Christmas in the Philippines

As soon as the -ber months hit the Philippines, meaning from September to December, you will hear Christmas songs being played on the radio. Popular tunes like Jose Mari Chan’s Christmas in Our Hearts , Gary Valenciano’s Pasko na Sinta Ko ( It’s Christmas, Darling) and Pasko Na Naman Muli ( roughly translated as It’s Christmas Once Again).

Christmas is the best time for everyone in the Philippines because families are gathered and spend time together. It usually includes lavish food preparations with all the relatives. Some families spend it at a hotel and have Christmas dinner there. Celebrations vary depending upon the familiy’s preferences.

I will be showing photos of Christmas displays located in public areas like malls, and the like. Here are some of my favorite displays:

 

SM City Sucat Walt Disney’s Cars themed Christmas Tree

With reference to the movie Cars, the tree is made up of rubber tires. Beside the tree is a Disney signage you can take a photo with.

 

Teddy Bear Christmas Tree, SM City Sucat

Huge Christmas Tree display in Cubao,Quezon City

I attended an event in Eastwood, and heading for home, you wouldn’t miss passng by Cubao, near Araneta Center. I saw this huge tree wherein people are taking selfies with.I took the chance and made a trying hard selfie as well.

 

Christmas Displays at Santana Grove, Paranaque City

City of Dreams Casino Christmas Display

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Blogapalooza Fever: The Experts Talk(Part 3)

This is the last installment of my Blogapalooza experience last November 18. I made two blogposts on Blogapalooza in general, and the souvenirs that I got from the event. I am sharing to you what transpired during that time. The highlights of Blogapalooza are the talks from different personas of the digital industry.

For starters, I am sharing to you the program flow for Generation D series of talks:

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Mr. Kris Ablan shares to us the involvement of the present government with social media, that we bloggers are being encouraged to be a part of it. I think this is very important for people here in the Philippines to be aware of what’s happening in the country, and what President Duterte is doing for the country.  He also informs the audience of the plans of the government to have better internet services so that no one is left out in this digital age.

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Media practitioners Niccolo Cosme, Anna Oposa, Justin Joyas , and Jayne Uymatiao shared their thoughts on how to effectively use social media to promote awareness and to spread good. They also reminded the audience to exercise due diligence when reading news, and discern whether it’s real or fake.

 

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Up next is the talk on Video Content and Distribution Strategy wherein Micco Solis, Lyqa Maravilla, Gian Viterbo, and Lloyd Cadena share their experience in putting up YouTube videos. Dennis Lim, the moderator, and representative for Adober Studios, shares to the audience what topics are trending in the video world, and videos from Adober Studios YouTube page that made an impact with its countless viewers.

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Up next is Mario Domingo , a tech expert, who shares his knowledge on artificial intelligence. I saw a video from ANC 24/7 where anchor Tony Velasquez interviews him. This video helps to make us understand better what artificial intelligence is all about.

(Photo credit source: Upgrademag.com)

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(Video from Facebook ANC 24/7 )

(Video from YouTube Rappler page)

 

Next up are people in the business and agency world Donald Lim, Norman Agatep, Jane Villa and Jason Cruz who share their expertise in the agency, business, and influencer relationships.

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Next up are Internet rockstars Ramon Bautista, Louise delos Reyes, Kim Cruz and Joyce Pring. They shared with us their experiences with social media, and how it has help them launch their careers.

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A group of mentalists entertained us with their show called Mind Play. They remind me of the things that mentalist David Blaine does. All of their acts blew me away especially the last one wherein he did astral projection. He asks a volunteer to think of a place in her head, and recreate it in her mind where she’s been. Aside from that, he also calls in a medical professional present among the audience to take his vital signs, and announce if it was slowing down and stopping. Then he was able to guess what the girl was thinking, (the place is Saranggani) and even gave her a handful of sand that he got from Saranggani the volunteer was imagining.

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Mr. Daniel Meyer shares in a nutshell how analytics help blogger analyze their corresponding blog or video’s reach.

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Carlo Ople of unbox.ph shares to us to that in order to be good at something, you need to spend 10,000 hours with it. He encourages us to spend our time wisely, and use that time to be productive, and not waste away doing nothing.

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Attorney JJ Disini shares his knowledge on protecting ourselves legally while we use social media.

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I am looking forward to future Blogapalooza events. It was a success, and I met new people through this event. My friends Aileen, Johaness, and I took our time to have photos at the venue as well. I enjoyed every minute that I was in here.

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Blogapalooza Fever: Awesome Haul (Part 2)

Last November 18, I just a most awaited event for bloggers and Vloggers called Blogapalooza. I am excited to share with you the plethora of souvenirs that I got from the event.

For starters here’s the ID I got upon registration.

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Coke Studio gave away personalized Coca Cola bottles. There’s a machine that looks like a jukebox, stationed in their booth that processes this. You may visit Coke Studio’s Facebook page here.

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Then, I also got this cool eco bag that you can use when doing your grocery shopping. Inside the bag are two Coca Cola products in a can and plastic bottle. I got the extras from a friend who joined as well. The Philippines is slowly moving away from using plastic bags to more sustainable friendly canvas bags. I hope that all stores eventually stop using plastic bags because it harms the animals, especially those who live in the ocean.

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Next up, I got this sampler of Nestea’s new milk tea product in Winter Melon flavor. For more info about their products, please visit the Nestea official Facebook Page here.

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Another sampler I got is called the Wilkin’s Delight drinks. It’s water infused with fruit flavors.  For questions, check out the Wilkins Water Facebook Page here.

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Blogapalooza attendees also got discounts for joining. I also got gift certificates from KimStore and Zalora.com.ph. Aside from this I got an email of a 30 percent discount when attendees avail of their calling cards.

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The booths gave away prizes. I won this giveaway keychain that also doubles as a mirror from Alfox Printing Services.  Aside from that I also got a card about their countless services, and a notepad.

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I love the color of this  carboard Adober Studios fan. Perfect for the warm weather here in the Philippines.  You may also visit Adober Studios YouTube page to view the videos. According to their official Facebook Page, “Adober Studios formerly known as Chicken Pork Adobo is ABS-CBN’s multi-channel network initiative structured to build a roster of online personalities with innovative ideas.”

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Business cards of the booth exhibitors and from attendees of the event itself.

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Finally, I got this awesome Blogapalooza pen. I love collecting pens!

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I am looking forward to attend more Blogapalooza events in the future. I want to learn more, and meet new people. Thank you Team Blogapalooza for making this possible. To learn more about Blogapalooza, please visit their official page here  .

 

 

 

 

 

That Blogapalooza Fever (Part I)

Last Saturday November 18, I got the chance to attend one of the coolest events for bloggers, and vloggers as well. It’s called the Blogapalooza and according to their official website,  their goal is to ” connect businesses and influencers directly.” Prior to this, I registered to the event to reserve a spot. I checked my email, and I saw my Blogamomma confirmation e-mail. Voila! All set for the event.

I did a bit of research about Blogapalooza from previous years. It’s so cool to know that the event is going to be held at the City of Dreams in Pasay City. It’s my first time to go to such a grand place.  So yeah, I feel this is going to be one awesome day. Aside from that, I also got to invite friends like Axl, Aileen, and Johannes, people whom I met  from a previous PayPal event that I attended in Alabang.

(stock photo of City of Dreams Photo courtesy of alamy.com)

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When I got to City of Dreams, I was just there in time to witness the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony. After that, the Blogapalooza has officially opened. Going inside the ballroom, I got to see the different booths available. I made a mental note of each booth, and decided to check it out later. I wanted to listen to the talks of various speakers so I made a beeline for the seats instead. I was lucky to find a front row seat which gave me a full view of the stage with the official Blogapalooza logo.

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City of Dreams Grand Ballroom photo by Johannes Bangao
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City of Dreams Grand Ballroom photo by Johannes Bangao

The event officially opens with the hosts Karla, and Ian introducing Ace Gapuz, Chief Executive Officer of Blogapalooza. Ace welcomes attendees with warm opening remarks.

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Chief Executive Officer Blogapalooza Ace Gapuz

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For starters, I review today’s program, and infographic that I got from my confirmation  email.  Wow! There’s so much to look forward to today.

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Program Flow of the Blogapalooza event
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Cool Blogapalooza infographic

Here’s a list of booths  at the event namely:

RAPPLER.com

Wilkins Coca Cola

Tralulu.com

Beauty and Butter Nail Spa

Adober Studios

StyleGenie PH

CokeStudio PH

VOffice

AAP Analytics DMAIPH

Alfox Printing Services

Wizher

GoMoto Philippines

Here are some of the booths that I visited such as Wilkins Coca Cola. They have drinks on display.

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I was surprised to see Team Style Genie in the event. I met Abbie Victorino for the first at another event fromm Woomen.ph called Beauty Deconstructed. It’s so nice to see her here!

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The Beauty and Butter booth for nail spa afficionados.

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I also got another surprise when I met Chris in here. I met her from a previous event as well, from Woomen.ph’s Beauty Deconstructed workshop.  Small world indeed!

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This is the Coke Studio booth which makes your personalized Coca Cola bottle.

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My personalized Coca Cola bottle. Hurray!

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GoMoto Philippines booth

 

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Alfox Printing Services Prizes

 

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Games that you can play at the event

 

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Kristian Guevara and Andrew Cua of TraLuLu.com

 

Present as well, were noteworthy personalities who graced the event such as Lloyd Cadena, Joyce Pring, Louise delos Reyes, Kim Cruz, and Ramon Bautista.

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Internet Rockstars From left to right:  Ramon Bautista, Louise delos Reyes, Kim Cruz, and Joyce Pring

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Video Content and Distribution Strategy Left to right: Lyqa Maravilla, Gian Viterbo, Miccolo Solis, and Lloyd Cadena

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Photo op with Lloyd Cadena

 

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Meeting Jai during breaktime. Jai is also a blogger and a nurse. I am glad to learn that we have common interests too. Her blog is jai-munoz.com
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With awesome friends Finance expert Aileen Ello and and Travel blogger Johannes Bangao of wanderera.com

I will post the next installment of this blog post on Sunday and Tuesday. I will my Blogapalooza haul and photos about more new people I met, Team Blogapalooza, and the speakers themselves during the event. Thank you for reading!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Christmas Beauty Gift Ideas

The holidays are coming. While it’s still November, now is the time to get that shopping list and look for that perfect gift for your friends. The stores at this time are still not crowded so you can waltz your way as you scour the aisle for presents and singing , “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas” in your best Alvin and the Chipmunks voice. I am just kidding.

Most of the products listed here are available in the Philippines. These are merely suggestions, and it’s up to you to choose what to give your friends. Of course, you have to know what your friends preferences and likes are before choosing any gift to give to them.

I like receiving shower gels, lotions, perfume, and of course, makeup.

Here are some cool gifts that you can get for your beauty savvy friends in no particular order:

PINK SUGAR PRODUCTS

Pink Sugar is a brand here in the Philippines that caters to makeup. Yes, these products are getting good reviews from beauty bloggers here. So far, I like their Sugar Tint Lip and Cheek Tint. I am trying out other colors aside from the nude liquid lippie I have in the Honey Bunny Shade shown below. You may visit their website here. Yes, Pink Sugar is  a cruelty- free as well.

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SHEET MASKS FROM WATSONS 

Watsons is a beauty and drug store here in the Philippines. Yes, they sell sheet masks of all brands, and variants. You’ll find affordable masks ranging from the least amount of 60 Philippines Pesos to more expensive ones. I can stay inside this store all day, and just look around at the different products that they’re selling.

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SPANISH COLOGNE NENUCO

Your friends who love Nenuco will surely love this. When you put this on you, the smell  stays all day long, even on your clothes.

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BURT’S BEES PRODUCTS

I love Burt’s Bees products especially the Soap Bark and Chamomile Deep Cleansing Cream. They smell good and  they’re handy too. The products are perfect to bring when you go to work, or travel and you don’t want a makeup bag that’s bulky.

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HAND SOAP FROM WATSONS

These are affordable liquid hand soap from Watson’s.  These are available on a buy one take one basis. The Green Tea scent is what I like the best. Aside from these, their shower gels are also awesome. You may visit their official website in this link

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BOXES OF TWININGS TEA

Personally, I prefer the Earl Grey tea flavor (Aside from the fact that it’s the name of my bunny too). I love the aromatic smell it produces when I pour hot water over the tea bag. Aside from that, I can add milk and it becomes milk tea. I got this Pure Darjeeling variant when I attended a wedding reception at Vikings Luxury Buffet Restaurant here in the Philippines. You can visit the following sites here below:

Twinings Philippines

Twinings UK

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Earl Grey the bunny
My bunny Earl Grey when he was a baby. He’s going to be three next year!

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Photo Credit (Most photos are mine, except when indicated)

Earl Grey Tea photo from Lazada.com

 

Getting Over the Fear

They say that when you dream about water, it represents one thing: PROBLEM. There may be a problem in a person’s life right now. The severity of the problem can be seen with regards to the type of water that appears in the dream. Is it deep? Is it clean or dirty? For me, I think the water in my dream represents my fear.

This fear is deeply evident in my favorite book called The Velveteen Rabbit. Yes, I can relate with the little bunny here whose only wish is to be loved. He got the love from the most important people in his life. Yet there were some characters in the book that  made the bunny feel unloved.

There will be times that you will meet people who are brimming with negativity to the core. Name that character, they have it. Bad, crass, evil,  rude, and all other awful descriptions you can think of. Initially, the autopilot response is to be afraid. However, if we let their negative behavior affect us, we will be living in fear for the rest of our lives.

 

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For the last years of my life, Fear is that one thing I am having trouble with when I am about to start something new.  Next week, I am planning to look for employment. My options are in the BPO industry. I am considering working as an email support agent in either in Cubao or here in my hometown Paranaque. I am postponing my Nursing career because I have to renew my license, and update my skills. It’s been a long while since I have practiced my Nursing profession. I worked in a hospital for two years.

I have uncertainties in my head because I am in my late 30s. What if they don’t accept me?  Unfortunately, ageism is one concern that every Filipino person faces here in my country. Right now, I am working out my brains looking for ways to earn passive income that even when I retire, I can still earn and do the things that I love.

Why does fear persist? The reasons people have vary, and it’s all dependent upon their past life experiences related to anger, hate, shame or other life situations that others may deem as unworthy such as poverty, mishandled finances, relationship mistakes, and many more to mention. People have different responses to such crises. Some take the bull by the horns. Some choose to walk away from the problem. Some smile on the outside, but inside their being they are crushed.

Regardless of our circumstances, what is the answer to getting over fear? Simple. We have to acknowledge that we have this fear, yet we are going to do something about it.

I respect people’s coping mechanisms. I can’t force them to overcome it immediately especially if the life experience is a traumatic one. It needs time to be processed.

But the first step to dealing with the fear is to face it squarely. For starters, we need to have a life line. We need our support system for this situation. It can be anyone you trust, a family, a friend, a best friend, your spiritual director.  It’s up to you.  We all have a person who is our lifeline, right? I know it’s not easy, but it’s all about taking baby steps.

It’s not too late to start over. Face your fear. I am leaving you with an inspirational song from Clean Bandit’s Stronger, and Jess Glynne’s Hold My Hand, and Don’t Be So Hard on Yourself

 

Credits:

YouTube Clean Bandit video link Stronger 

YouTube Jess Glynne Hold My Hand

YouTube Jess Glynne Don’t Be So Hard on Yourself 

The Velveteen Rabbit book cover  link

 

Philippines National Inventor’s Fair

I was going to WalterMart with my dad here in Paranaque when we saw this Philippine Inventor’s exhibition. I am excited to go to these events because I get a chance to see the talent of Filipino inventors. 

I am suddenly reminded of my  favorite character Tinker Bell. If you have seen the Disney  movie about Tinker Bell ‘s life,  you’ll see how she became an innovator. 

The Philippines is  a country rich in natural resources. It is good to see my country men paving the way for new products. Sustainability is the way to go for incoming Filipino entrepreneurs. It’s also a way to show love for one’s country. 

I met  Sir Manuel , inventor of the Universal Grill. He is friendly and approachable. I even encouraged him to keep up the good work. He thanked me for such inspiring words. 

Oh yes,  there are beauty products too like Herbosido Herbal Oils. 

Nature’s Skin Botanicals

Vin’s Herbal Oil

A lot of Philippine products are improving.  Especially in the makeup world. Particularly you’ll see these in brands such as Ever Bilena,  and Careline. I like their liquid  lipsticks. There are beauty influencers who came up with their own makeup line like Liz Lanuzo, founder of Project Vanity, and celebrities like Vice Ganda and Anne Curtis. Happy Skin is another Philippine brand of makeup as well that you can check out. I will be doing reviews on these products by next year. I also plan to take make-up classes, and learn about the technical side of make-up. 

I hope there will be more people who will create more products that help boost the Philippine economy.  I would encourage the younger generation,especially for those who have the knack for tinkering.