Hello 2016, Goodbye 2015

The past year has been an amazing year. Not just for me, but I think for my entire family. The addition of bunny in our family was such a blessing in our lives. All of us realized how important family really is versus work. I seriously want to insert the quote, wait I mean speech, here from the former Coke CEO Bryan Dyson, I’m hesitant because it might seem a bit too obvious but well I know that words in photos work more vs. words alone:

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The most important part of his speech is the last bit wherein he mentioned that people should work efficiently during office hours and leave on time. In my line of work, some people would think that it is impossible to do so (I work in media/advertising wherein we are deemed to be always on) but it is possible. I was able to survive a year without going overtime. Yes, there were times wherein I had to work at home but I do so when my bunny is sound asleep. Overall though it is possible to survive without going overtime, you just have to learn how to prioritize things. Some people might think I’m crazy but if you really work efficiently it can happen (meaning don’t stalk people’s updates by always checking your Facebook Newsfeed, learn how to use your time well, learn how to say no and to ask for extensions if needed, don’t stalk people’s updates (again because I see people do this a lot at work, really you can do that when you are stuck in traffic and not at work), and take care of your personal updates on your favorite shows/sports/artists/etc. at home or when you are commuting). Another thing is that you just have to learn to accept that not all tasks can be finished in a day (this took a lot of time before I finally accepted this truth) but to make sure that you meet your deadlines (I guess this is a big deal for me because I’m a journ graduate and a prof of mine told me before that if we don’t learn the importance of meeting deadlines we are dead).

I realized that bunny was more important than career, although I still have a lot of career goals I know when to hold back to be there for her. Have I ever thought of quitting? I would be lying if I said no, because there was a part of me that cried buckets when my maternity leave was about to end. Why did I go back? Simply because I love what I do. Even if I rant here and there about work at the end of the day I find myself going the extra mile because I love what I do.

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The past year made me realize that it is possible to have both, an amazing family and a thriving career. Although difficult at times (like Vibering during holidays and wee hours of the day while breastfeeding bunny) it is possible.

That is why I welcome 2016 with arms wide open. Ready to receive whatever will be thrown at me because now I am a year older, I am aware of what is important to my life, and I am aware that every year brings a learning opportunity that will help me grow more as a person, as a mom, as a career woman.

My Take on Beef Lasagna

I am not a cook, E can attest to this. I do try to whip up a few recipes here and there especially if I am in the mood. For Christmas and New Year, E had a special request for me. He wanted me to make Lasagna and Baked Macaroni (next post will be my Baked Mac recipe). I have not cooked/baked either of the two EVER in my LIFE so I had no clue as to how I would go about it.

For Baked Lasagna, I checked numerous websites and was able to come up with this recipe. Most recipes that you would see online would ask for 2 or 3 or more cheeses. I didn’t have access to that so I just became extra crafty and made use of the ingredients that I can buy at the local market. Based on what I have read, the key to Lasagna is the special Bechamel Sauce. What exactly is the Bechamel Sauce? It’s that creamy cheese sauce in between the meat sauce and the next lasagna layer. In other words, heaven! In other countries there is an over the counter tub that you can buy, but of course it would be best if you just make your own from scratch!

So here’s my Baked Lasagna Recipe!

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Ingredients:

  • 500 g cooked Lasagna (in boiling water just like how you cook ordinary pasta)
  • 1 quick melt Eden Cheese
  • 1 ordinary Eden Cheese/ Ques-O

For the Meat Sauce:

  • 500 g Ground Beef
  • 1 can (big) Jolly Mushroom
  • 1 big Italian Spag Sauce of Del Monte
  • 2 cans of Vienna Sausage
  • Half of any Christmas Ham
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste
  • Oil
  • Garlic
  • Onion

For the Bechamel Sauce:

  • 1/3 bar of Dairy Creme Butter
  • 1 bar of Eden Cheese Quick Melt grated
  • 2 All Purpose Cream Nestle
  • 1 Three Cheese Sauce of Clara Ole
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste

Procedure:

  1. In a sauce pan, heat oil and saute onion first. Once translucent saute garlic as well.
  2. Add in the ground beef and wait until it browns (stir occasionally)
  3. Saute mushroom with beef
  4. Add the Italian Spag Sauce and wait for it to simmer
  5. Once it simmers add the sliced up Vienna Sausage and Christmas Ham (cubed)
  6. Add salt and pepper to taste
  7. Set aside – Note don’t add water.
  8. Cook lasagna noodles while you make the  bechamel sauce
  9. For the bechamel sauce, in another sauce pan pour in one All Purpose Cream and the pack of Three Cheese Sauce.
  10. Simmer and add the butter (slice it up)
  11. Grate the Eden Cheese Quick Melt
  12. Add the other All Purpose Cream
  13. Add salt and pepper to taste

Now for the fun part! Layering the Lasagna!

lasagna

 

  1. In an aluminum pan pour a bit of meat sauce
  2. Arrange one layer of lasagna
  3. Put meat sauce and then bechamel sauce
  4. Do this alternately
  5. After the last layer of bechamel sauce grate the Eden Cheese Quick Melt and Ques-O
  6. Cover the pan with foil and bake for 30 – 45 minutes until the cheese on top completely melts

 

 

Bunny’s McDo Celebrations Birthday Hooplah

Three months before her birthday, E and I discussed about bunny’s birthday. At first I wanted to just have a simple family dinner, I mean we really don’t celebrate the first birthday for the little one. I think it is more for the mum’s and dad’s, a pat in the back (HEY YOU SURVIVED ONE YEAR AND YOUR BABY IS ALIVE AND HEALTHY). E however encouraged me to throw her a small party, she may not remember it but we certainly don’t want to look back and feel bad about not celebrating her birthday with our closest friends and relatives, right?

So, we decided to check out Jolibee and McDonalds. Fortunately those two fast food chains opened nearby (just around 5 minutes from home) so we were able to visit before her big day. Bad things is that Jollibee had limited space (read here: no place for a birthday party) so we ended up picking McDo. At first I was saddened, I wanted her to have her birthday in Jollibee just because she likes the mashed potato and spag. This however was a blessing in disguise. After reading about reviews of Jollibee and McDo parties I discovered that more mums say that McDo is better. Most mums cited that Jollibee has a tendency to rush your party and is a bit more expensive. So, fate really wanted us to have the better deal (YAY!)

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The theme we chose for her birthday was the Adventure Time theme (this is also a plus for McDo because in Jollibee you can only choose from the Jollibee Theme or the Hello Kitty Theme – with McDo you have four options!). The giveaways from McDo also had this theme and of course the cake I requested from my aunt had to have the same theme!

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Bunny’s actual birthday hooplah in McDo was short and sweet. We just had around 50 of our closest friends and relatives. Of course, at first Bunny was a bit hesitant to go around and play with the other humans.

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I mean there were more adult humans than tiny humans like herself! She was particularly scared with my Uncle, can’t blame the kid he was super gigil with her! She kept on crying whenever my aunt or mum or even her dad carries her. She’s only comfy when I’m the one carrying her or when it’s my brother (her uncle monkey) carrying her (so young, but already with her preferences).

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The main struggle I had was whether she will like the spag or not, but oh well,  I think she likes it a lot and loves to eat it like a boss!

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The games were super fun, especially the one for the adult humans – the pass, dribble, exhibition. Complicated mechanics but they got it!

After the games and the eating part, the crew brought in Hamburglar! Of course I was a tad bit disappointed because I thought it was going to be Grimace, but again fate has its way of turning up things for the best. Alex loved him! She was smiling and dancing when he came in. Everybody seemed to gush when they saw her dancing and I was just there staring at her smiling and having fun.

Mum! Who is that person???

Mum! Who is that person???

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We sang to her after Hamburglar’s appearance, and although they asked me to say something for her I just said that I love her.

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I can’t really say anything else because the party area might end up like a tiny pool filled with my tears (happy tears of course). That tiny human changed me, her dad, and everybody else around her. It was a short, sweet, and fun party. I surely had fun and I’m sure that she had fun too.

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As usual, we blew out the candles for her and had a photo-op with Hamburglar. We weren’t rushed as well, compared to the Jollibee celebrations based on other mums feedback. Her guests were even able to have a photo-op as well.

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After the party, the staff fixed all of the gifts. We settled the remaining half of the bill after the party. All in all, we spent just around P20k for her birthday. We had excess food, so some guests were able to take home some as well (plus additional giveaway – the lunchbox and notebook). It was money well spent because we didn’t think about the venue, the food, the actual program. All we had to do was focus on bunny and our guests. How about you? Have you tried throwing a birthday at McDo or Jollibee?

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12 Months and Counting

Yesterday, my little girl turned one! (YAAAAY)

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I met my first big goal as her mum, which is to breastfeed her exclusively for a year. Great big pat on the back for me (woot woot!). I never really thought that I will be able to complete breastfeeding my tiny human for 12 whole months! Why? I usually hear moms saying (even my own mum) that the milk just goes away after 6 months or that the milk is not enough that is why they switch to formula or they get sick and switch to formula. While I totally understand mummies who mix feed or formula feed their tiny humans, I had set that goal of mine even before she was born and I was determined to keep at it for as long as I can.

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To say that my breastfeeding journey was a walk to the park would be an untrue documentation of my experience. I did go through a lot of downs which almost made me quit in giving her my liquid gold, but discipline, determination, and confidence in myself helped me push through. (ACHIEVE!) I mean, I experienced having an extremely low output (at 2-3 oz per pump) when I had to deal with extreme work deliverables paired with 5 hours of sleep. Still I pushed through and decided to help myself by going crazy over lactation treats.

treats

 

The biggest challenge I faced was acquiring chicken pox! In my mind, how will I continue breastfeeding my bunny when I have pox all over my body? Can I breastfeed her even if I have it? Can I still pump even I have pox? Will my meds be bad for her?

So I researched and researched, and I did find the answer thanks to the breastfeeding groups I was a member of. I persisted in breastfeeding her. My aunt, mum, dad, and e took care of her while I was sick. I pumped in the morning, but eventually direct latched her just making sure that I cover my whole body and just expose ’em mountains. I will hand her off to my mum, dad, aunt, or e after. I wasn’t allowed to carry her or kiss her or hug her until the pox faded. At night, before we enter our room I sprayed lots and lots of Lysol and again covered my whole body, just exposing ’em mountains as she slept next to me. This was us for a week and a half. Thankfully she never got the pox, and I succeeded in breastfeeding her even if I had the pox. (If you have it and your breastfeeding, suggest you continue breastfeeding. Chicken pox has a two week incubation period meaning your tiny human was already exposed to it so she actually needs your milk more!)

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Now, even if I hear other people telling me that I don’t have milk anymore and should switch to formula I just say no. I still have a bigger goal in mind, which is to breastfeed her for 2 years. I have learned from my experience that you need not have expensive electric pumps or a freezer filled with breast milk just to succeed in your choice to breastfeed your tiny human. What you need is:

  1. Confidence and support – this is the most important thing, mommy! You need to believe in yourself, that you can do it. When you believe in your body’s capability to provide for your tiny human you will see that your milk will keep on flowing. Of course you will need support from your hubby. Don’t mind what other people say, but you should get him on the same boat. Thankfully E is very supportive, he is a registered nurse so he knows the benefits of breastmilk
  2. Discipline and Determination – This is second most important must have mum. As a working mommy, I have scheduled pumping sessions. Thrice a day, every 3 hours. So that’s at 10 AM/1 PM/4 PM. Of course there are times when I miss out on a pumping session, but I make sure that I make up for it the next day. It’s a law of supply and demand at work here. When you pump you empty the milk out which triggers your body to produce milk again. You should also set goals for yourself, just so that you will be determined to keep at your breastfeeding journey milk
  3. Water, lots of water – Drink as many as you possibly can. Seriously! You need it. You will even fill that thirst that seems to never go away every time your tiny human nurses or when you pump. (Just as if you are in a dessert for days)
  4. Support Group of Breastfeeding Moms – This I found through Breastfeeding Pinays and Breastfeeding Advocates Group on Facebook. I learned a lot of things from mums and also got support from mums here.

I’m finished with my first big goal, now I am back to my tiny goals. Aim now is to meet 15 mos!

3 months to go

90 days

2,160 hrs

129,600 minutes

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Advance Reward for Bunny’s First Year

It has been a year, already. ALREADY! Now I fully get what other parent’s or grandparents mean when they say that time flies by so fast. It does! I honestly wanted to hit the pause button, but of course we don’t have the awesome remote from Click. This meant enjoying each and every single moment that we have with Bunny.

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11 months and 20 days…

Each single day has been magical and unforgettable because of Bunny. I never thought that having her would change so much in our lives. She made our days brighter and our nights better. Her laughter made the house a home, something that we all needed to have a change in perspective,  a change in viewing life. With her I noticed that E and I would save up as much as we could from our salaries and buy stuff for her. E even noticed that I have been super kuripot for the past few months, exchanging baby clothes for the usual mani pedis and baby shoes for my own pair of slip ons. Ah motherhood changed me to that extra kuripot woman I never thought was inside of me! Well, I was one before but the belt got extra tight when she came.

If before I always bought a pair or two of strappy sandals or shoes and a shirt or two or a dress every month, I now bought clothes at least just once every four months and sandals once every 6 months. Not because I didn’t want to (hello I love clothes and shoes) but because I wanted Bunny to have everything that she needed plus more. E was the same as well. And he said that he doesn’t need anything new as long as Bunny has everything that she needs.

I guess this was the reason why we felt extra guilty when we went out shopping yesterday. The goal was simple, buy new clothes for ourselves as well as shoes. The shopping part for the clothes bit was easy, because they didn’t cost that much (well of course if you add all up it will be a lot), but the shoes bit was difficult! We already had allotted a certain budget for it, but really it was excruciating to spend for ourselves.

We went around looking for shoes for E and we already picked one for him, but he was muttering that he felt guilty to which I replied that he needed it! He did! He was going on and on about how he didn’t need one and that men’s shoes are a tad more expensive than women’s shoes. I just kept on repeating to his ear that he needed it and that we wouldn’t be going home without one!

When it was my time to pick out my pair of shoes, I felt extra guilty as well. In my head that pair of Keds can already buy bunny 4 educational wooden toys, lots of dresses or ternos. I had a flashback of that wooden toy I wanted to buy for her. I started telling myself that I didn’t need it. As if he heard what was going on in my mind, E whispered that I needed it especially when we go to Bunny’s bi-weekly check-ups at Asian Hospital or when we go out with her. With a heavy heart I said fine but we had to buy her a pair as well (not Keds because there weren’t any tiny ones).

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After paying at the counter, I knew that what we bought were things that we needed not wanted. I then whispered to E, ” We deserve this, reward natin to for surviving Bunny’s first year.” To which he replied with a high five.

This was when I realized that sometimes as parents, well not really sometimes but most of the time, we sacrifice too much for our little ones. We don’t even care if we have no new things or we wear old stuff just so that we can give what they want, not what they need. This I think is the guilt that most working moms and dads feel. You are away most of the time (10 to 12 hours give and take depending on the traffic) and you don’t get to spend as much time as you would want with that tiny bundle of joy. However, what I realized is that they don’t really need a closet overflowing with new clothes, or a crib filled with toys. What they need and yearn for is just time with you. It doesn’t need to be a lot but it has to be real quality time with them.

Going back to our reward for this year, we were able to buy new shoes for E, Bunny, and I and we were matchy matchy! I think this will be an annual thing something E and I can bond over. How about you? What was your reward when your little one turned one?

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My Take On Beef Kaldereta

Last Sunday, I felt this sudden urge to cook. I don’t really cook on a daily basis, usually when I’m just in the mood or when E requests for it. In a week I usually cook once to twice, mostly on weekends pa.

Before we went to Puregold for our bi-monthly (yes it is scheduled and has a fixed budget) grocery I checked the Del Monte Kitchenomics Site. I wanted to cook something yummy and tomato based for bunny. After 10 minutes I decided to cook Beef Kaldereta. The recipe I chose looked simple enough, but of course knowing myself I usually change it along the way. This is my way of personalizing recipes I get online, to make sure that it has a distinct and unique taste.

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After our trip to Puregold, I began prepping the ingredients. Unfortunately, I cut my thumb ( a bit) so E stepped in to slide and dice the ingredients. Here is my tweaked recipe of Del Monte Kitchenomics Beef Kaldereta:

Ingredients:

  • Half a kilo of Beef Cubes
  • 2 Pouches of Del Monte Filipino Style Tomato Sauce (1 200g and 1 smaller)
  • 1 Pouch of Del Monte Tomato Sauce
  • 1 can of Argentina Liver Spread (the small one)
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 3 -4 pcs. of potatoes
  • 1 medium onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1/4 block of Eden Cheese Quick Melt
  • 1 pc siling labuyo
  • 3 cups of water
  • salt
  • pepper
  • oil
  • 1 can of greenpeas

Cooking Procedure:

  1. Saute onion first, when it is translucent add garlic
  2. Add beef cubes and wait for it to brown
  3. Add liver spread (I used up the entire can for this recipe)
  4. Add 2 cups of water, and add on a cup or two along the way so that it won’t dry up (simmer until beef is tender)
  5. Add tomato sauce, salt and pepper
  6. Add potatoes (cubed) and siling labuyo (for a spicier kick add 2-3 pcs instead of 1) simmer for 10 minutes
  7. Add greenpeas and sliced bell pepper simmer for 10 minutes
  8. Add grated cheese and salt and pepper
  9. Serve

Beef Kaldereta

This recipe is good for 5 – 6 people, double it up to serve 14-15. Based on bunny’s reaction, this was a yummy take on Beef Kaldereta. Spent around P350 – 400 for this recipe.

A Change of Perspective

I was once a workaholic. Emphasis on “was,” still working on it but really as compared before I think I’m less of a workaholic. Proof?

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I used to go home around 10 or 11 PM everyday. EVERYDAY. It was so focused on completing every task on my to-do list, well obsessed will be a better term for that. I wanted to see each post that is up on our social pages receive high engagement scores. I wanted to learn as much as I can about social media, about digital.

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I wanted to attend each and every single trade party there is. I wanted to escape. I liked staying at home, but if there was an opportunity to do a live coverage for an event, attend a network event, or stay out with friends I will easily say yes. I will say yes to out of town event coverage, to late nights away from home, to staying at the office finish every to-do I can think off (while watching Adventure Time or Chowder). I will even say yes to bringing my laptop home to work (I will have a bit a resistance of course but after sometime I will be okay).

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When I check my payslip, I would usually have minimum of 15 hrs of overtime per cut-off. I’m a happy girl during payday because, hello, I have additional cash from my OT and reimbursement as well. Did this take a toll on my health, which is why I would always have a glass of Berocca (my baby brand) everyday. To me this was the norm of working in an agency.

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To me this was life and I loved it. I thrived in this environment without realizing that the reason I liked it was because it helped me escape from my other problems. It helped me cover that hole in my life that needed to be filled. It helped fill my empty nights with laughter and cheer. That all changed when I had bunny.

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I know that I am not the only mom who said or who will say this, but having a child gives more meaning to your life. It doesn’t mean that my life had no meaning before, but having her allowed me to have that change of perspective. Having her made me realize that I can still be good at work without having to go overtime everyday. Having her made me realize the importance of family and the importance of time management. She wasn’t just my baby, but she was the instrument God used to help me realize that my life should be just about work.

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Now I work 40 hrs per week, but I am always online, always on Viber, always on messenger. I would be lying if I said that I finally achieved that work life balance, because really I haven’t cracked this yet. What I realized is that I still can be a good employee without burning out. That to-dos will pile up but I will be able to manage it with the help of proper time management and my team.

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Now my nights are more chill, usually filled with music from bunny’s favorite nursery rhymes. My nights won’t be complete without changing my messy little bunny. My nights are filled with laughter that starts from bunny and resonates throughout our home. My nights are filled with hugs and kisses from bunny. I no longer feel the need to stay out late, I do sometimes to attend trade events (chosen trade events) and I still work sometimes but at home when she’s asleep. I no longer feel the need to drink up alcohol to fill the void I once felt. My life has changed by a silly little girl. She changed how I viewed my nights, my life, my world.

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11 Months and Counting

11 months. For 11 months I have survived breastfeeding my little bunny. I will be lying if I said that it’s a piece of cake, that I never thought of just stopping it and giving her formula, that I sometimes want to give my “milky mountains” a break. It is hard and sometimes frustrating, but I persevered. I know that you will probably ask me why, and the answer will just be: bunny.

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In my personal opinion, “milky” is the best for her, but I do respect moms who give their little ones formula (regardless of the reason I know in my heart and soul that moms do what they think is best for their little abgels). That is why I pushed myself to continue breastfeeding bunny amidst the many different hurdles we faced.

Like many mommies, working, studying, or stay at home, I experienced moments when my output significantly decreased. This was a big hurdle for me because bunny likes milky so much that she can finish 3 bags (4 to 5 oz each) when I am away. Everyday I have to bring home 3 bags that will equal to at least 12 oz of her precious milky. I even recall a moment wherein I had to go home 2 hours before my usual schedule because she had no milky left at home. I only had a 2 hr period before she will drink again so I asked my boss if I can go home. Thankfully he understood and he allowed me to go home early. I made it just in time for milky and she latched on super thirsty and hungry. Since I only had 2 bags with me I had to pump one milky mountain while she latched on to the other milky mountain. E just found this extremely bizarre and funny, but he whispered thanks after bunny unlatched.

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To counter the decrease in my supply, caused by stress or my oh so favorite monthly visit, I usually run to Jamba Juice and get oatmeal with banana and strawberries wild (yum yum). Tested and proven to help increase my supply! If I have any extra cash I order lactation brownies or cookies from Mommy Treats (her brownies are so divine I usually end up consuming 2 to 3 per day).

mommy treats

Now 11 months in, bunny isn’t showing any signs of weaning any time soon. Now I am counting down the days to her birthday and to finally reaching one of the big goals I set upon myself, exclusively breastfeeding her for a year! 30 days to go and I will finally reach the end of this goal. I won’t be stopping after we reach this 12 month ebf goal, next up is 15 months. I want to set realistic goals so I will set it up in 3 month intervals. Similar to how we set up goals in any digital campaigns we don’t want to over promise anything, we just want to meet realistic goals. If we do achieve more than what we have promised then that will be better.

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30 days to go

720 hours

43200 minutes

2.5M seconds

John Lewis Christmas Adverts

I recently watched the latest John Lewis Christmas advert, and it was full of #feels. Even E teared up a bit, but not really, when I made him watch the latest advert. Inspired by the advert and linked as well to the industry I work in I have here my favorite John Lewis Christmas Adverts. Of course I ranked the adverts as well, so let us start with my favorite:

I love this advert the most because I recalled how childhood was so free of care and full of imagination. The message was simple and who can ever resist Monty the adorable penguin? Right? Aside from that it also shared how love is, sometimes, all we need during the Holiday season. No need for any extravagant gift or big gestures, just the fact that somebody loves you is enough. This ad was created by their agency Adam & Eve. Take time to watch the bts footage and you’ll be surprised that Monty (the penguin in the advert) is not a real penguin.

My second favorite John Lewis Christmas advert was the debut Christmas advert of Adam & Eve. Again banking on children and the fact that as adults we forget how Christmas should be celebrated. This was depicted by having kids open the gifts meant for adults. You will see their innocence and their happiness in opening presents. This is true, and something I can totally relate to (because I have been saying over and over again the past couple of years that Christmas i just for kids). The execution was simple but well thought of, definitely will make you realize how much you can miss out on if you forget how Christmas is truly the most wonderful time of the year.

Their 2011 ad is third on my list. Because of how it switched up the expectation. Again perhaps thinking of how people assume that Christmas is for kids. This time around they leveled up the production value of their advert as compared to previous years. This also set the standard for the next adverts that they will produce for the Holiday season. This also had a lot of #feels for me because I’m a first time mom. I hope that someday I will also get a silly surprise from my bunny girl.

Their latest Christmas advert is fourth on my list. This is the one that had so much #feels. The way they depicted how the elderly feel during the Holiday season was creative but again simple. The man on the moon execution clearly sums up how detached they feel during the holiday season because they are alone or they just don’t feel like celebrating a holiday deemed more for kids than for adults.

Last on my list is their 2013 advert. Aside from the amazing song choice, it was nice how they executed the ad in full animation. Something both children and adult can really enjoy watching.

The Spa: Mommy Me Time

Work + Mom Duties + Finishing my online course + Online Shop +Bunny’s Costume + Trick or Treat madness = One tired momma.

I’m sure all moms can relate to this.

I wake up at 5.30 AM fix the room if I can. I get up and change bunny’s nappy and fix her breakfast. I take my only cup of coffee for the day ( I still breastfeed so I limit coffee to once a day only) while I feed her. I play with her a bit, and then ask her granddad to look after her as I take a bath. I get out and change while playing/looking after her. My aunt arrives and I leave home for work. I take a mini-bus to the terminal and ride the 1 to 1.5hr shuttle to work.

I get to work, I check my emails, list down to dos, tackle as much as I can while ensuring that I pump thrice while at work. I stand up rarely, only during pump time, when I have to pee, and when I need to get water. I don’t have lunch out, when I do it’s usually just once a week. I do this because I allot lunch time to taking an online class via Coursera or to attend to inquiries from mommies for my online shop. I leave at 5 PM, ride the shuttle and then a mini bus.

I get home, to a messy room but to the two best people in the world. My lovely bunny and my ever so dependable E. I ask them to vacate the premises as I fix the room. We catch up, E and I fix bunny’s dinner, I clean her up. shower, attend to online shop, catch up with friends and then sleep.

At a glance that is a day in my life right now – with a minor tweak for the past two days wherein I remove the online shop bit and replace it with hand sew bunny’s costume until 3 AM. Am I tired? Hell yes. Am I happy? Never been this happy EVER! But of course I need to have my “me time” to unwind and just give my body the rest it deserves. So when we were allowed to leave early I decided to finally use my P2500 worth of The Spa GC. One branch is just 2 blocks away from the office, so I immediately booked a slot. Super lucky to get one since they are always fully booked.

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I decided to try the refreshing start package, which entailed a head and shoulder massage, peppermint scrub, and combination massage for my body. This meant 3 hours of relaxation for me! I’m a newbie at the spa, so I wasn’t really sure what to expect. Just that their infamous ginger tea is super delish (true true).

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The whole package was awesome, the best part for me was the head and shoulder massage and the body massage. The foot scrub/massage was just so-so. The body massage really helped remove the back pain that I had, most probably due to carrying bunny a lot of times. My entire time I was there though I was still thinking of bunny and E. I know it was supposed to be mommy time, but of course I missed them both so much!

The Spa is on a pricier side of spa services, that I will probably opt for availing similar services in one of the salons near home. But the whole experience helped me unwind and really just allow my body to rest from all the stress it receives on a daily basis. Remember, even if you are a mom you should never ever let go of yourself. No matter how busy you are you have to have that time away from your responsibilities to just help you be you again. To help you tune in to your old self.