December 26, 2013

Handicapped Musician

On our way to the mall yesterday, we've heard a good soothing voice singing Christmas carols,  Since, it is very crowded that time, I could hardly see who's singing.  My daughter told me that the one singing was a blind man along the walkway.  He is equipped with a very old and basic sound system and a harmonica. I'm sure that he is not using best blues harmonicas but the sound of his voice is good enough to entertain the by passers.  He's doing this for a living I know but I admire him that he doesn't simply ask for alms despite his disability.  He made use of his talent to entertain people and he gets some donations from those who felt happy with his songs.

Christmas is truly about giving and sharing and this simple joy of helping others who are in need always brings that joyful feeling.  

Vegetables Benefits According to Color

I grabbed this photo from FB as I would to share it here in this blog.  I've mentioned earlier that one of my new year's resolution would be to pay more attention to my health.  Not that I am not really doing it now, it's just that I want to level up. I am already gifted with a fast metabolism, the reason why I'm always on my ideal weight.  I am very happy and feel so lucky to have a fast metabolism as it really helps me to have a slim figure and healthy body.  For next year, I am planning to increase my intake of fruits and raw veggies in the form of salads.  I also plan of taking green smoothies everyday.  I am not sure if I could make it but I am really hoping to fulfill my plans.  As for the exercise, I think home exercise would do as I am not really idle. Maybe I could take my jumping rope out of my drawer again for some simple daily exercises.  It's also good that I get to do some household chores.  Though I have a house helper at home, I am still hands on when it comes to maintaining our home sweet home, so I think that's also a good form of exercise for me as I get to move most parts of my body when cleaning. :)

Going back to the chart above, it's also best to educate ourselves on what forms of health benefits we could derive from certain vegetable groups, so we could make sure that we're getting all the minerals and nutrients that we need on a daily basis.  Each color of vegetables presents certain nutritional benefits which is essential in maintaining our optimum health.

I really hope that I could make it. :)

December 19, 2013

Local Restaurant Ideas by Type

One of the best ways to figure out what you feel like eating is to eliminate foods you don’t want. For example, you may automatically be able to eliminate sushi from your list. Maybe Mexican food sounds horrible to you on a particular evening. If you can narrow down your choices, you’ll have much better luck finding restaurants in Ormond Beach.

Pizza and Italian

Pizza is a safe bet because really, how bad could pizza ever be? It’s good for families since you can all split a pie or two. Most pizza restaurants offer many Italian dishes besides pizza, like traditional or baked pasta dishes. Some of the best rated in the area include Stavros Original Pizza House and Genovese’s Italian Café. The former features Greek salads, grinders, and spaghetti along with a variety of pizzas. The latter offers Italian favorites like Calzones along with low-fat pizza options that have no mozzarella cheese. For more a more elegant Italian dining experience, you could try a place like Toscana.

Seafood and Asian

Since you’re on the coast, you might be feeling like eating some shellfish or other seafood. One popular option in the area is Alfie’s Restaurant, which offers seafood along with other American food like sandwiches, to appease your pickier family members or friends. The perk of this restaurant is that they serve all meals, including breakfast. They’re also situated right on the coast, so you can have an ocean view while you eat. Betty’s A1A Café and the Bonefish Grill Restaurant are other highly ranked seafood restaurants in the area.

Sandwiches and American

Another option for your palate is to stick with comfort foods like sandwiches, burgers, steaks, and other American food. The great thing about visiting American restaurants in Ormond Beach is that they often offer much more variety than other places do. For example, D.B. Pickles Restaurant offers American food, Italian food, kosher food, and they have a bakery which includes pies, cookies, and cakes. The Stonewood Grill and Tavern is a higher-priced and highly ranked American restaurant you may want to consider as well. Simply decide as a group what foods you feel like eating, and how you can appease the group while staying in your budget.  

December 17, 2013

Glad to be a Woman

Despite of the many difficulties a woman is facing.  I am still very glad that I am a woman.  No doubt that being a woman, we expect so many challenges in our daily lives and being a wife and a mother is perhaps the most challenging one.  I would admit, I'm not a perfect woman!  I have so many flaws and I sometimes arrived at wrong decisions in life which I later on regretted but I also believe that there is no perfect life but we could fill it with perfect moments.

When I was a kid, I always tell myself that I'm going to be a righteous woman, a perfect model, a perfect me!  But boy, I was still a kid that time, I don't know anything.   I thought that life is so simple, uncomplicated.  But I was wrong. Life is full of difficulties, of challenges, of trials and hardships but on the process, I've also learned that what makes my life meaningful as a woman is not keeping it perfect but being able to stand firm and whole despite of whatever trials, challenges, mistakes and failures that I have experienced.  

I know God promised me a good life but He never promised me a smooth road, so it's up for me to enjoy both pains and sorrows, happiness and triumphs in search for a good and happy life. :)  That makes my life more colorful.

With that I feel even more blessed.  :)

December 15, 2013

The Dangers of Asbestos and How to Protect Your Family

Asbestos is a natural mineral that was once used in homes, building, products, equipment, and machinery for its natural ability to withstand fire and extremely hot temperatures. Asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) were used heavily in residential homes prior to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulating its use. The regulations came after years of research and study, which confirmed that asbestos is the leading cause of harmful diseases, including asbestosis and mesothelioma cancer. Many asbestos disease victims are now taking legal action against asbestos companies.

If you live in a home that was built prior to the early 1980s, there is a possibility that your home was built using ACMs. It’s crucial to understand the dangers of asbestos and how to protect your family from disturbing it.

Asbestos Dangers in the Home

Many appliances, particularly furnaces, were heavily riddled with asbestos during the manufacturing phase. As previously mentioned, the fire and heat-resistant properties made asbestos a popular choice prior to the mandated regulations of its use. Even though regulations were set forth to limit the use of asbestos, the millions of homes and appliances that were made using asbestos were not destroyed or banned. In fact, there are a multitude of asbestos containing public school buildings, churches, and libraries that are still in use today. Fortunately, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has federal laws in place to help promote safety in public buildings should asbestos become disturbed.

As long as asbestos remains undisturbed, there usually is no alam for concern. However, if you live in an older home, make sure that your kids don’t roughhouse or play anywhere near appliances or other areas and products that may contain asbestos. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), typical products that may contain asbestos include pipes, insulation, ceiling caulk, joint compounds, and vinyl flooring.

In addition to the home, children should never play around or in any old sheds or abandoned buildings. Although these structures may seem exciting for kids, there is a chance that airborne asbestos fibers are hovering around. It’s easy to inhale these fibers, yet it’s almost impossible to remove them from your system. Since most signs of asbestos-related diseases don’t surface until several decades after asbestos exposure, you won’t be able to tell if your children have accidentally inhaled asbestos fibers until its much too late.

If You Think Your Home Has Asbestos

There isn’t a way to spot asbestos with the naked eye, so if you have an older home, it’s absolutely imperative to seek out a qualified asbestos technician before you begin any repairs or renovations on your home. Even something as minor as sweeping up dust around a broken furnace may stir up asbestos fibers. If you have a broken appliance, close off the area until it can be checked out by a state-certified asbestos professional.

Inform everyone in your family about the dangers of working and/or playing around asbestos, but do not panic. In most cases, asbestos can be encapsulated and disposed of properly without incident as long as proper precautions are made.

December 14, 2013

At Home With Lucio and Marcus

Remember our first shih-tzu pet Lucio? He is the first shih-tzu pet in the house which I bought for my daughter Mika Ella.  Mika was able to acquire her pet after a long time of non stop requests from me.  I would admit, I don't want to have one at first since I do not welcome the idea of putting too much effort in looking after this pet.  I've heard that having one in the house is tantamount to having another baby in the house.  Indeed, this is true.  It seemed that we have adopted another baby in the house (lol).  A year after and to my surprise, I've found another one male shih-tzu in the house when I get back home to spend my long leave.  My son told me that his friend in school gifted him with another shih-tzu pup which my daughter later named Marcus.

At first, I was really worried about having two pets in the house.  I am a person who loves to clean and organized and it seemed that this couldn't be achieved with two cute little pets running around the house. 

But these two are so adorable that the difficulty brought about by looking after them was replaced with "sheer joy".  We've learned to treat them as members of the family and they are always a part of our everyday life in the house.  As a matter of fact, even my husband fell in love with them and treats them as his own children (lol).

Now, I would say that our bonding time in the house always includes spending time with them.  In fact, now that I'm already a WAHM, these two are the ones who keep me company everyday.

Dogs are truly man's best friends. :)

December 11, 2013

Why Golf Gifts Are Great for the Holidays

Christmas shopping can be very stressful, but it doesn’t have to be, especially if the person you’re shopping for is a golfer. Some people golf a lot, and some people only get out a few times a year, but any golfer is going to appreciate a quality golf-related gift, like one from Pacific Links International. Sure it may be winter, and whatever gift you choose may have to wait a few months before it sees any use, but there are a number of reasons that golf gear is a great gift regardless of the season.

Long Lasting
Many golf-related gifts, especially clubs, last a very long time, which is part of what makes a great gift. When a golfer finds a good set of clubs, they’re going to want to keep it for as long as possible. Some sets of golf clubs last decades and some even get handed down to the next generation. Clothes go out of fashion, and electronic devices become irrelevant within a few years, but a good set of golf clubs will be useful for many years to come.

Lots to Choose From
There are plenty of golf-related gifts to choose from, so you can find one that fits your budget. There are clubs, bags, apparel, and passes. You can even purchase vouchers for golf lessons, as long as the recipient doesn’t take that the wrong way and is humble enough to take some instruction. Whether it’s a white elephant, a small gift for a coworker, or a large gift for a family member or spouse, you can find some golf gadget, apparel, or balls that will be appropriate.

Lots of Use
It’s the fear of every gift giver that the recipient is never going to actually use the gift, but there’s little chance of this with golf items. Even if they only get out a few times a year, golfers always find their way back to a course, and when they do they’ll be excited to use their new gear. If the recipient is an avid golfer with a membership like those offered by PacificLinks International, your gift could end up being the most used gift they receive all year.

December 6, 2013

A Day At Immaculate Concepcion Church at Chantaburi Thailand

It was not long ago since my last visit to Chantaburi Thailand and every time I visit the place, I would always take time to drop by at the one and only Catholic church in this province of Thailand. Immaculate Concepcion Church though is considered the biggest Catholic church in the whole of Thailand and it was very fortunate for me that it is located in Chantaburi which is just an hour ride from where I worked in Cambodia.  I'm staying at the boarder so Chantaburi is very accessible to us.

I paid a visit to this church once again even though I've already visited it last time because that time, I am already thinking of resigning from my job and go back home to the Philippines for good.  I am not sure whether that would be my last visit to the church though as in case we go back to Thailand, we're probably just stay in Bangkok or perhaps in Phuket.  But I will always have good memories of this very big and beautiful church.

I took this time to offer a prayer for my loved ones and to thank the Lord for all the good things and happy memories that I've got during my more than 6 years of stay in Cambodia.  I may not have the "perfect life" during the entire period of my stay there but I still considered it a blessing as I've met a lot of  people and some of them even became my good friends.  I was able to earn and provide for the comfort of my family and I was able to save and invest for the family's future.  It's not a s big and grand as what others aim for but for me, I had enough. :)

I will always remember this church and this nice province of Thailand.

December 5, 2013

Christmas Parties

I guess a lot of people are already starting to plan for their traditional Christmas parties whether be it at home, at school or at work. There's always a great fun and excitement associated with having parties but Christmas season will always be special as this we consider as the most special time of the year.  It is during this season that  we get closer and nearer to our families and friends and of course to our saviour Jesus Christ.  It is a time for giving and sharing and showing our loved ones how much we care for them. But how do we normally celebrate Christmas? Well, aside from the traditional dinners, we also have exchange of gifts and greetings. Attending the holy mass is one important part of the celebration and of course, chatting and non stop singing and dancing always follow.

Some families are even renting videoke sets and some are using special sound system to make their party more festive while the teenagers usually love to play guitar and other modern musical instruments like cool martin backpacker guitar at musicians friend.

Indeed there's always something special about Christmas that we look forward to every year and for me it's one great event that truly memorable and special for the whole family. :)

Christmas Cupcakes

Finally, we're done with our Christmas cup cakes designs which of course will be available through our online shop.  We're very pleased with the designs that we came up with and of course, the taste. :)

These will come in special Christmas packaging and will be good for parties as give aways or simply as personalized gifts to our families and friends.  Our online customers are increasing in number and we have lots of repeat customers, so we are always on a look out for new ways to improve our products.

I hope that these new cup cake designs especially made for the holidays will suit our customer's discriminating taste. :)

All available at Marcus Cupkeys!.

December 4, 2013

Get Relief from an Opiod Addiction

If you or a loved one has an OxyContin addiction, it can be a heavy load to carry. No one wants to be addicted to anything. You lose your ability to control your life and you become a slave to your addiction. You or your loved one does not have to continue to live a life of addiction. With help from professionals at Sherwood Hills and other such facilities, a life can be free from addiction and agency can be restored. It is important to understand what OxyContin addiction is and how recovery can be achieved.

Drug Information

OxyContin belongs to a class of drugs called narcotic analgesics. It is a narcotic opiod pain relief. It is usually prescribed for pain relief after surgery or a major injury. OxyContin and Oxycodone are both the same drug, with different release patterns. OxyContin is a time-released opiod and is usually taken every 12 hours versus every 4-6 hours with Oxycodone.

Side Effects

Whether the drug is being used properly or being abused, it comes with side effects. How a particular person’s body reacts to the drug varies from person to person. Some of the side effects from OxyContin include the following:
·         Hallucination
·         Confusion
·         Fainting
·         Dizziness
·         Loss of appetite
·         Swelling of the mouth, face, or eyes
·         Slowed breathing
·         Fast or slow heartbeat
·         Constipation
·         Mood changes


Most of the time, addiction comes after a person is legitimately taking the drug after for pain relief an injury or surgery. Because the drug can decrease anxiety, cause euphoria, and mental relaxation, many people get hooked on the side effects before they even realize it. Then, after they are hooked, they have to increase the amount taken because of a tolerance build up. Once an addiction is acknowledged, it is important that the person who is addicted is monitored by a medical professional, preferably at a clinic such as Sherwood Hills or other in-patient or out-patient facilities. The side effects of withdrawal from OxyContin can be distressing at best and deadly at worst. It is important to have medical professionals to help with the recovery journey.

Have Faith!

I've seen this quote a number of times in the past and until this very day, it never fails to convince me that this is indeed very true.  Most of us had undergone defeats and failures in our lives in one way or another and when we're going through this stage, there is a big tendency for us to feel that it is already the end of the world as well as our lives.  I myself had been guilty of this a number of times in the past.  I'm a person who's having a difficulty coping up with heart breaks, be it due to relationships, family or work.  Whenever I am confronted with a situation, I always feel that I'm all alone and helpless.  I would lock up myself in a room and cry in pain but I'm glad that I've survived everything from my past.  As what others used to say, time heals all wounds.  This is very true.  Sometimes, when you think about what happened in the past, you'll just smile and asked yourself, how are you able to have gone through all these difficulties in your life.

"If God is taking something out of your life, it is to make room for something better"

I have proven this many times in my life.  I always have that strong faith in God because God always directs me to perform everything according to His will.  Sometimes, we may lose track of ourselves but God is always there to remind us to stop and redirect our path to what is good and right.

At this point in my life, I am very thankful to God for everything that He has done for me.  I may not be a perfect me as I've also done something wrong with my life but God has always been good to me. So whenever I pray for something and I didn't get it, I know that God is preparing something bigger and better for me. :)

December 3, 2013

Keeping your Bikes Safe

I've been to most public places here in the Philippines and in some other countries in South East Asia but I haven't seen any facility provided for bikes.  In Vietnam, motorbikes are the most commonly used means of transportation and you can find thousands of these on main roads.  I got a culture shock the first time I set foot in Vietnam as I couldn't even cross the road for almost an hour due to heavy traffic.  Believe me, motorists wouldn't give way to pedestrians and you have to find your way to cross the street.  I remembered myself crossing the street together with the locals.  I simply mixed with them whenever they cross the road, so it would be easy for me, otherwise, I will be stuck there the whole day.  As motorbikes are widely used there, it is therefore very easy to find parking spaces for motorbikes on public buildings and private establishments.

I think, it is a good idea for some private establishments to also provide bike shelters as there are also other people who love to use bikes when going around the city.  An ideal bike shelter should be equipped with a proper roof covering and several slots to accommodate as many bikes as possible. I've seen lots of nice designs online and this can very well fit on any parking space.  

Bike shelters come in a variety of designs and materials and the most common ones are made with galvanized materials while the roofs are mostly made up of polycarbonate panels. A bike storage shed can be very useful to the bike owners as these can protect their bikes from too much sun exposure which could damage their bikes.  While some establishments provide bike racks, bike owners would surely prefer their bikes to be properly parked and stored.  Beside this, a bike shelter installed in any parking space would give additional benefits and privilege to clients of certain business establishments and will also make the place more appealing to the general public.  This could also create an impression that the business owners are caring enough for them and this can push them to become loyal visitors or customers.

I think it is not so costly to have these bike shelters installed as these are normally durable and could last for up to 10 years when properly maintained.

Christmas Sweet Treats

Here is another Christmas sweet treats great find, yummy chocolate brownies shaped and decorated like a Christmas tree.  Isn't this cute?  I bet this will be a great attraction in your Christmas buffet table.  Very ideal for Christmas parties or as give aways.  This is really cuteness overload! :)

Very easy to prepare, just bake your usual brownies recipe, cut and shape into triangles, decorate with Christmas sprinkles and insert peppermint sticks and voila! You now have cute Christmas dessert on your tables.

Make the Most of your Home Storage

As a home maker, being organized is one of my utmost priority. It increases my productivity and lessen my stress level.  I always make it a point that I keep everything in order.  It gives me a great sense of fulfillment when I see everything around the house neatly arranged, properly stored and organized. For me, what people see in your house reflects your kind of personality.  If you can manage your things effectively, that means you have the ability to manage your home, your family and your life too.  My family could attest to how much effort I exert just to keep everything at home tidy and organized.  I even came up with some DIY projects just to keep my way of organizing things unique and personal, and I am enjoying every bit of it.

I am basically an organized person and I am a certified home fanatic. From the living room, to the dining room, to the bedrooms and the kitchen, I see to it that all my stuff are neatly arranged and properly stored.  I am on outdoor person too, as I love hanging out in the garden and the yard most of the time.  I also make sure that our garage is free of clutter and there's no obstruction to the walk way as home safety is equally important to me. As a matter of fact, I am planning to install a bike storage shed for my son.  It doesn't have to be grand, just a small one that could fit an extra space in our yard. There's a lot of designs to choose from and I am considering something like these:

But given the available space, I would prefer to have something that could store several bikes at a time. Maybe, something similar to this:

The key to getting organized is making the most of your home storage.  Every space counts. Proper planning and the right design is all what it takes to make the most of your home space.  I felt the same thing for gardening.  You don't need a huge land to start a garden as this can be done even in condos and apartments. Remember that an important factor in getting organized is your mindset.  You maybe surprised to know that most of the successful people are those who are highly organized. They accomplished things because they value their time and skills and to them, being resourceful and creative is one of the secrets of getting organized whether at home or at work.

December 2, 2013

Cookie Cutter Pizza

As I was browsing online for some unique Christmas recipes, I found these cookie cutter pizzas which is just perfect for late Christmas dinner.  Instead of just preparing your pizzas the usual way, why not make your pizzas appear festive by using cookie cutters?  I think this will add some fun and beauty to your Christmas buffet. :) You can also make some as home made treats to your friends and families.

Since we are planning to prepare a spacial dinner for my daughter on her forthcoming birthday early next month, I think these cookie cutter pizzas will be a hit to her teen aged friends. :)

You can try these, too.  

December 1, 2013

Choosing the Perfect Print for your Room

There are many ways to choose the perfect print for a room. One of those ways is to choose a print based on the colors within it. For instance, a print with lots of blues and greens in it would look appealing in a bedroom with green walls. The colors in the print would complement the color on the bedroom's walls. Discover some other ways that people choose the perfect print for a room.

A person searching for the right print to add to a room's décor may choose one based on its subject matter. For instance, if a print with flowers as the subject would be appropriate in a room with a flower theme. Perhaps the throw pillows in the room bear designs of flowers and the sofa has a covering with flowers on it, as well. A print with the same theme would echo other items in the room. One example of a place that offers prints of all kinds would be Bruce Teleky Inc.

Finally, some people will choose a print with a design that reflects the occupant of a room. For instance, parents may purchase a piece of children's art for a baby or young child's room. Perhaps a young child is fond of teddy bears. A print of an adorable teddy bear would be a good choice. A print with a moon and stars theme would be appropriate for a baby's nursery. Many people like to have a special meaning behind the print they choose.

November 30, 2013

Vietnamese Banh Mi Sandwich

One of my favorite snack or merienda when I was still working at Cambodia and Vietnam boarder is the Banh Mi sandwich.  This is so popular in Cambodia and Vietnam that you can find it almost anywhere around the area.  However, I prefer the one from Vietnam as I guess, theirs is the original, anyway. :)  

Banh Mi is actually a term for Vietnamese Baguette This is actually a combination of  rice flour and wheat.  Banh Mi is usually stuffed with marinated pork and chicken, some pickled veggies like cucumbers, radish, onions and some herbs. 

I used to buy this before for VND20,000 or $1 and believe me it's so filling!  I love the aroma and the flavours of all the fillings. Super yummy!  I actually love most of the Vietnamese dishes especially their "pho" and Vietnamese spring rolls and one good thing about the Vietnamese foods is that, the price is really affordable.  

I actually love to try coming up with my own version of Banh Mi but I just wonder if my kids will like it especially my daughter who has more preference to western dishes. :)

November 27, 2013

Friend's Wedding

I was visited by hubby's colleague last Sunday.  She is on a vacation with her fiancee who happens to be a British national.  Actually, we haven't met before but hubby asked her to pay me a visit since I'm finally back home for good.  She actually came on dual purpose, that is to finally meet me and to pick up her orders from Krizza's Collection (my online shop).  He was with her fiancee and a cousin when she visited me.  It's nice to meet her and her future husband.

She asked me if I could be one of the principal sponsors on their wedding which I immediately agreed.  She sounds very excited about her forthcoming wedding.  In fact, they were here to look for the venue of the wedding.  She told me how excited she was to finally get married as she's old and single. :)  

She is actually looking for a possible design for her wedding gown and her fiancee has also expressed his desire to finally find the perfect wedding ring for the two of them.  They had already visited several shops and they are also eyeing for SK cobalt rings at

Their planned date for their wedding will be sometime in February of next year and I could see from their eyes how excited they are to finally tie the knot.  I am also excited as this is going to be my first time to be a principal sponsor in a wedding.  I wish them the best of luck and I'm sure that their wedding ceremony would be one of a kind.

Keep Moving

I chanced upon this quote online and I was inspired to share this here today. :)

I think this is indeed very true.  When I filed my resignation from work more than a month ago, one of the staff in the office asked me if I will not get bored at home.  I told her that I decided not to work elsewhere anymore and would be staying at home with the family and since they know for a fact that I was consistently employed for almost 20 years, she is wondering if I'm able to survive staying at home, doing nothing.  You see, I immediately got employed as soon as I graduated from college and remained working until last October 15.  She cannot imagine what would it be if I will just stay home.  I'm too young to retire (lol).  But, I told her that I won't be idle at all, in fact I will be busier at home since I have to manage the entire household, look after my two teenage kids and do some freelance works.  In fact, I am having business on the side plus I am still employed actually, but I have the privilege to work at home which is just perfect for me. :)

So going back to this quote, I guess it's really very true that we have to keep moving.  It is very important that we find something to do and it is also important that we do something that we truly enjoy. Life is full of surprises and in every surprise, there's always a challenge.  It is from these challenges that we find meaning in our lives, so to keep our life meaningful, we have to keep going and moving.  That's the essence of living and surviving.  There's no need to rush though, we can take one step at a time.  The most important thing is that we live a beautiful life.

November 26, 2013

Post-Treatment Steps: Recovery Resort and More

Having spent a month, several months, or even a year sober does not mean that the journey of sober living has ended. Once you have received treatment for the amount of time that professionals recommended for you, you still have a lot of work to do. Being fully conscious of your addiction, your temptations, and your areas of weakness are just part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Continue reading for more information on what to do in the recovery phase, such as visiting a place like Sherwood Hills Recovery Resort.

Find Sober Friends

One reason people fall back into their old habits is that they stay associated with fellow addicts. This often happens because addicts have lost their sober friends on the road that they’ve chosen, leaving them with few options: be friends with addicts, or be alone. The fact is that many people are on the same route as you. You can find people who are battling to stay sober. You can strengthen each other on the path of sober living as these friends can help you avoid the wrong situations. You can find sober friends by joining a support group and regularly attending meetings. Another aspect of this is to take the chance to help someone else. This is a good way for you to be accountable.

Therapy and Mental Health

One important aspect of treatment was the regular therapy and counseling that you received. Whether it was group or individual therapy, all of it was important for your recovery. It is important to prioritize and keep appointments with your therapists after you have left rehab. Doing healthy things for your mental health like exercise and goal-setting, or staying busy in general, is extremely important.

Change the Scenery

It can also be hard to return to your same residence after receiving help. If there are triggers, other addicts, or codependents at home, that’s not a healthy place for you to be. One option is to stay for a while at a place like Sherwood Hills Recovery Resort. A sober living environment can be a great transition for you instead of jumping right back in to regular life. These types of places can help you build new friendships and continue the pattern of mental health through therapy so that you can stay sober.

November 15, 2013

Christmas Shopping

I spent my first 3 weeks in the Philippines trying to fix every little thing in the house.  If you are frequenting this blog, then you may read in the past that I've been mentioning about the great flood that hit our city sometime last September and as a result, almost all of the entire city was submerged in water and some houses were even destroyed as water has gone up to as high as the roofs.  Our subdivision is also situated in a low lying area but because our house is elevated, the flood still get into the house but not as high as what others experienced.

The kids and our house helper have done everything to clean up and restore everything back in shape but I have done final touch up to ensure that everything gets organized the way it was before. I've thrown some old furniture which were damaged by the flood. I've asked someone to make custom made furniture for us to replace the old ones.  I did a lot of organizing and fixing for the past weeks and I'm pleased that everything is getting better now.  Inspecting my personal stuff, I was saddened by the fact that most of my treasured handbags and wallets which were all bought by hubby were likewise damaged.  In as much as I don't want to, I need to replace some as I badly needed these for my personal use.  Good to know that there are some lovely handbags and wallets available at Zalora.  I browsed through their site and discovered some great designs from Rebecca Minkoff collection.  Well, this brand maybe a little bit pricey for some, but I can vouch for the quality of these products as I happened to own one bag from their line before.  I might look for some gift items as well to complete my shopping list.

I think this handbag is lovely.  I love it's color. :)

and this wallet is my personal choice:

I need to prepare my Christmas shopping list soon and I am looking forward to get at least one nice bag and wallet from Rebecca Minkoff line to replace the worn out ones.  I hope hubby would understand that I've lost my personal handbags and wallets which he gifted to me due to the flood and that this happened beyond my control.

As a home maker, it is very important for me to prepare my Christmas shopping list early as I need to work on a budget.  Not only that, I also need to prepare my Christmas menu this early as I wanted our Christmas celebration this year to be truly especial as I was not always home for Christmas for the past six years. :)

Christmas is the most expensive season of the year but for me, it is the happiest ever.

November 14, 2013

Inspire All You Can Sale

I just want to give way to this advisory from OMF Lit about their ongoing nationwide book sale.  This will be for a good cause, that is to help the victims of super typhoon Yolanda, thus everyone is invited to participate and be a part of this campaign.

For the first time ever, OMF Lit Bookshops

Philippine Christian Bookstores all over the country will be having a joint Inspire-All-You-Can sale! From November 15-30, enjoy a 20% discount on OMF Lit published and distributed books at all OMF Lit Bookshops and PCBS branches nationwide!

But more importantly, all purchases you make at our OMF Lit Bookshops will help our brothers and sisters affected by Typhoon Yolanda. A portion of our sales from November 15 up to December 31 will go to relief efforts. You can also drop off your cash donations at any of our bookshops and we will make sure that they will reach those who are most in need of your help.

Inspire our loved ones, colleagues, classmates and even strangers through words that can challenge, encourage and change their lives.

Dental Office Services: Maintenance and Cosmetics

The appearance of your smile and the comfort of your mouth can do a lot to make you feel good and confident. Dentists offer you a lot of services to help you both maintain the health of your teeth and improve the appearance of your smile. Having a healthy and pleasing smile can increase your sense of self-confidence. Also, proper dental care will eliminate pain and discomfort in your mouth, allowing you to eat and drink without negative side effects from your mouth. Here are some of the standard maintenance and cosmetic services you can get at a dental office. For more specific information on dental services available to you from a dentist, you can visit a website like

Maintenance Services

Dentists recommend that you have your teeth cleaned regularly—at least once a year, but preferably once every six months. At a dental cleaning, you will get your teeth cleaned deeply in order to get rid of the plaque in the hard-to-reach areas of your mouth. At regular cleanings, your dentist will also identify any cavities, decay, or disease that may be present in your teeth or gums. Without regular checkups, decay may go unchecked and develop to a degree that requires extensive and expensive repair work. These regular exams allow your dentist to identify and get rid of any problems in your mouth earlier in order to save you money and work further down the road.

Cosmetic Services

You can also go to your dentist for cosmetic services to enhance dental appearance. One popular cosmetic service is teeth straightening. People who have crooked teeth will often invest in clear or traditional braces to straighten their teeth and increase their confidence in their smile. Your dentist can determine how extreme your case is in order to determine the best process for straightening. In addition, many people choose to have their teeth whitened in order to reverse the everyday effects of teeth yellowing. Teeth whitening, like straightening, can help you enhance your smile’s appearance, which can make you feel more confident about yourself. If you would like more information on specific services and procedures available from a dental office, you can visit a site like

November 11, 2013

Typhoon Yolanda Relief Operations

I am currently watching Kris TV and was very touched by the gesture shown by some volunteers who are currently at ABS-CBN warehouse packing some relief goods for the victims of typhoon Yolanda at Tacloban and Leyte.  The donations that Ms. Kris Aquino was able to secure from her advertisers like San Miguel, Procter and Gamble, Subamarino and CDO was also overwhelming.  These companies have donated thousands of cases of canned goods, bath soaps, mineral water, sacks of rice and other food products for the typhoon victims.  

What happened to the Philippines and to our countrymen at the Visayan region is not a thing to be happy about but the camaraderie, team work and selfless giving that we can witness from our other "kababayans" is truly admirable. 

I've been watching news updates from ABS-CBN daily and so far the aids received by the Philippine government and other NGO's from both local and foreign sources for the restoration and relief efforts at Tacloban and Leyte keeps on increasing and with these aids both in cash and kind, it is expected that the devastated areas will soon be back to normal.

Kudos to some movie personalities who also took part in sharing their blessings through public auctions, garage sale and various forms of fund raising campaigns.  The same can be said to some private individuals who share their time and whatever little thing they have for the victims.

"Every day may not be good but there is something good in everyday!"

November 8, 2013

DJ No More

My brother used to be a DJ.  I remember how great he was hopping from 1 discotheque to another as he got several assignments as a Disc Jockey.  He got a great voice thus he also had regular stints at a local radio station in the city.  He also do voice over for modelling shows in Japan.  He got a colorful life back then.  I used to visit him in the clubs and discotheques where he used to work and I'm quite fascinated how good he was in operating an exceptional thunderbolt audio interface.

Sometimes, I would invite my high school friends to the discotheque where he used to work and they are all praising his good voice and exceptional talent.  Now that he's gone old, he's no longer doing the same job. But I am sure that he will always remember those days that he was active in this field.  There's a lot of fun memories and great times that he had shared with his friends and colleagues which I'm pretty sure that he still treasure fondly in his heart.  I'm one proud sister!

November 1, 2013

Hobby Turns Into a Business

I have one revelation to make, one of my passions is baking.  I really love to bake and I want to be good at it.  Well, I'm not in the status yet of a good baker, but I will in due time (lol).   I would admit, I started with this hobby quite late as I am very busy with my job and very focused on my career for the longest time in my life.  When I was still in Cambodia, I encouraged my kids to study baking during their summer break and asked them to purchase baking supplies and equipment.  They too, loved the idea and immediately started learning how to bake.  It did not take long for them to learn the craft and I'm glad that they are enjoying this as a hobby.  They started baking few samples:

Some of their friends who tasted the baked goodies loved the taste and the designs and soon after, they started to receive orders.

Now that I'm finally home for good, I am now baking with the kids. :)  It was very fulfilling especially if your customers loved what you've baked for them.

Now, I would say that our hobby has now turned into business and it's very rewarding, as when you do what you like, you don't feel like working but just doing things for fun and self fulfillment. :)

October 31, 2013

PRK Eye Surgery: What to Expect

Modern technology has provided many options for eye care. Glasses have evolved with thinner lenses and less conspicuous frames; contact lenses have become more comfortable, more affordable, and more specialized to specific needs; and corrective eye surgery has bloomed as a field, offering permanent solutions with various types of procedures catered to fit individuals. When deciding which of these vision assists to pursue, it is a good idea to learn as much as you can about each option. While most people know about glasses and contact lenses, and many have heard about LASIK surgery, less know about PRK eye surgery, which is just as viable a vision solution as the rest.

The Basics of PRK Eye Surgery

PRK stands for Photorefractive Keratectomy, and has been used as a vision corrective procedure since the mid-Eighties. Like LASIK, it involves the use of a laser to reshape the cornea. Unlike LASIK, PRK does not require creating a flap and is therefore more suited to patients with thinner corneas or other issues that make LASIK less viable.

Before the procedure, the surgeon makes a topographic map of the eye. This map allows the surgeon to target the areas where the excimer laser will reshape the cornea. The eyelid is held open and the technician adds a few drops of anesthetic to numb the pain. Once this is done, and the machine is calibrated to the correct setting in accordance with the topographical scan, the surgeon begins.

Coating the cornea is the epithelium, a surface layer of cells that protects the eye. This layer is removed with the laser so that the reshaping can take place. The epithelium regenerates in under a week. Cold laser pulses are then administered to reshape the surface of the cornea without touching deeper tissue. Once the procedure is finished—a process that takes approximately one minute—a contact lens is applied which acts like a clear Band-Aid. Unlike LASIK, there is very little tissue removed during the process, so the cornea retains its integrity.

Post Operation

Recovery from PRK eye surgery usually takes longer than a recovery associated with LASIK surgery. The contact lens is removed after the epithelium is regenerated, and the patient is treated with antibiotics and other anti-inflammatory eye drops over the course of several months. The eye may be more irritated, but the results are just as spectacular as LASIK methods, with the great majority of patients regaining 20/20 vision.

October 29, 2013

Ensaladang Ampalaya

Since the time I came back home, I've been experimenting with lots of dishes and  I'm trying to test my skill in budgeting.  I am now the official cook in the house and I do it upon the request of my two kids who had been longing to taste my dishes.  I couldn't blame them.  I was practically out of home for more than six years due to my work abroad.  I do cook for them once in a while when I'm on vacation but that's very seldom, so I also feel that I have to make it up with them.  I don't have much problem with my boy as he eats everything be it vegetables, meats or fish.  The one big challenge is my daughter who's really into meats.  She seldom eats vegetables and only chooses the ones she really likes which I can practically count using my fingers. :)

Right now, apart from baking, I'm much into cooking and I am hoping to get more recipes so I could try a variety of dishes.  I don't want to keep on repeating same dishes every week so I must exert extra time and effort to research and experiment.

I've seen one ensalada recipe using ampalaya and I think this is best to go with fried fish or grilled pork chops or liempo.  Thanks to for the recipe.

2 medium sized ampalaya
2 pcs. Medium ripe tomatoes, sliced
1 regular sized onion, sliced
Salt to taste
1 tsp Sugar
¼ cup Cane Vinegar
1. Put water and sprinkle with salt in a crystal/plastic bowl.
2. Wash Ampalaya and remove seeds.
3. Sliced thinly and soak in water with salt.
4. In a bowl, dissolve sugar in cane vinegar.
5. Drain Ampalaya. Sprinkle with salt. Using a wooden or plastic ladle, add in all ingredients and mix well.

I got to try this next week. :)

October 28, 2013

Pop Rock Music

I wonder if anyone here is a fan of pop rock music?  I was really never into pop rock even during my younger years.  I just don't appreciate that kind of music but I don't have any qualms about those who love this kind of genre.  Each one of us has her own preference anyway. Since I never stay long in the Philippines for the past six years, I am not really updated into the kind of music that's now popular in the Philippines.  I happened to watch some local TV programs and was surprised that Yeng Constantino who was a a "Star Grand Dreamer" of Pinoy Dream Academy (a reality TV show) has gone too far as a recording artist.  Yeng became an instant favorite of the Pinoy Dream Academy's followers not only because she sings well but also because she can compose her own songs and plays guitar so well.  I think she is a former band member or vocalist.  She's now the country's one of the hottest pop rock singer.  I wonder if she was trained in martin cst 000x1ae electric guitar (lol). 

Her talent in music has brought her into great heights.  She has been a recipient of several awards and she is now a well acclaimed pop rock star.  Way to go Yeng!

October 26, 2013

My First Week Back in the Philippines

I have already completed my first week back in the Philippines and I would say that I'm pretty much busy during this period.  As usual, I've done my cleaning chores in the house.  We're still in the process of cleaning up as we were affected by the great flood last September 23.  Although the kids and the house helper had already done around 80% of the cleaning and organizing, I still have to do the final touch up. People in the house knew me so well.  I want everything clean and organized and that I wouldn't settle for less.  :)

But apart from from cleaning up, I was able to have a great bonding time with the kids.  We were able to watch two movies, dine out a number of times and had a movie marathon at home.  We also do house chores together like bathing our pet dogs Lucio and Marcus, clearing up the yard and closets.  We're planning to hold a garage sale early next month as we wanted to get rid of the stuff that we don't actually need anymore but may still be useful for other people. So I guess, it will be a win-win situation.  I would be able to declutter and at the same time, earn a little out of the useless stuff in the house.  I would also be able to help others who would be needing those things in their house by allowing them to have those things at a very cheap price.

I still have a number of things to do in my list and that would take place after we are done with the custom made furniture that our wood carpenter is doing for us right now.  I have to replace the bedroom cabinet and the TV racks in the living room and bedroom, as well.  I still have lots of things to do in the next few weeks but I'm enjoying my time at home.  

There's really no place like home! :)

October 16, 2013

What You Can Do from and on a Yacht

How would you feel if you could spend a few hours on a yacht, living the good life? You can do that with boat rentals in Marina Del Rey. With the rentals, fabulous meals can be provided. Beverages can also be provided. The destinations you can go to are places you can get off the boat and take advantage of the food and nightlife on the islands, and then return to the boat to spend the night. Other trips are such that you don’t get off the boat, but you enjoy the beautiful water, the wildlife, and scenery that you will find all around the boat.

Island Fun

If you get off at one of the islands, you can go fishing, scuba diving, sailing, kayaking, biking, to spas, to museums, snorkeling, golfing, hiking, ocean rafting, food tasting, stargazing, on ecotours, on glass-bottom boat tours, on trolleys, on ghost tours, on Jeep tours, miniature golfing, to the movies, on Segway rentals, on walking tours, on wildlife observations, on ziplines, on flying fish tours, parasailing, and just have fun at the casino. You don’t have to do all of these in one trip; you can save some things to do on later trips.

Fun from the Boat

Staying on the boat has its perks too. There are dolphins, whales, and seals that are just waiting to entertain you that you will be able to see while you are on the boat. The boat can be anchored and you can have some fun on jet skis, or you can go snorkeling and view the beautiful underwater world. You can go deep sea fishing and catch some fish for eating on the boat or after you get home. Scuba diving is also something you can do from the boat, and they will have all of the gear you can need to have a great time. You can also charter boat rentals in Marina Del Rey for weddings, corporate events, holiday parties, celebrations, family reunions, and any other events that would be even better if held on a yacht. The sea breeze, the sun, the moon, the good company, and good food will combine to make for a wonderful time that will be remembered for years to come.

October 13, 2013

How I Will Remember Cambodia....

I am now on my last two days in Cambodia, a country which I considered my home for the past 6 years. To many, Cambodia maybe a picture of an underdeveloped country, a country that's far far behind from it's neighboring countries in South East Asia.  A country which only few people would dare to visit due to the absence of a well developed infrastructure, tall buildings, big malls, and all other attractions that tourists would always love to see.  I would admit, this was also how I picture Cambodia in my mind the first time I set foot on this foreign land.  But my impression of Cambodia has changed during my more than 6 years of continuous stay here.  I've found out that the country is more than just an underdeveloped country.  Contrary to what other people think and believe, the country is rich in natural resources.  If we are looking for a serene place far away from the bustling noise of the city, where our heart would rest in peace and quiet, then Cambodia is a perfect place to go.  

Those who love adventure and state of the art technology may not be able to relate to what I'm saying as I would describe Cambodia on a different perspective.  In this country, I've learned how to live a simple life, understand how Cambodians appreciate life after that traumatic Khmer Rouge.  Staying in this land had thought me a number of things and had enabled me to appreciate life more than ever.  Knowing how Cambodians suffered during the Khmer Rouge and how this created a big impact to the downfall of their country made me think that we are so blessed being Filipinos.  While we attack the Philippine government for not being able to provide a quality education and the best public schools in the country, I felt more privileged knowing that not all children here are able to attend a decent school.  I saw how people here live a simple life and yet, they are happy just the way they are.  They are warm, friendly and hospitable.

They love gatherings and they are very much attached to their traditions.  Contrary to what other people think, they had a lot to offer in terms of tourism.  They had the magnificent Angkor Wat, the beautiful beaches at Sihanoukville, the eye catching water falls and greenery and a number of temples which very well speak of their history.  They have a different kind of architecture when it comes to their public buildings which are usually French inspired.

How I will remember this country?  I will remember this country as a simple and happy place and a home to many Filipinos.  They maybe underdeveloped, but this country was able to give thousand of jobs not only to many Filipinos but to other nationalities as well.  It's good location and bountiful resources was able to attract many investors and had paved the way to the creation of more jobs for expats.

I will remember Cambodia to be a home to my many local friends, who in one way or another had inspired me to stay here and appreciate life, other people and culture.  Should I say that I began to appreciate the beauty of traveling and started dreaming of going to many places when I finally got here?

Cambodia will always have a soft spot in my heart.  I wish to be back here to visit Angkor Wat in the future with my family and I hope by then, I could see Cambodia to be more developed, more productive and more determined to recover from the bitter memories of the Khmer Rouge.

I've enjoyed my stay here and I never regret being a part of this beautiful country.

"Awkun Charan".   :)


October 5, 2013

Top Tips for Finding that Perfect Holiday Apartment in Greece

Follow this Advice to Find a Great Place to Stay When in Greece

                                             Photo by Peter Moons / Flickr

Want to find a holiday rental in Greece? The good news is that there are lot of options available. So many choices can also be bad news, however, if you don't know which apartment or villa to rent while you're on holiday. You want to find something with a fair and reasonable price, but you also want to make sure you have everything you need to enjoy your time off.

Finding the Perfect Holiday Apartment

Here is some advice to make sure you get the most out of your holiday rental in Greece.

Know Wants and Needs - The first thing you need to do is sit down and write out or type up a list of exactly what you want and need from an apartment. You'll be using this information when you search for holiday rentals online. 

Remember Your Budget - You also want to make sure you're realistic about your budget and how much money you have to spend on somewhere to stay in Greece. Knowing this before you start your search can save you a lot of time. 

Search Online - Once you've written up your list and taken a look at your budget, it's time to start searching online. Create a list of possibilities while crossing off properties that don't meet your wants, needs or budget. 

Make the Calls - After you have your short list of potential properties to stay at in Greece, the next step is to make calls and get more information, including answers to any questions you might have about the apartment or lease. This is going to take some time, but it's better to spend it before you leave on holiday so you don't waste any of your precious relaxing time. 

Get Professional Help - This isn't cheating. In fact, some would consider it very smart. When you get assistance finding a holiday rental with someone who has been through the process before, you're going to have an easier time finding something perfect. Casamundo Holidays is one of many companies out there where you can find holiday apartments in Greece without having to deal with all the hassles of hunting for the best holiday rental on your own. If you're planning a trip for any reason, they can help with all the small details while at the same time helping you avoid potential disasters - like getting to Greece and finding out the apartment or villa isn't what you were expecting.

About the Author of Top Tips for Finding that Perfect Holiday Apartment in Greece

John has been vacationing around the world since he was a young child. He uses all his practical experience to help other people get good deals when trying to travel to various locations around the world. He also likes to write guest posts to help people learn how to get more out of life.

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