Community Involvement: Brigada Eskwela 2020.

Brigada Eskwela 2020.

Fun fact: I wanted to become a teacher when I was a kid. I grew up in an academically inclined family, my maternal grandparents were teachers in Masbate, my paternal grandmother was a college librarian, and P.E. teacher, my grandfather worked in the University of the Philippines Cebu College, and my dad was an aeronautical instructor and engineer. I remember receiving lesson planners when I was about 7. Ahahaha! 😂

I will always be thankful for my parents who worked very hard to give me and my sister the opportunity to study in schools that has made all the difference in our lives because of the quality of education, the classmates we have who have turned into friends who we also now consider family, and he overall experience that has shaped us into lean, mean, hustling machines. 😉

2014 Brigada Eskwela.

Today, I hope to pay it forward by grabbing the opportunity to help other children have a fantastic educational experience.

2016 Brigada Eskwela with Ayala Business Club.

I came across a Facebook post of a friend asking for help for public school elementary teachers requesting for donations for bondpapers to be used for printing student modules and decided to ask for help from my batchmates and officemates. I thought, if we reach 10 reams of bondpaper, that would be great! Less than two hours later, my friends came through and we were ate 30 reams! This morning I woke up to donations of more than 70 reams of bondpaper! Bless your kind hearts. 🥰 Amazing how collective effort can make a bigger difference!

Brigada Eskwela: School Painting at Taptap Elementary School.

The focus of of the first virtual Brigada Eskwela is the continued children’s education despite the pandemic we are experiencing. Since many students don’t have gadgets and don’t have access to internet connection, the schools will provide them printed Modules.

One module per student and per subject will be distributed each week and some modules contain 10 to 20 pages each.

Sample module.

One ream of short bondpaper (containing around 500 sheets) costs around 177 Philippine Pesos or around three (3) U.S. dollars.

We all know the government and the schools have budget allocations for these, but wouldn’t we rather actively participate than just sit back and watch? 😉 I’ve always been a believer that a little help goes a long way. I hope you share my sentiments of giving these in good faith and momentarily setting aside our pandemic-induced politicizing. Hahaha. Let’s pay it forward! 🙂

Your donations will be distributed to four (4) teachers from different schools in Cebu. Rest assured, your donations will be properly documented.

If you’re interested to become a Brigada Hero, you can send your donations through:

Bank                                      :               BPI (Savings)

Account Name                  :               Lizette Olitres

Account Number             :               2949206729

#BrigadaEskwela2020
#BondpaperMoParaSaModyulko

STC Batch 2001 Community Involvement. Donations at Olango island.

Self-care Stories: My kids’ favourite essential oils: Lemon and Eucalyptus.

Aromatherapy has become part of my family’s daily routine. The two essential oil must-haves in our home, and easily the kids favourites, are Lemon and Eucalyptus.

Essential oils must haves: Lemon and Eucalyptus.

Eucalyptus essential oil when diffused helps relieve respiratory ailments. When one of us feels the onset of stuffy and runny nose, eucalyptus is our go to oil to diffuser. Its properties are also know to help in clearing respiratory tract and stimulation bodily circulation. Its soothing minty aroma helps alleviate stress, irritability and tension at the end of a long day.

Eucalyptus for end-of-day happiness in a bottle!

Lemon is one of the best selling and most commonly used essential oils simply because of its happy aroma. This is my  favourite oil to diffuse in the morning to jumpstart a workday. I use it to help fight off of sleepiness, tiredness, anxiety and depression. There are studies that show that lemon helps with mood and stress regulation. Other uses of lemon essential oils are for skin care (they say it helps with acne!), relieves pain and helps with symptoms of colds.

Lemon to kick start a busy day!

I haven’t really tried ingesting essential oils and have only routinely used these with a diffuser. We likey the smell of diffused oils when you go inside a room. 🤗 YL has a line called Vitality that you might want to check out if you want your all-natural journey to go up a notch.😉

For more product info, head on over to www.youngliving.com

Beach please.

This weekend marks 18 weeks of baby number two being hell bent on experiencing the wide spectrum of pregnancy symptoms known and unknown to mankind. From projectile vomiting, to debilitating cramps and dizzying migraines, lousy is an understatement in trying to describe the past 4 ½ months of this pregnancy.

This weekend also marks my lovely mothers 53rd birthday and I’ve been looking forward to this getaway for weeks. I needed to feel the sand between my toes and the sun on my skin and let the sea float the fugly preggy feelings away. How I look like in a bathing suit is an entirely different story for an entirely different blog entry.


Back to the beach. The best thing about living in the wonderful tropical island of Cebu, a close second to crispy, tasty, crunchy Cebuano lechon, is that you are only 30 minutes away from world renowned beaches. For dear mommy’s birthday weekend, we are staying at Movenpick Resort, located in Punta Engano, Mactan, Cebu City.


I have been waiting with bated breath to feel the lovely white sand beneath my feet and to taste salty water so you can just imagine the orgasmic sense of fulfilment when we got to the beach. The sun, sea and sand does waters for the tired and weary city soul.


So, as I sit here, staring out into the beautiful blue sea framed by a blazing orange sunset, I think about all the despicable choices I have made and all the crappy things I am stuck with because of the choices I made. But despite the significant amount of stress, I know my gratitude should be bigger than my regrets and my fears.


Thank you Mama Mary for my mom, the best kind of mother any kid could ever ask for. I pray for her good health, happiness and success and may you hear the deepest prayers of her heart.


Thank you Mama Mary for the gift of family time, for fulfilling weekends, for something to look forward to, for new adventures and for the gift of new life. All praises to you.


Now on the next adventure.

 

 

 

 

The Beautiful Miracle That Is Pregnancy.

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The beautiful miracle that is pregnancy. This tiny miracle mutant in your body begins to dictate every single aspect of your life from the way you sleep, to the way you eat, how you function at work, why you cry when you watch Revenge Body with Khloe Kardashian. Mothers do not own their bodies for nine whole months. For you to willingly accept a tenant in your own body who manipulates and controls every aspect of your being for a long period of time, that, that my dear friends, is True Love.

Did you know that your body can do a multitude of tasks at any given second? Yessss. Men have no idea about the maximum capacity of bodily functions because they never get pregnant. Yessss. You have not truly lived until you become a mother. Say for example, the mundane task of sneezing. Did you know that you can sneeze AND burp at the same time? Ha. Bet you didn’t know that. Bet you also didn’t know that brushing your teeth, regurgitation and peeing could happen at the same exact time too. Ha. You know nothing and your life experiences pale in comparison to the beautiful miracle that is pregnancy.

It’s awesome being pregnant. I also didn’t know you can produce so much saliva you start to think you can hydrate yourself without drinking any liquid. Bet you also didn’t know the super power of your olfactory nerves. You can actually smell what your neighbor three doors down is cooking for dinner, or what exact liquor your husband drank 18 hours ago. Ha. Bet you didn’t know that. Also, pregnancy is a contradiction of sorts, you don’t like the smell of cooking oil but you want stuff yourself senseless with fried spam, fried hotdog, fried pork, fried chicken. You become completely bipolar and you know it but you can’t really do anything about it. The things we find out during the beautiful miracle that is pregnancy.

It’s great being pregnant. Once the morning sickness goes away, the indigestion and the constipation takes over. Have you tried belching and barfing in supremely high decibels it would put the exorcism sound effects of Linda Blair and Emily Rose to shame? I didn’t know my vocal chords could do that. Seriously. The things we discover during the beautiful miracle that is pregnancy.

It’s lovely being pregnant. I go to work and when I come home at night, and ask the sperm donor husband if he bought me fuji apples and Chowking chicharap and he says, “I’ve had a long day. I forgot about it, I’m sorry. I’m tired.” And my head snaps and faster than you can say sperminator, the pregnant lady can start a verbal and physical assault of nuclear proportions, husband will want to go back to his mother’s womb and come out as a girl instead. Tip to Fathers: You are not growing an arm or a foot or building someone’s brain and liver, therefore, never, ever say you are busy, all the more, never ever say you are tired. And never ever forget the fuji apples and Chowking chicharap. Just breathe. And follow instructions. It’s only for nine months. This beautiful miracle that is pregnancy.

I heard somewhere that the second pregnancy is easier than the first. Ha. My first pregnancy was easy breezy compared to this! I ate like a vacuum and drank like a pirate. Zero physical drama.

My husband and I have fervently prayed, and fervently tried, haha, to give my son a brother or a sister for four years. After several unsuccessful attempts, false positives and mini heartbreaks, we prayed that if we were meant to have a bigger family, we will leave it all up to God. And by some divine intervention, here we are, despite and inspite of the high velocity barfing, zero control over bodily functions and mental and emotional instability, we are “enjoying” and above all, just GRATEFUL for the beautiful miracle that is this pregnancy.

 

 

Post Baby Blues.

Five years ago, I sat in the hospital nursery, staring at my beautiful newborn son. It was less than 24 hours since I gave birth. In the past 10 months, I had a new husband, new job, new family, and now I had a brand new baby too. And I remember feeling ecstatic but exhausted; feeling like laughing and crying at the same time; feeling excited about motherhood but also feeling melancholic because I had to let go of many parts of the old, pre-mama me. I felt proud of myself, for pushing out a 7.2lb human out of my very own vagina but at the same time, questioning if I had the actual balls to raise a child. The list goes on.

miggy 1

I remember asking the nurse to teach me how to hold him. And as she placed my son in my arms, I remember feeling overwhelmed, my heart pumping like crazy as I tried to hold back tears. I had pictured this moment in my head a million times, but here I was, right smack in the middle of it, and the only thought running through my head was – F*ck. I’m not good enough for this.

I asked the nurse to teach me how to help my baby latch on for breastfeeding. And after a few tries, I started feeling like a huge failure. I shifted my chair and faced the wall, afraid that the nurses, that the other parents in the room have judged me. And I sat silently crying and telling my son to please please please just drink my goddamn milk, and as if he understood my whispered pleas, he started feeding and after a couple of minutes, stopped, and gave me this big, beautiful smile. And amidst a flood of tears and noisy sniffling, I snorted out a laugh.

miggy 2

And I knew then, this baby, this tiny, helpless, noisy, semi-belligerent human being, had unfathomable power over me. And in that highly emotional, confused state, I was certain of one thing: I loved this baby more than anything or anyone else in the world.

On the day, the nurses showed me how to bathe my baby, I cowered behind my husband. The feeling of being incapable to be given such a monumental task of taking care of another human being  was overwhelmingly real. My hands were sweaty, trembling and I was an emotional and mental mess that when they asked me to comb his hair, I cried. I f*ck*ng cried. I knew everyone thought those were tears of joy, but really, tears for fears would have been a far more accurate description.

When we got out of the hospital, I was a happy spectator rather than a doting participant. I was tremendously relieved when my mother or my sister or my husband or anyone else for that matter would take my son.

Before my Mama Hat, I wore my Events and Marketing Hat with far more courage and bravado. Rubbed shoulders with famous personalities and even met the president of the country without breaking a sweat and batting an eyelash. Yet, there I was, a quivering mess of disoriented mama jelly, scared sh*tless of my very own tiny human.

Don’t get me wrong. Again, I knew I loved my son. I just wasn’t so sure about myself. Would I ever be the perfect mother I was in my imaginations? Would I be enough?

Post partum depression is real. Nobody just talks about it because everybody just expects you to wear your Mama hat as if it was as easy as that, wearing a hat. Or putting on a tshirt. Motherhood, or parenthood, is like any other adventure: preparation is the key to success.

Today, I sit in my messy kitchen, watching my beautiful, gregarious, smart-mouth five year old wreak havoc in the living room. And if only I could turn back time, I will give myself a hug and tell my weepy new mama self, “It’s going to be okay”.

Miggy1

To all the new Mama’s out there, stay-at-home or working, millenials or not-so-millenials, you are not alone. And yes, it’s going to be okay. You are going to be okay and your adorable screaming baby will turn out just fine. 😉

 

Of Mice and Men and Babies and Boobs.

There are days when i forget I am a parent. And in these unfortunate times when i get temporary lapses of judgement, i unconsciously pass on widgets of knowledge to my precocious son.

At 13 months, we taught him the different human body parts. Two months later, his favorite (female) body part to point at are “boobs”, which i unwittingly explained to him one day not so long ago when he saw me dressing up for work. The next day, he in public, he triumphantly declares BOOBS! and points to all human concerned, sales ladies, grandmothers, neighborhood girlies and not to mention my female co-workers and my lady boss.

And he come across a girl friend of mine:

GF: Hi Miggy! I’m (let’s call her Anna). (Ppoints her finger to her chest to indicate she is indeed Anna)

Miggy: (stares at her chest) (shakes head left to right) says, No Boobs.

well, kids say the darndest things.

So here I am, writing this blog. Torn between berating myself for teaching him part 1 of the dreaded sex talk at such a young age and being mighty proud that his brain absorbs info like a brand new sponge. 

The wisdom you impart cannot be undone. So help me God.