5 Steps in Cleaning the house thoroughly

I am scheduled to clean the house today.. Dust and furs of our cats are already visible. Extensive cleaning is a must! Haha.. I usually clean the house for 3 hours. Compared to others, our house is not that big. We have 4 bedrooms, 2 living rooms, 3 toilets and 1 kitchen.. However, I really make sure that I am really cleaning it thoroughly.

Sharing with you my cleaning routine, what are the materials that I am using and how it makes me satisfied…

  1. I usually do my cleaning per room. Firstly, I wipe all the cabinets, shelves, tables, etc.. with a micro fibre clothe. I usually wash this clothe with detergent first then re-wash again after every room..

2. Then I will vacuum the floor. I make sure that all the corners and underneath places are cleaned by the vacuum.

3. After that, I mop the floor spraying multi-purpose liquid cleaner. I spray that first on the floor, then mop it.

4. After mopping, I usually use a humidifier in the room. I am doing this as my kids are allergic and I believe this could help them..

5. For my youngest daughter’s room, I usually clean the toys and the floor mat with alcohol also using the micro fibre clothe.

I do this routine every other 3 days.. for other days, I usually use this for teaching my daughters, cleaning the garden, washing clothes, buying groceries.. etc. I think this more productive than speed cleaning.

Sweet and Sour

The sun was shining brightly this morning.. I was so excited to see my plants especially the roses. I had a glimpse of the flowers yesterday through the window while it was raining.

I got four rose plants.. This is one of them.

Look how the flowers bloomed because of the rain. I feel so grateful.

I scheduled myself to clean the whole house.. vacuum, mop, thorough cleaning. However, heavy rain fell and I felt a little lazy and I would want to enjoy the coldness of the afternoon. I decided to lie down and watch a movie.

A blogger and facebook influencer mentioned a South Korean movie called Sweet & Sour, she mentioned that it is a good movie, a lot of lessons to learn and the ending has a nice twist. I was intrigued by her post and commented that I will definitely watch it.. She also mentioned that it is about long distance relationship, something that I can relate to.

The top 5 movies in the Philippines in Netflix (as of the moment)

The movie isn’t really about long distance relationship.. I wouldn’t go into details because I don’t want to spoil anything. It’s a good movie actually, there are a lot take away on handling relationships.

If you watched the movie, I think you would agree with me that even if you are apart from your partner, communication is always the key to stay together.. Time and effort should always be the priority. Distance is a factor but it is not always the case. I know some people who are having marital problems (infidelity) even if they are living together, they are not apart, but the other half still looked for somebody else.

Miscommunication is also a factor of major conflicts. If no one knows how to listen, if the other keeps on nagging, the other holds the thoughts, both are not completely honest, it could be a relationship disaster.

Pity are the people who give up on their marriage because of miscommunication.. Miscommunication that led to disintegration of feelings.

If you want a lasting relationship with your partner, I recommend that you watch this movie..

Still raining here in the Philippines..


Active Hats of a Stay at home mom

What are the active hats I have now? Stay at home moms do not just take care of their kids, they have a lot of hats to wear. Amongst the many, they have active hats that they usually wear during the day. I am a wife, a mom, home maker and a child.. Each hat has its own responsibility.

I always like to be on the move.. Maybe because I am used to it. As much as possible I wanted to be productive, which I think most of the moms do. There are still lots of hats that I need to wear sometimes but depending on when I need it… A sister, a friend, a relative.. etc..

Of course I need also to prioritize things and have some time for myself..

Yesterday afternoon, I was quite busy being with my mom for her vaccination. I was so happy to know that our government is really doing their best for the elders to be vaccinated. It was quite a long process because she needed to be checked, we consulted a doctor, then went to the vaccination center. She was there for almost an hour as there were talks and orientations.

My father’s vaccination is already done.. His second dose was done today.

My mom’s vaccination card.. This is her first dose.

I also signed up on the form online to be vaccinated.. just waiting for the schedule.

My eldest daughter also has some adjustments in terms of the changes on her body as she is now in puberty stage.. I am glad that I am here with my eldest to guide her on the proper way to handle these changes.

As I cut my hair short, my eldest would also want to have the same. She saw how convenient it is to have short hair.. So, we went to a salon for her new hair cut.

I pity the kids nowadays because they cannot really go out and play outside.. This is the reason why I also want to have some quality time with my kids. Yesterday, my kids and I watched a movie in Netflix, the Penguins of Madagascar. They always enjoy our time together, sitting down watching movies while eating chips.

My youngest daughter needs to have something to do always, she is really not fond of using the ipad. She just wants to listen to it while she is playing. Since I made her room cozy for her to play, she always stay in her room.. to make her feel happy, I provided her some foods to eat.

In this way, I could do a lot of chores at home as she is very comfortable playing in her room. She made herself occupied and while I was scrolling the pictures on the ipad, I saw some adventures she was doing.

She was trying to have a shot of herself flying.. Haha.. I think she used a timer when she did this shot. There are lots actually and some are really successful.

Whatever hats we wear at home or outside our house.. These are calling and privilege that God gave us. As long as we are doing our best to for this role, it is enough. Sometimes, it will frustrating to meet expectations however, God knows what you did.

5 Reasons Why I am Allowing My kids to be messy

Admit or not, some of us hate mess. I for one is not functioning well if I can see messy stuffs especially when I was still working. However, I am a firm believer that for kids this is different. My husband and I would like our kids to enjoy their childhood and so we bought them toys that they loved. We usually buy stuffs for our kids as gifts on their birthdays and on Christmas. We would want them to remember those toys as the gifts that we gave during those special occasions.

One way to enjoy their toys and activities at home is by allowing them to be messy. Sharing with you the top reasons why I do allow them to be messy.

  1. Motor skills development – I know someone who is not buying playdohs for their kids because of the untidiness that it could make. It’s really true and annoying to see clays on the floor, on the tables, couch, on their toys… everywhere.. However, this is a way of improving my daughter’s motor skills. It says that motor skills are the improvement of the muscles of the hands (fingers). If this will be developed, kids will not have difficulty doing tasks in school or at home.

So I just let my daughter use the playdoh.. I also enjoy playing with it. haha..

Smiley faces made out of playdoh

2. Exploring Creativity – My kids love to paint and painting could really create a lot of mess. However, I believe that this mess is a way for them to explore creativity. My eldest really loves drawing and painting. All the scratch papers that I had were used for her practicing..

One of my eldest daughter’s paintings

Since my eldest loves to paint, her sister also follows her..

3. Enjoyment at home – We don’t usually remember the things that we do when we were kids, however, the enjoyable moments are usually the ones that we recalled. I would like my kids to enjoy their childhood. There are restrictions but in terms of enjoyment on their playtime, I am really into it.

For the past months the play area of my youngest daughter is in our family room. We still don’t have a big couch there reason why I just put her toys there. It was really painful in the eyes at night seeing the mess she created. Good thing about my daughter, she is mindful of the mess and she would not go to sleep until she tidy things up.

And so, I decided to move her toys in her room (which is empty).. she is still sleeping with me.. She loved it when she saw her toys there. It was also a relieved for me, whenever it is messy, I will just close the door and voila!!! I cannot see the mess anymore.. Haha..

This is the vacant room..
This is the room now after I moved her toys.

4. Limiting screen time – This is one of the struggles of most of the moms nowadays.. How to limit the screen time of their kids… I still have to remind my daughters that they are already using their phones/ipad for a long time. By allowing them to just do what they want at home (without the phone), they can limit the time they spend on the screen.

Photo by Marta Wave on Pexels.com

5. Makes kids responsible – I think one of the reasons why my daughters tidy up their mess is because they can see how beautiful it is to see a well ordered place. When they are already finished on their activities or playing, I usually ask them to clean up. I think they are also aware of the amount of work I do at home reason why they are becoming responsible on their stuffs. This is one way also of disciplining my kids.. the only person that could tidy her mess, is herself. Though, at times I also help them because they would really could not make it tidier but most of the times, they are the ones who clean things up.

10 tips on making long distance relationship work

This is not the first time that my husband and I are away from each other. When we were still in Singapore, due to some restrictions on the work permits there, my husband needed to work in Malaysia. So he worked there for 2 years. It was so hard for us because it was the first time that we were apart from each other.

It was year 2012 to 2014 (if I am not mistaken), that we struggled to cope with the distance. However, that time, my husband was able to go to Singapore every other two weeks. He rode the bus for 6 hours just to see us on weekends.

My husband was so eager to go back and be with us and so he really did his best to be equipped with skills and knowledge for him to be able to land a good job in Singapore. He succeeded and we are thankful that he has a stable job now in Singapore.

If you are new here in my blog, my children and I moved here in the Philippines because of the stress that I had in my work in Singapore. I had panic attacks at night and I cannot litterally breathe. So when we moved here in the Philippines, the anxieties eventually were gone.

As of the moment, we are in a long distance relationship for almost 2 years now. We haven’t seen each other for more than a year because of this pandemic. We are coping with it and the hardships made us plan for goals of when we could be together again (of course by the help of God).

I just want to share with you some tips on how to make a long distance relationship works.

  1. Make time for each other – Being busy is sometimes an excuse. Of course we respect each other’s busyness. However, my husband sees to it that he is there. Whenever he calls me, I will pause on whatever I am doing to accomodate him. We already established some habits on when we will talk, in the morning during breakfast (before he’ll work), lunch time (to see his children eating) and night time (before sleeping). There are lots of messages over facebook and imessage too.
Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

2. Be each other’s confidant – Sometimes we feel down about something and we would want to have somebody to talk to.. the best person to share your feelings with is your spouse. Personally I believe that if you are married, you shouldn’t be very close to someone of the opposite gender. Even if you think it is platonic, but this is out of respect for your spouse and also to avoid any future conflicts.

3. Pause when you are angry – Let’s admit it.. we say mean things that we really don’t mean when we are angry. I always avoid this by giving myself time to think and reflect on why I am angry. I don’t nag and I hate to repeat things that I already said. Reason why I tend to be very frank and say things straight to the point. So whenever I feel like I want to argue with my husband, I’ll just send him a message first that I will talk to him later. Through this, I am having some time to think of what I need to say and reflect if my reasonings are valid. I believe, everything could be talked about especially when both parties know how to listen.

Photo by Anna Tarazevich on Pexels.com

4. Say what is on your mind – Women sometimes assume that men know what’s in their mind.. Men are not fortune tellers, they wouldn’t know why women are upset and what women want. I always believe this, that is why I always say what I feel so that it would not bother me anymore. So whenever I think of something about what I noticed about him or what I am expecting from him, I just say it. My husband and I have an open communication, we can say anything to each other because we believe that it is only us that could understand each other. We are the ones involve in this relationship.

5. Have a common goal together – There is a reason why you are away from each other. For us, the reason is financial (of course). Hence, we established a common goal of eliminating this reason. Our everydays are full of dreams and plans on the desire of being together. This is one thing that I cherish on this journey, enjoying each day by working on our goals.

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

6. Being completely honest to each other – Honesty is one of the key factors of a successful marriage. I trust my husband and he is the one who established this trust. The moment we became a couple, he gave me all his passwords. I was surprised because I felt that I need to do the same.

My husband tells me when he is going out, who is with him and when he is going home. I personally don’t ask these things but I think he is saying it, firstly to establish trust, secondly for me not to worry. So, we have this habit, I also do the same.

7. Make each other laugh – My husband and I have a good sense of humour.. I think this is one of the reasons why we really clicked. Every now and then, we talk about something funny or share some jokes. We goof around.

It’s good also to always be positive and to minimize conversations about negativity. We help each other by giving a positive atmosphere whenever we communicate.

Photo by Monstera on Pexels.com

8. Give each other a “me” time – Of course, we also need to socialize, mingle with others or do some other activities. My husband goes biking with his friends every Saturday morning. Occasionally, they also have some time for drinks. I also have some bonding time with my siblings or go to a spa.

We respect each other’s “me” time. When we wanted to watch movies or do some other activities, we just let each other enjoy.

Photo by Monstera on Pexels.com

9. Remind each other to be grateful – The reason of not being together is financial and sometimes the goal of being together takes a long time. Before this pandemic, my husband was always here every month, in fact he already bought plane tickets that was good for 6 months. However, now it is more than a year and sometimes we are being impatient and tired on what we are doing. But we always remind each other of the blessings that we are receiving amidst this pandemic. We have good health, shelter and food. These are major things that we should be thankful for.

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

10. Trust your relationship – Eventually, the waiting will come to an end. Just hold on to the relationship that you built. The memories that you had and will be having in the future. What matters is what is on the other side of the bridge. Hold on to the love that you have for each other. The goals that you have together.

8 Tips for home safety 2021

Since we lived in Singapore for almost 9 years before we decided to move here in the Philippines, we are a little cautious on our safety and security. Singapore is one of the safest country in the world, but we still had the habit of locking the gate when we go in and out of our flat. We brought that habit here in the Philippines. Though some of our neighbors here in our subdivision do not have fence or gate, I still do lock our gate everytime we go in and out of our house.

At first I was really paranoid about other people looking at us or trying to talk to us.. but Filipinos are friendly and so majority of us would like to open a conversation to other people. I am still adjusting on this behavior..

When we are in the mall, I am holding my two kids like their hands are chained on my hands.. Haha.. (Well this is pre-covid)

I think one of the reasons why I am really cautious is because of the news in the Philippines that I watched when I was in Singapore and also the posts in social medias. When we were about to move here, I avoided watching the news already and unfollowed the news programs in facebook.

There is no harm on being cautious and aware of the things that we need to do for safety..

Here are the things that I do at home to feel safe.

  • Always locking the gate – Since this is a habit that I brought from Singapore, I believe it is okay even if I have to always get the key to unlock it.
Photo by Bich Tran on Pexels.com
  • Always locking the screen doors – Houses here have screen doors so that we can open the main doors and bugs will not come inside.
Photo by Nothing Ahead on Pexels.com
  • Locking the door and windows before sleeping or when leaving the house
  • Not opening the gate to strangers – If somebody is looking for someone, I will ask first who is he looking for. If he doesn’t know, I will just ignore the person. I also taught this to my children, that somebody needs to know who are they looking for.
  • Not giving information to people calling on the phone – When somebody calls someone, he needs to know who they are calling to. They should not ask who is the person who answered the call and where is that person living. So, I am really not fond of entertaining calls from others who do not know who are they calling.
Photo by Moose Photos on Pexels.com
  • Erasing my contact details on the AWB of my parcels – Since there a lot of scams going on here in the Philippines, I felt that it is safe to erase my contact details on the AWB of my ordered goods. This is only to be safe, some people could use our details for something bad.
  • Turning on some of the lights outside during night time – I bought the bulbs with low wattage so that it would save electricity. It is good that the house is bright at night.
  • Having CCTV – Two reasons why we have CCTV, firstly is for my husband to see us whenever he wanted. Secondly, for our security.

There’s no harm in having these habits especially if this would give me and my husband a peace of mind.

Homeschool Year End

Yesterday, I decided to buy groceries today because my daughters’ cereals are about to be finished. I usually buy our foods every week. I wanted to finish early and so I went there before the store opened. The store is like 5 mins drive from our house (without traffic). My kids, since they are the ones left at home are very responsible on eating their breakfast by their own. My style of parenting is more of giving them responsibilities and teaching them to be independent.

Another task that I was not able to do yesterday is to fold the washed clothes. I wash our clothes once a week reason why I have loads to fold. My washing machine’s capacity is 14 kilos and I wanted to save electricity.

These are the amount of clothes I fold every week. Haha..

I am enjoying this task because I can watch a lot of tutorials and vlogs on youtube. My kids would not disturb me because they know that I am busy.

My children help me to put these clothes on their respective cabinets.

My children’s school has ended today. That was one heck of a ride.. Haha.. There a lot of learnings, roller coaster ride experiences this school year. My first time to homeschool was a success. I am still planning to continue next year.

So, I was also busy with the grades of my eldest daughter. I needed to submit the portfolio this week. A lot of scanning and checking of works were done today. This is something that I enjoyed a lot, it is very fulfilling.

Before I shifted my daughter from traditional school to homeschool, I did a lot of research. I was already doing the research when I was still in Singapore. I never thought that I will actually experience this.. It never crossed my mind that I will quit my job, then do homeschooling to my kids.

My eldest is enrolled to an international school who also offer homeschooling. The shifting was not hard. It was surprising how much we saved in terms of the tuition and miscellaneous fees.

The school gave us the curriculum (portfolio and year plans). As a facilitator, I was the one who planned the schedule and the pace of my daughter’s lessons, provided that it will cover the year plan. At first it was hard because at the beginning of the school year, I was also busy with the construction of our house. But on term 3, I was able to manage the time already.

Time management is the key for homeschooling. I usually do the lesson plan for the week on weekends. I teach my daughter in the afternoon because I need to teach my youngest first in the morning.

The term examinations for the core subjects (Mathematics, Science and English) are given by the school. The pointers are based on the year plan that was given on the beginning of the school year. That is why I needed to focus on these subjects for my daughter to have good results in her term exam. Thankfully, she was able to cope and I can feel that she learned a lot this school year.

I never regret choosing homeschooling. This is the best choice in this time of pandemic. I know that my daughter is really learning and it is by her own pace.

However, since after a year, she will be in secondary. My husband and I agreed for her to be in a traditional school if everything goes back to normal. There she could enjoy the company of other girls. We like her to know how to mingle with other people and to adapt on the classroom type school.

Home made Barbie House

There was an announcement by our Governor yesterday that all classes and government offices are suspended because of the typhoon. It hit the Philippines yesterday, it hit mostly the southern part and thankfully our province was not affected.

So I was planning three tasks today, firstly is to finish the “barbie house” that I started yesterday, secondly is to clean the house thoroughly (vacuum and mop) and thirdly, to fold all the clothes that I washed… Sounds easy breezy huh..

I started working at 9 in the morning.. haha.. just like in the office. My kids woke up a little early reason why I started late with my tasks. By the way the tasks do not include the usual things that I do at home like cooking, washing the dishes, bathing my youngest, etc…

I mentioned yesterday that I saw the old cartons that I kept in our storage area yesterday, since my daughter kept on asking us for a barbie house.. I thought of just making one using the cartons. I looked at the price of the barbie house online, and it costs 5000 pesos (more than $100). I know my daughter will just outgrow her interest on this.. Even if it will eat most of my time and I don’t know if it will work, I still did it.

The kitchen is what I finished yesterday.

This morning I made the living room in the ground floor first. The materials that I used here are the old construction papers, cartons of my youngest daughter’s milk, glue, paint..

I really did not use the ruler though.
Here is what it turned out..

While I was doing this, my daughter was painting the cartons, and so I used her paintings as the decorations on the walls of the living room and the bedroom.

I had a lot of pauses because I need to bath my daughter, then cook lunch and wash dishes. My daughter kept on asking me for the toilet. So I also made the toilet..

Though I feel I can do better, my daughter’s eyes are full of joy when she saw it. She was so happy seeing me doing this for her. Something that I might not see if we will just buy the barbie house. She kept on saying thank you and I love you to me when I told her that she could play with it already.

I rested a while, then proceed with my next task, and that is to clean the whole house. I usually clean the house thoroughly every other 3 days. I need to vacuum the house and mop it because of our cats. I think merely sweeping will not help eliminate the furs. It always takes me 2 to 3 hours to clean the entire house. My husband said, I should not be that meticulous on cleaning but I don’t see the point on cleaning if it would not be that really really clean. I will share with you in another post on what I am really doing why it takes me hours to clean the house.

Tasks 3 (folding the clothes) was skipped as I need to have some time also with my kids. I finished with all the things that I was doing at 9 in the evening. We usually cuddle at night and talk to my husband over the phone. My youngest daughter was so excited to tell my husband about the barbie house. My eldest daughter finished her computer lessons today, she usually help me babysit my youngest when I am busy with my tasks at home. In between the 3 days of not vacuuming, my eldest daughter is the one who clean the house.

It’s good to have some unusual tasks at home. It somehow widen our imaginations and explore our creativity.

Chill Rainy Wednesday

The sky was gloomy when I woke up this morning. I tried to sleep again but I remembered that I need to fix the clothes line that I bought few months ago online. It was very cheap and so it was easily broken. I needed to fix it because of the clothes that I washed yesterday, it should be hanged in our laundry area instead in the open area.

It took me sometime to do that, I was so pissed.. Haha.. Lesson learnt of not buying super cheap products online. I do my laundry every week and so imagine the number of clothes that I need to hang.

Anyways, I am so happy still because of the rain. My plants must be rejoicing because of the unlimited water pouring on them.. Haha. Rainy days just started. If my kids have school, it will be suspended for sure. I suppose there is a typhoon coming.

It’s good also that I was able to trim the grass few days ago. At least our garden wouldn’t look like a jungle after the rainy days.

3 month old grass.. before trimming
After I trimmed it.. I am not sure if there is any difference. Haha. I also took the unwanted stray plants.

This lunch, I prepared fish for my daughters. It is called Sisig Salmon. I usually cook fishes for my daughters, I just wanted to try a new recipe instead of just frying. I grilled the salmon that I marinated with salt and pepper. Shredded it. Sauteed a lot of onions, put few garlic, add seasonings, then done.. I put some onion leaves (fresh from our garden) to garnish. Quite simple but my kids loved it.

Photo not mine. But it should be like this.. I just did not put chili as my kids don’t like spicy foods.

When I fixed the laundry area, I saw the old cartons that I kept. I was thinking of making boxes as organizers of our documents. Instead I thought of making a barbie house. My youngest daughter was asking us if she could have a barbie house. I checked it online and saw that it is not cheap and she will just outgrow it, for sure.

I started to do the barbie house.. I have some plans in my head. I thought it would be easy and fast.. haha. I did not know that it will entail a lot of time.

The kitchen

I just finished the kitchen.. Haha. Don’t judge it. I also made table for two.. I was not able to take a photo it. I am planning to share with you the finish product in my next blog.

When my daughter saw it, she is so happy and thrilled. She wanted to play with it already. Simple things really make kids happy. Especially if they see that you really work for it.

So this is what I will finish tomorrow morning. I wanted to finish this barbie house project because I need to do the grades of my eldest daughter in her homeschool.

See you on my next blog.

Choosing Happiness

“Nobody can make you happy until you’re happy with yourself first…”

Oftentimes, we are succumbed by the notion of pleasing people. The expectations of people liking us is so high, that if that is not met, it really hurts when you fall.

Since, I was considering myself new here in the Philippines (though I grew up here), I was so excited to include myself again to my relatives and friends. I did the usual things that I was doing in Singapore, threw parties, organized get-togethers. I felt that I was accepted and welcomed again. It made me happy.

Photo by fauxels on Pexels.com

I tried hard to make up with my absence before.. I thought of weekly get-togethers and chit chats. However, I was not expecting that my presence was creating a not so pleasant environment. It did not slip my mind that I was not really welcomed.

People are not the same, we have different views in life. We have different perspective on how we will live our lives. Even if we don’t boast about our achievements, some people see that as something “negative” on us.

And so I was disturbed on what I heard and my happiness was affected. I was thinking that maybe.. yeah, I am proud. But I did not do anything… I just want to be with them. It just happened that my husband and I worked so hard in Singapore so that our children will be comfortable. We never did that to boast, we did that for us to be comfortable. It was never an overnight success, we experienced using one pot for cooking rice and dishes. Our journey was tough..

For a while, I was disturbed, because I was confused. Then, I just accepted that people are different and this is me.. this is us… I chose to be happy.

Happiness is a choice! Yes it is.. It is a decision. It is not a feeling. Feelings change. I chose to love myself.. This is the reason why I am here in the Philippines because for the longest time, I chose others before myself. I always want more because of others.. But what I have now is enough.. I don’t want to stress myself anymore.

Now, I am appreciating people who accept me. My views, my thoughts, if people don’t like me, I am okay. I don’t need to please people. I don’t want to apologize for nothing.

Last April was my 42nd birthday, my husband post something sweet in facebook. There are some people who greeted me that I am not close with and there are some people who are very close to me that did not greet. Was it intentional? Maybe.. Why? I don’t know.. I told my husband about it, I was a little bothered, but he said, we are now at our 40s, these things do not matter anymore. Meaning, why would I choose to be affected?

I mean, I don’t even like beef. Since I was young, I hate beef. For others this is delicious, but for me it is really yucky. Same thing with people, some people would like you, some people will not. Life is like that and I accepted it.

These I would not realize if I am not here in the Philippines.. I thank God for the realization. God opened my eyes on the reality of life. I always see goodness on my every encounter.. I thought people are genuine.. God let me discovered it.

There are people who genuinely love me and I chose to be happy with them.. I chose to give back the love that they are giving me..