ask. Continue reading
Ah, lovely lavender. According to this resource (UMM), lavender comes from the Latin root lavare, meaning “to wash.” It was often used in baths to help purify body and spirit. Research also points to lavender providing sedative effects. The scent of lavender is so soothing!
These bath time treats from Healthy Options are my favorites, especially after a long day. All are lavender-scented and simply calming.
That’s Sonoma Soap Company’s Natural Daily Shampoo, Natural Daily Conditioner and Natural Bath & Shower Gel. I’ve been using them for a couple of months now and they’re my go-to bath partners. Maybe I’ve been in more need of de-stressing time the past months. Ha!
Do you like lavender too? In what products do you enjoy the scent of lavender?
I came home yesterday to a lovely package filled with great-for-the-summer goodies! Johnson’s is advocating the wonders of outdoor play. These products of theirs can get kids enjoying the outdoors more while keeping cool. No sticky feeling, no “amoy-araw”, and no “bungang araw”! Ack, I remember being a victim of bungang araw when I was a kid. It was hot and itchy. Blech. I sure don’t want Timmy to experience that.
In the goody bag:
Top row: JOHNSON’S® Baby Pink Blossoms Powder with long-lasting fragrance, JOHNSON’S® Baby Skin Protection Powder, and JOHNSON’S® Baby Cooling Powder with honeysuckle.
Of these three, I’ve only previously tried the Cooling Powder variant. I use it on Timmy’s baby butt after washing to protect against rashes. I started using this last December when he had a terrible diaper rash! This Cooling Powder helped heal the rashes so I carried on using it for protection.
I’m excited to try both pink and orange ones and I’ll be trying the Skin Protection Powder first! Timmy’s been getting slight rashes because of this bad heat so I hope this helps. Read more about sun protection here.
Bottom row: JOHNSON’S® Baby Summer Peach Bath with Vitamin E and the natural essence of Peach Leaf, JOHNSON’S® Baby Cooling Bath with honeysuckle, JOHNSON’S® Baby Slide Cologne, JOHNSON’S® Baby Daily Sun Protection Lotion, JOHNSON’S® Baby Bounce Cologne.
I’ve tried the Cooling Bath before and it’s good! I like how it smells. I’m not a cologne user, but I’ll give these a whirl to see which one will smell good on the boy. I’m sure they’ll smell better than the amoy-araw scent he has after our afternoon walks!
My favorite of all Johnson’s powders is actually their Bedtime variant. It’s a bedtime powder so not for Play Days BUT you sure can use it after a full day of play! Drifting off to sleep after a day of active play with its soothing scent spells nothing but comfort. Its bedtime baby lotion is tops, too!
Suuuuuper thanks to Johnson’s for this very useful summer package! Timmy will definitely enjoy his outdoor play longer. I can’t wait to try them all! This Mom won’t mind sharing in the powders too
I’m a Windows girl. Yup. I admit it. I’ve been a PC girl my whole life and I don’t think that will change anytime soon. I’m happy with my Acer laptop, my Windows 7 and Microsoft Powerpoint. I have a Ph.D. in Microsoft Powerpoint. Seriously. Go ask my boss!
Microsoft products have made my life as a WAHM (work-at-home-Mom) a lot easier. My laptop and I are inseparable, whether at home or when I’m working at a virtual office (a.k.a. a coffee shop with no kids running around). Windows is a huge part of family life — from organizing documents to entertaining my kid. Office has been integral in helping manage my professional life – from freelance writing to consulting. I’m a bit OC (obsessive-compulsive) with the way I file my documents and prepare my presentations, so I think I’ve met my match with Office. I personally believe their technology can be empowering and is a great vehicle for channelling creativity. The greatest thing about it also is that it’s not that hard to learn That makes for better productivity and faster output. I get to spend more time with the baby. Yey!
If you too have been looking for a vehicle that can help you manage your work load at the same time keep you entertained and connected, then now is a great time to buy a PC for you and the whole family!
I think it’s a great time to flex more WAHM muscle with a new Windows 7 PC. Go ahead and try it yourself.
*This is a sponsored post.
TV commercials are fun to watch. They were a source of amusement as early as I could sit up in a crib, then became even more so when I joined the advertising industry after college. I got a chance to write about old TV commercials at The Philippine Online Chronicles and had a blast doing so. (Link: Remembering those old TV ads)
Of course old is relative. In this case, it means ads that came out in the ’80s and ’90s. Yes, that can already be labeled as OLD!
Aside from the TV commercials I wrote about in the article, there are many more that have made a strong mark on my memory. Let me know if you remember any of these ads! Ah, old commercials, how you entertain us so.
“I’m getting ready, getting ready…” (MILO)
This ad really worked for me. I did drink quite a lot of Milo back then.
Nuffnang Philippines has chosen this Wifely Steps blogger to be its Featured Blogger for the Month of June. I am super honored. Thank you Nuffnang Philippines!
Nuffnang is Asia-Pacific’s first and leading blog advertising community. I’ve met some of the Nuffnangers from the Philippine office and they’re one dynamic and enthusiastic bunch! I’m proud to be part of this family.
If you’re interested, you can read my interview with them at their website. Obviously I had a lot of fun answering their questions as my replies were quite lengthy. Heehee.
Thanks again to Nuffnang for this wonderful surprise. To all those coming this way through the Nuffnang site, a big hello and welcome to you guys! Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy checking this blog out.
You say “Mongol” and I say “#2!” Mongol pencil #2 is my all-time favorite writing instrument. The crisp sound of a freshly sharpened #2 on paper is blissfully cathartic. That and the brand carries a lot of nostalgia for me. Every time I see the yellow-orange pencils I’m reminded of the days when my family would troop to the school bookstore to complete our back-to-school checklist. When I learned that Mongol was carrying crayons, I was so excited. Perfect! My toddler has a budding love with coloring so it was the perfect time to try out these crayons.
Mmmm, don’t you love the smell of new crayons? This is Timmy’s first “big boy crayons”. The current crayons he has are the chunky ones, so I was a bit worried that he wouldn’t be able to hold these thinner ones properly. I was also a little apprehensive that he would start breaking them. Ah, what a worrywart I turned out to be. Timmy immediately got started on his artwork. No broken crayons or handling issues. Timmy handled the crayons with, uh, flying colors. (Sorry, I couldn’t resist the pun!)
This is Timmy’s first artwork with his Mongol crayons. I’ll call it “An Experiment in Cerulean and Orange.” I’m sure you can come up with a better title!
While Timmy was busy with that piece, I was checking out the different shades. It’s been a long time since I’ve played with crayons! My favorites were these shades of red and blue.
Check out the crayon box and you’ll notice the trademark Mongol band at the top. I really loved this touch. The band is such a strong branding property that there’s no mistaking this box of crayons is Mongol. The advertising geek in me super loved it.
But the box was put aside because I prefer putting Timmy’s crayons in a recycled tissue box holder. This way, Timmy gets quicker access to any colors he wants.
A box of Mongol Crayons 24′s goes for P44.75. Hey, that’s not bad at all. These crayons are of really good quality. They’re also non-toxic. Check them out at National Bookstore and at other bookstores and department stores.
It’s Day 8 of Timmy’s crayons and he hasn’t broken a single one yet. Woohoo! It also looks like I’ll be attaching more nostalgia with Mongol, this being Timmy’s first “real” crayons. Holy cow, my toddler’s using big boy crayons. Sniff. Before I know it he’ll be getting from my stash of #2 pencils and sketching in his journals. How blissfully sentimental that moment would be but wait a minute! Not so fast! Today, crayons. Tomorrow, pencils. One colorful, artsy growing up step at a time.
If you’re looking for a first-class boutique hotel in the Manila Bay area, check out G-Hotel Manila. My family stayed there for two nights last November and we had a splendid time. The accommodations were comfortable, wi-fi was fast and free, the staff was super friendly, the food was delicious. We had a good view of the bay too!
After a friend recommended the hotel, I booked via the hotel’s website. I took a Deluxe Twin for P3,800. The rates are cheaper when booked online, and I got a personal email from the staff once it was all confirmed. No robot emails! That was already an indication of the great G-hotel experience we were about to have.
The hotel was easy to locate. It’s right along Roxas Boulevard and a few buildings before Manila Diamond. There’s a secure parking lot right across and beside the hotel.
We stayed there around the Christmas holidays so the lobby was decked in silver and white. Super lovely and sophisticated. You’d think all the black and metal colors would make you feel cold inside, but no. The staff was really warm so it felt quite homey.
Once we were at the reception area, I presented our hotel voucher and got a great surprise. (Does G in G-Hotel stand for Grrreat?!) We were being upgraded to a suite! Ooh la la. I didn’t know why, but maybe it was because we were staying for two nights.
Our G-Hotel suite
As soon as we stepped into the room, I knew we were really in for a great stay. WOOD FLOORS!!! I’m not a fan of carpets, you see. You never know what’s lurking in between those fibers… Warm browns, tans, wood and wicker welcomed us when we stepped into our suite. I really fancied living there.
A suite entails a separate bedroom, and it didn’t disappoint. It was spacious and cozy at the same time. We had trouble getting out of bed the next morning because it was just too darn comfy.
Holy friggin’ mistletoe, Batman. It’s December. You know, there’s a chill in the air. Traffic is getting heavier. Malls are getting more crowded. Diets are about to get broken.
It’s Christmas time! What, you’re blue? You’re broke? You’re buried in last-minute meetings before the break? I can help! Well, only with the blue part and the destressing but not the broke part. Two out of three is still a good thing. Anyway, get into the swing of Christmas my listening to Christmas songs! Like right now! It’s an instant mood booster.
There’s an iPhone app I love. It’s called Christmas Radio. It’s a free app where you get to listen to Christmas radio stations from all over the world. I put it on when I’m getting overwhelmed by paperwork (destressing!) or when I’m cleaning the room (blue!). I guess it can help with the broke part too since you can enjoy it without spending a cent.
“Jingle bells, Batman smells, Robin laid an egg…” Do YOU listen to Christmas songs to get the spirit too? What are your favorite holiday songs?
I fell asleep last night watching Felicity. My husband walked into the room and saw me snoozing beside the baby. That’s the last I recall of what happened last night.
This morning I was rushing for work when my husband suddenly said out of the blue, “Hey, Felicity isn’t that bad! I liked it!”
I stopped washing my face and looked at him. “What?”
“I watched one episode when you fell asleep. It’s really good! The story is simple but nakakakilig (thrilling). And there are a lot of subplots but they mesh together well.”
“Oh!,” I grinned, honestly surprised that my husband enjoyed the show. “So what happened after I slept?”
He made a face and I figured he didn’t want to talk about it. He took a deep breath then went, “Well Felicity has this roommate who has spells, then Felicity said she didn’t believe in magic but she believed in faith. Who’s Felicity’s crush?”
“Ben. So he got a job that meant he’d drive and be gone for two weeks, so the group decided to go on a road trip together. But the pseudo-boyfriend of Felicity… what’s his name?”
“Noel. He said it was awkward because they were friends but they were still kissing, so going on a road trip would be a bad idea. And then Ben’s girlfriend broke up with him.”
What followed was a very detailed explanation of the episode. I was hiding a smile the whole time I was getting dressed for work. My husband went on and on about the show.
“…and then it’s by J.J. Abrams! No wonder it’s good! The girl who played Felicity was in Mission Impossible too,” he continued to gush. He looked at me and asked, “How far down am I this season?”
“I think that was the finale you just watched. From your story it looks like everyone’s going away for the summer,” I responded.
“Yeah. Then there were moments between Ben and Felicity, as if they were going to kiss but they wouldn’t, now Felicity is torn between telling her best friend or not…,” then he continued to gush. My husband. Fascinated by Felicity.
I was late for my ride by 20 minutes but it was worth it.
That was the highlight of my morning.
P.S. I know I’m like ten years behind on the show but I’m only on Season 1. No spoilers please!!!
A present from one ’80s kid to another:
My husband got it for me after I started gushing over it. Thank you Husby! Isn’t it cute? It makes for a nifty coin purse or a cellphone case. My camera fits into it too. We got this pouch from Rustan’s.
I wonder if kids born in the ’90s can still relate to this post. Maybe they don’t even know what a cassette tape is. Eek.
The best mix tapes were made by my best friend in high school. She was the master mix tape maker. She knew the songs that went well together and her mix tape flowed like it was just one long melody. I loved them. I wonder if she still makes mix tapes. Well, CD style now.
If you got a mix tape from an admirer (baaaaack then), you could consider yourself quite lucky! I think that a lot of effort goes into making a mix tape more than burning a CD. There’s just more manual work involved.
The cheesy mix tapes were the ones that had all the love songs and then (surprise!) your boyfriend’s/suitor’s/admirer’s voice would suddenly surface like a DJ. I didn’t get any of those but I did hear some tapes like that and they were funny. Preciously sweet but, on hindsight, hilarious.
While we’re on mix tapes, here’s one of my all time favorite songs — “Mix Tape” by Butch Walker. I think it’s from one of the One Tree Hill soundtracks which makes it doubly awesome.
Did you make mix tapes? Did you make them for yourself or for someone else (yeehee!)?
*Title of post from Butch Walker’s “Mixtape”
*I got deja vu writing this post and after searching through my archives realized I had written about mix tapes before. AND I had the Butch Walker song lyrics. Haha!
Ahoy there, Sim matey! I guess I possess the “Lucky” Sims trait because I got a promotional code for the world of Barnacle Bay. Here’s a review of the new world as seen through the eyes of my Sim.
Meet Katherine Sparrow. She’s never felt at home at Riverview or Sunset Valley – must be the desire for adventure in her genes. She’s brave, charismatic, handy, a hopeless romantic and dramatic. Upon learning about a new place called Barnacle Bay, she immediately packed her bags and moved into a quaint little home that overlooked the ocean. When she saw the steering wheel letterbox, she knew she had found her world.
Avast, me Simaholics! Want your Sims to go “Aaarrrrr!”? I don’t know what pirate speak will sound like in Simlish, but it would be interesting to find out. Electronic Arts has released their new downloadable expansion called Barnacle Bay. New objects! New locations! New characters! My favorite — new clothes and hairstyles weeeeee!
Here’s the trailer. Aarrrr!!!
Barnacle Bay can be downloaded from The Sims 3 store. You need 1,650 Sim Points to purchase it. Aaarrr!!! Now that wasn’t pirate speak but more of a frustrated “Aaarrr.” I’ll get this game soon!
Added 10.10.10: More Barnacle Bay screenshots after the jump!
Last month (a.k.a. some days ago. can you believe it’s August already?!) I joined Witsandnuts’ birthday giveaway contest. Guess what? I won! Woohoo! The package came right before my birthday too, so it was a pleasant birthday surprise for me.
In the loot bag: Burj Dubai notebook (with an adorable sweater cover), Burj Dubai CD album (also with an adorable sweater cover), Wits’ favorite ref magnet, a set of Burj Khalifa postcards and best of all, a personal handwritten note from Wits herself. You don’t see that many handwritten notes nowadays now, do you?
Thank you, dear Wits, for this awesome birthday surprise. You were giving it out for your birthday, and I got it close to mine! It was meant to be. Haha!