Friday, December 28, 2012

Two-time heavyweight champion of the world

My pregnancy tracker says I am 30 weeks and 5 days pregnant today. I'd like to think that I'm having an easier time with this pregnancy. But there's also the effect of knowing what to expect. For example, I know my feet are going to swell eventually. I also know that I will be having trouble sleeping and will have to go to the toilet a lot. In other words, my expectations of being comfortable for the next 9 months have gotten quite low from experience. So technically, even if I'm uncomfortable already, I still feel like I'm having a blast. I'm able to trick myself like that.

Nine months of discomfort -> a lifetime of happiness
If there's anything that I'm sure of, it's that I've gained A LOT of weight. The last time we checked, I've gotten to (drumroll please) 143 lbs!

There's Baby No.2!
This was my weight when I gave birth to Malik 3 years ago. I was able to trim down to my pre-pregnancy weight after a couple of months, plus or minus 4 lbs. (more plus than minus, honestly), but I don't know if I can recover from this one. I've just been eating everything in sight. And the holidays aren't helping! Hay. 

Thursday, December 27, 2012

A lot to love

We just got ourselves a new camera. I like how things are turning out so far. Our pictures are better now (This doesn't necessarily mean that I'll get to post more often. I just hope so. We'll see.)

Malik in my office collecting gifts.
Here are some more photos of Malik at our annual Kids' Christmas Parteeh.

I don't think Malik knows what money does yet. 
Everytime he receives them, he runs to me to give me the "paper."
This set-up works great for us. To me, at least. Heehee 


Our son is such a goofball. How can you not love this kid?


Thursday, December 6, 2012

This is you. This is me.

Now that I've decided to start a new blog , I should get around to finishing this post. I've uploaded some more pictures after the jump. Click to see Gladi some years and many pounds ago. 


The birth of Malik the Rockstar

On our way to White Island in Camiguin

My nephew Gabby's 1st birthday. He looks a lot like Malik doesn't he?

Side trip to Siquijor from a hearing in Dumaguete

Vacationing in Boracay courtesy of my former employers

Side trip to Singapore from Pao's conference in Malaysia

When Manila Ocean Park first opened (not much to see)

Best and most tiring days of my life with Malik the baby

Our wedding day

Malik as Simba. Hee.

Me carrying Malik...

...who looked like this unborn... 

...and this a year after. Awww.

White water rafting in Cagayan De Oro (while pregnant with Malik! We didn't know!)

Our baby shower

A (sort of) honeymoon in Bohol and Cebu

Malik goes to the mall for the first time

In Phnom Penh, Cambodia where my bag almost got swiped

Saling ket in Kuala Lumpur

In Siem Reap, Cambodia before the place became all tourist-y
I should have some more pictures here, like of the time we visited Pao's boss in Bukidnon or my first time in Bangkok. I'll come across them soon enough. Meantime, gotta go!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The Kindle Paperwhite: A Review (Sort of)

I've had a series a technological glitches last week. First, I ran out of storage space at my old blog. Then my iPod refused to start, for which we had to take it back to the dealer's. And then my Kindle died. This one left me most devastated.


You see, I was in the middle of reading a book. So the natural thing to do was to look for a replacement. I thought of having one shipped from Amazon, but the model (Do people still use this word? Hee) that I liked will not be available until December 21st. I did not have the patience.


Turns out most e-readers are available locally from this store. I just had to SMS them, set a meet-up date and pay upon delivery. Of course I had to pay more than what I would have paid had I gotten my Kindle Paperwhite directly from Amazon, but that's just the price that I had to pay for literaly having very low EQ.


Anyway, this post is really all about the Kindle Paperwhite. I first thought of getting just the basic $69 Kindle because I was used to reading without a backlight in my old Kindle keyboard anyway. I'm glad I changed my mind because the backlight in the Kindle Paperwhite is just so damn awesome.


The downsides are that: 1) The Paperwhite is small and hence more difficult to hold. I liked the size of my old Kindle better; 2) I have to move my fingers when turning pages in the Paperwhite. I liked the page turn buttons at the side of my old Kindle better; 3) The Paperwhite is heavy. I wouldn't recommend getting a leather case for it actually. I just use a pencil organizer when it's in my bag so I don't scratch it -


- 4) The battery life on the Paperwhite isn't built for stamina. My old Kindle lasted two months without recharging. The Paperwhite lasts only around a month; and 5) the Paperwhite only comes with a USB charger, which means I'd have to find a PC or laptop before I can charge it. My old Kindle came with a power adapter and I got to plug it anywhere.

So to summarize, while older versions of the Kindle trump the Paperwhite in many respects, these do not matter to me as much as the Paperwhite's awesome backlight feature. I used to have to stop reading when it was Malik's time to sleep. Now I can go about my business even when all lights in the room are turned off. This one amazing convenience makes the Kindle Paperwhite a good buy, well, despite all other considerations.


- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Parol

This year, we bought our very first Christmas lantern ("parol" in Filipino). We got it from the strip of stores along Gilmore Ave. Malik came with us, because the strip is not to long as to be overwhelming even for a child.


I've gained some weight, courtesy of Baby No. 2. Can you spy him here?



After walking back and forth for about an hour, we took home this one -


That's how its looks like unlighted, at least before Kuya Greg put it up outside our bedroom window.


We got this medium sized capiz lantern for P1,700. The next I day, I had to take a day trip to Pampanga (where most lanterns are made in the Philippines) and found out that they sold the same lantern for the same price. We didn't even have to travel 2 hours and spend on gas. Yey, Ironman.


- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Friday, November 30, 2012

Pre-school Hunting

Malik will be 3 years and some months in June next year. The time is ripe for him to start school. So last week, Pao and I took a day off from work to look at pre-schools for pogiboy. We took him along. His opinion counts, you know.


My first consideration is whether the school's teaching philosophy is consistent with what I hope Malik would take away from going to school for the first time. I just want him to develop a love for learning. After pre-school, there will be plenty of time to learn about calculus and financial markets. In the meantime, Malik just needs to be curious and have fun with kids his age. That said, our next considerations are (in no particular order) the school's facilities, the quality of their teachers, their location and of course, tuition.

It's good that most pre-schools in Metro Manila have Internet presence. That's really convenient for households like us where both parents work full-time. We need to get our hands on a lot of information and quick. Some don't respond to parent inquiries as quickly as the others though, which is sad but helpful in a way. Those pre-schools that do not bother to reply to our emails get stricken off the shortlist. Yey.

However, very few of these pre-schools post their tuition in their websites. We had to personally inquire at the schools to get the rates, which I am posting here to hopefully help other parents in their decision-making. By the way, as you may already know, fees vary per level. The fees posted here are for kids around Malik's age (3.6 - 4.5 years old). Some schools call that Nursery, others Kinder, still others some odd name like "Master Explorer".


Cambridge Child Development Centre, Mariposa QC - Annual tuition (good for 10 months) P89,452 inclusive of course materials, daily snacks, insurance, 1 centre uniform and 1 movement uniform, and 1 Cambridge bag

Kinder Explorers, M.Paterno, San Juan - Annual tuition P82, 500 exclusive of food, transportation, expenses related to field trips, Kinder Explorers shirt and program costumes

The Raya School, Sct. Fernandez, QC - P65,000

Gymboree Magnolia, Aurora Blvd., QC - Tuition per sem (good for approx. 5 months) P40,000 inclusive of Gymboree pre-school shirt and bag, 1 walking trip, materials used in class and unlimited gym play at any Gymboree Philippines branch

I don't know about you, pero ako namamahalan. :( My parents did not even have to pay close to these figures in tuition to get me through college AND law school. But Pao and I have more or less decided where to enroll Malik of these four. The school came highly recommended by our close friends from college, one of whom is herself a pre-school teacher.

- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Migration

Hey, I ran out of space for pictures in this blog. Instead of coughing up $2.49/month, I decided to just create another account. And so I won't be posting here anymore. If you like, you can head on over to my new blog. I just added the number "2" at the end of this blog's URL. Brilliant. See you there!

P.S. There isn't exactly anything there yet. Still working on posts and layout and all these other blogger-y nuisances. But I'll get to it. Don't cha worry.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Multiply to Blogger

Spent a lot of time last week downloading old media from Multiply and exporting Multiply posts to this blog. If you had/have a Multiply account and would like to keep your files, I suggest you start working on that now. Multiply's letting go of their social networking and content sharing features, and will just be focusing on their e-commerce business beginning December 1. Yes, the decision is crappy but we all have to deal with it don't we?

The exporting part was pretty easy. All I had to do was to download an .xml file and upload it to this blog. So as you can see in my side bar, posts from as long ago as 2007 are in this blog now. I wish they had that feature when I decided to transfer my pregnancy posts here. A year ago, I had to manually cut, paste and post blogs from Multiply to Blogger. Ugh.

Downloading media was the troublesome part. Multiply wants us to believe that  it'll be as easy as installing a downloading tool depending on your browser and then waiting for all the files to download. But for some reason,  my downloading tool missed some pictures (I used Download Master for Google Chrome) so I had to right click-save as all my pictures one by one. Ugh.

Anyway, I'm done with this errand. All my pictures are safe in this laptop now (I think). I'm sharing some of them here. Read after the jump if you care to see. :)


Friday, November 23, 2012

High and mighty

Two years later, the bed's back in our room. I've been asking Pao to put the bed back since we grew 5-months pregnant - at which point my belly's gotten too big for me to have to rise up from the floor everyday. Pao hasn't been able to get to it because of work. Thankfully, my in-laws dropped by one weekday last week and decided to do it themselves. Yey.

I attempted to fix the bed before taking the photo so our room will look all  "Real  Living"
but Malik was quick to dismantle what I "styled." Oh well. 

This arrangement's been working out great for us so far. Malik's old enough to not fall off. And even though our bed's a modest queen-sized one, all three of us have been sleeping comfortably at night.

I'm still not sure how this will work out when the baby gets here. Malik or Pao or some other person other than the woman who had just given birth (me!heehee) would have to move out of the bed and/or the room. We'll see.

- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Where to get your travel insurance policy

I used to blog about fashion, showbusiness, politics, current events and things that I thought might interest other people in the hopes of eventually making me famous. But as my two readers may have noticed by now, I've recently been writing only about our daily lives. I've decided I'm keeping this blog to make memories and document them. Whether they interest other people is secondary now. I just want to have notes ready for when Malik asks when he first rode an air plane or spent a night in a hotel.

Sometimes though, I come across things that I find helfpul. My recent experience with a travel insurance company is one such thing.



Thursday, November 15, 2012

Dash

Malik didn't want to watch The Incredibles last night. He was asking for the usuals - Spiderman, Transformers, Ironman and all their respective sequels. But Pao said The Incredibles had super powers too. An hour and a half later, look at who dropped by -


Malik was still at it when we woke up this morning.


The costume is really just a hand-me-down from my sister's youngest son Gab, which is just as well because this fascination will change in a bit. I'll give Dash two weeks tops.


- posted via BlogPress for iPad

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree

We finally put up our Christmas tree over the weekend. This used to be a really easy exercise, until a toddler entered the picture. Malik likes to imitate what we do now. So when we're on top of the sofa, trying to put the star on the Christmas tree, Malik will also be there "helping."


We kept Malik occupied with gold beads, which he used to pretend he was Ironman. (How, I do not know.) The tree is still a work in progress. I was contented with how it looked the first time we put it up, but  then I began seeing ridiculously decorated trees in the mall. I've since bought additional ornaments and have been progressively placing them on the tree every day after work. Here's our not-quite-finished project.

Tada.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Siena, Italy

Going to Siena was the highlight of my trip to Italy. We barely spent a day in the city but we fell in love with it the moment we stepped foot on its streets. Siena sits on top of a hill so it's windier and colder there than it was in Florence or Rome. There were fewer tourists too. The streets are old and narrow, and they wind up and down the hill like I imagined Tuscany to be. 

When the time comes for us to go back to Italy, I'd spend most of our vacation in Siena. I want to live there, even. The city's just more laid back than Florence and is certainly more serene than Rome. This is the place where celebrities go for their vacations. They wear huge sun glasses and sit in a corner coffee shop reading a magazine, and no one would be the wiser.

You'd think we'd choose a photo of the Cathedral or some historical landmark 
to remind us of our trip to Siena. I chose this instead. 
I love Siena's old streets and the fact that you can hang laundry off 
your window and the view still looks post card perfect. 
 (More pictures after the jump)

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Senior

Our first born, Pipo, turned 9 years old on Friday. That's 63 years in human speak. He's officially a senior citizen.


We got caught up in a Halloween frenzy (plus colds, cough, fever and dengue in the house) that we forgot all about his birthday until the weekend came along. We bought him cake as soon as we remembered.

Sorry, Pao. This was the only photo with Malik and Pipo looking in the (almost) right direction.
It will have to do.

Of course Pipo had none of the cake because chocolate is bad for dogs and this cake has liquor. Toink.


But I prayed that night that Pipo will be with us longer so he can meet and play with Baby No. 2. Happy birthday, love.

Pipo: "Huh? What did I do?"

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