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Something for me

Recently, I’ve thrown myself into training for my upcoming half marathon and committed to practicing yoga at least five times or more per week if possible. Friends have been asking, why the sudden obsession? What prompted this need to exercise every day? The short answer is I decided to do a half marathon and when I commit to something I follow through (barring any outside forces). But really, it boils down to my love of running and yoga and how they’re the only real places I get space to think, meditate, be on my own, and restore my mind. Basically, this is something for me and me alone. Yes, my “me time.” As you progress further along the journey that is motherhood, you begin to fully grasp the necessity of earmarking time that is just for you. If you don’t, you will undoubtedly be discontent. You …

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Warning: Lady driver

“Babae kasi ‘yung driver,”—a common phrase among men drivers who still think that they are superior to women, that women can’t drive because they’re women, a discriminating and stereotyping phrase that has to change. Contrary to popular belief, women are not at all bad drivers. Men and women can be good drivers if they want to. The bad drivers are those who don’t have proper driving habits and are ignorant of the rules. These stereotypes are better left ignored. A study conducted last year by Privilege Insurance declares that women drivers are better after scoring significantly higher than men in various categories on driving safety and speed. Papers and researches provided by many other insurance providers say the same thing, which is the reason behind the fact that women pay a lot less for car insurance. …

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Captivating Croatia

When our friends informed us that their wedding was going to be in Croatia I was looking forward to it, but not in a bucket-list anticipatory sort of way. The country wasn’t one of my “must-visit” destinations and only popped up on my radar after seeing it in Game of Thrones. Our itinerary didn’t even have Dubrovnik (King’s Landing!) on it as it was too far a drive from where we were. We kept mainly to the north because the wedding venue was in Porec. I have to say that David and I were pleasantly surprised by the gorgeousness of North Croatia. It is a Mediterranean country of vast scenic beauty (which we only touched the surface of), quaint seaside towns, delicious farm/sea-to-table food, and friendly locals. We spent every day …

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A grand salute to Teachers

Many children dream of becoming doctors, lawyers, or engineers. Some who are artistically inclined see themselves as sculptors, pianists, or painters. Still others desire to be beauty queens, racecar drivers, or even poets. The beauty of youth is such that one feels anything and everything can be achieved. But nobody ever became anybody just by wishing it. In order to become adept at any chosen field, one has to learn from good teachers. Give, Guide, Educate Gabay Guro, the education flagship program of PLDT Smart foundation under the directive of Manuel V. Pangilinan, has been assisting “would be teachers” and full-fledged educators for the past nine years. “Beyond the numerous scholarships that we have given out, we try to include pillars depending on the teachers’needs. Over the years, we have included trainings, …

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Baby bites

By Empress Schuck Photos by Nice Print Photography Motherhood truly is the greatest adventure that any woman can take. From the moment I got pregnant, life became a series of learning new things and anticipating many ‘firsts’ with my one-year-old Athalia, who celebrated her birthday last Sept. 27. The First Few Bites I began feeding Athalia more solids when she was six months old. The shift wasn’t easy for either of us. At first, Athalia would seem to refuse, moving her head left to right when I would try to feed her solids. This is highly common among babies, according to our pediatrician, because they are not familiar yet with the taste. The secret is to slowly introduce new tastes and textures to their diet. For Athalia, it was easier to begin with bottled baby …

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Parenting with technology

It's going to be nine months of mood swings, cravings, stress, and big changes on your body. Pregnancy, no matter how joyful the fact that you're carrying another life inside you, is no easy journey, and moms need all the help they can get, not just from their husband and relatives, but from other mothers as well. A safer birth is what every mom desires, and organizations from both the government and private sectors work actively together to build a dedicated community for this, for moms to have a pregnancy with minimal to no complication "First-time parents, most especially, need to have access to or communicate with third parties that can provide them with correct information, which will lessen their anxiety and improve their disposition about pregnancy," says Department of Health (DOH) spokesperson Dr. Eric Tayag. According to the DOH, there are at least …

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How to say bye to yaya!

Dear Suzi and Paolo, I would appreciate your advice and tips on how to prepare my toddler for his beloved yaya’s departure. My son is so attached to his yaya, and I’m worried that when she goes, he might get depressed. What can I do to ease the transition? —Lisa Suzi says: Hello there, Lisa! Thanks for writing in! We’ve definitely been in a similar situation before so I can understand your concern. A good yaya is indeed a blessing so when she is beloved but has to leave, it is quite stressful for the whole family.  Our eldest daughter had a yaya, Michelle, who was an excellent caregiver. She had to go back to the province because she was about to get married. I didn’t know what to do! So eventually we decided to …

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Eureka!

Two weeks ago I wrote about how I have been seeking outside assistance for behavioral issues besieging us at home with my eldest child. Not only have I been amassing volumes of parenting strategy books, advice from veteran parents, and scouring the internet for magical solutions but the three of us (Kieran, David, and myself) have been going to a "multi-disciplinary therapy center for children which helps provide parents and children with a holistic and effective intervention for challenges they may face." This is because, as you may have gathered, I was at my wits' end with no real solutions to our plight. It's been a month in and I am already seeing the benefits of our therapy. Yesterday, David and I went to our solo session with the social skills therapist to discuss the improvements (or lack thereof if that was the case) in Kieran's …

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Great expectations

Paolo Valenciano has always been bullish about having a baby girl with his wife of three years, Samantha, who is set to give birth to their first child in late October. "I just felt that I wanted to have a daughter," the 31-year-old actor/musician/concert and events director said at the baby shower organized last Sept. 10 by Aprica, a Japanese brand of babystrollers. "The moment she got pregnant, I already said, 'We're going to name her Leia.' And then she said, 'Leia? We're not even sure if it's a boy or a girl.' [I said,] 'No, no, it's a girl. So when I found out that it was a girl nga, I really." He takes a brief pause. "I broke down," he unabashedly admits. "And I really got emotional. To this day, every time I see movies with father and daughter, I get really emotional. She's not as emotional as me." "He's more …

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Oh Mickey!

A visit to any Disney Park anywhere in the world will tell you that everybody loves Mickey Mouse. He is the official mascot of Disneyland and almost always occupies the very last float in any theme park parade. Created in 1928, Mickey has proven that he is as popular today as he was back when he was first introduced to the public via the black and white short feature Steamboat Willie. Two years later, the Mickey Mouse club was born (Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, and would you believe even Ryan Gosling were once all part of this kiddie crew) which further cemented the beloved character as a worldwide icon. It used to be that you could only purchase official Disney merchandise when you traveled outside the country. Now, local clothing brand Folded & Hung has once again partnered with Disney to create a …

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