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The Kumon Reading Program




I am happy to say that my daughter’s love for books is very evident at such a young age. And she is always saying that she already wants to go to school. She got the idea from her cousins who are already grade schoolers.

So when I saw an ad about a Kumon 2-week free trial sometime last September, I decided to sign up my daughter for the reading program. It is a great opportunity to test if my daughter is ready for a school setting. Well it is not really a school setting because it is more of a tutor-student type. I am also curious about Kumon method and it’s great that the orientation they gave to all parents who registered for the free trial is comprehensive and inspiring. 

After the trial, I decided to enroll my daughter because when I ask her, she said she wants to continue and she seems to enjoy the worksheets. I think it is also a good way to prepare her for pre-school. Although it is not really a classroom type- she gets to see other kids and mingle with them a bit and get to be comfortable with a teacher.

I find the enrollment fee a bit high though. First-time enrollees need to pay Php2300 because there is an additional Php500 for the miscellaneous fees. Then it becomes Php1800 a month per subject (they offer reading and math) for gradeschoolers and below. The fee for high-schoolers and older is Php1950.  

My daughter needs to go the center two times a week and a session is supposed to be for an hour but sometimes it only takes 30 minutes. Anyway, my daughter also gets to take home worksheets for the days when she is not in Kumon. I am quite shocked that they also have worksheets to do for Christmas and New Years day. They said they do this to instill the discipline of studying but I think it is a bit too much.

These worksheets forced me to take an active role in my child’s studying. At first, I am tempted to just research and print my own worksheet because I feel like I am the one who is actually teaching my my child. Maybe I might consider this in the future, but for now, I don’t think I have the luxury of time for that option. 

I think the Kumon system works though it is also very doable at home. As for me, I am happy with my child’s progress so I would still recommend it to parents who want to give the best to their children.

One downside though is that the center where my daughter goes to is quite small and on times when there are so many students, I am not sure if the teacher can still devote lots of attention to my child. 

The Hobbit Film Review

Amidst our busy schedules and the fact that I seem to be constantly tired these days, I am grateful that my husband and I managed to watch the movie “The Hobbit” last Dec 13. It was a weekday and was not really in our plan. That Wednesday morning, my husband called me at work to say that their company is giving free tickets to the said movie and ask me if I want to go. Well, who would say no to a free movie ticket? So we went to Gateway Mall after office hours and ate dinner at Shakeys. I also get to meet some of my husband’s officemates before the last full show.

I am curious about this movie too because an officemate is so excited about it. In my case, all I know about the film is that it is a prequel of the Lords of the Rings. And I had already forgotten the story of this movie so though I am excited, I have no expectations. Of course, the cinematography and effects are amazing. Although I find some of the scenes too violent or gruesome as I am not into those kinds of films, it was certainly entertaining and not boring. I find myself remembering the story of LOTR as I am watching the movie. Elijah Wood ‘s bit appearance is a delight because he looks so much the same-even if the last LOTR movie was years ago.

 The ending is such a cliffhanger since I am clueless that it is another trilogy. It was pretty long too but nevertheless, I am looking forward to the second part of this movie. In the end, I am grateful for this date night with my hubby. This simple time together gave us the break that we both needed.



For Quality Locksmiths




I am quite ashamed to admit this but I am a little paranoid when it comes to locks. Whenever I lock a door, I would have this small fear that I may have trouble opening that door later when I need to. I feel this especially when I am alone at the house and I lock bathroom doors. Actually it had happened to me several times; I got locked up in a bedroom because the lock malfunctioned. Although my fear is not to be a cause of major concern, an assurance that the locks in my house are of high quality would still help in giving me a more peaceful mind.


So I think it would be good to always have the contact number of a reliable locksmith for emergency situations when the cars of a door or house won’t work or malfunctioned. It would also be nice to ensure that all the locks are made of high quality to avoid these stressful problems. People residing in Canada are fortunate because they have locksmith Calgary to go to. This company promise unmatched locksmith services for residential and commercial establishments.


If you or someone you know lives in Canada, remind them the necessity of quality locks and refer them to locksmith calgary sw. They are open anytime and all days of the week.

Things I Need or Want to Do Before 2012 Ends



Last January, I made a list of goals that I want to accomplish this year. Well I have accomplished some and realized that some of the goals I have set are too high. Thank God I am not that OC so I still congratulate myself for the things I have done well this 2012 . 


It is December 21, 2012 and according to the Mayan calendar, this is supposed to be the end of the world. Well, but it seems it has been postponed. 

As I have always been a procrastinator (a bad habit I have been trying to overcome) and a crammer, there are still a lot of things that I wish to do or finish before I bid goodbye to 2012. 

·         I want to finish the Simbang Gabi with my husband and mother. It’s the 6th day tomorrow so 3 more days to go.
·         I intend to go to the bank to deposit some of the extra money we managed to save.
·         I intend to treat my nieces and daughter to a movie.
·         I want to go to a salon for a manicure and pedicure.  
·         I want to finish at least 2 of the e-books I am currently reading.
·         I want to edit or update some of my blogs.
·         I still need to finish my Christmas shopping.
·         I wish I can still snag a schedule for a visit to the dentist.
·         I need to arrange a trip to my husband’s province in La Union.
·         I want to go swimming with my family on Christmas day.

Seems like a long list and just writing them down makes me feel overwhelmed. But I am praying for strength and guidance and I am determined to do everything well. There is no pressure on my part because as I said I am not that OC and it would be just fine if I failed to do some of the tasks.

Good Choice for Cosmetic Treatments


Advancements in medical technology now make it possible for individuals to enhance their physical appearance through various surgical cosmetic treatments. These surgical procedures though are not only costly; they can also be life-changing. So anyone contemplating to undergo a surgery to improve their face or body should think a million times before making that big decision.
 
Fortunately, there is a website that provides thorough information about popular surgical procedures such as breast reduction or implants, refractive surgery, weight loss surgery, laser liposuction and others. Just go and visit MySurgeryMD.com and you will be presented with a thorough explanation of each surgical procedures, the process on how it is done, the risks involved etc.
 
It is no secret that many women would like to undergo a breast augmentation surgery but are afraid of the possible complications, etc. If you are one of those women and want to make sure that you know what you are getting yourself into- head on to www.MySurgeryMD.com.
 
Always do thorough research before doing any important changes to your body via surgical means, visit MySurgeryMD.com now. Recommend the site to you0r friends who can also benefit from it.
 
 
 
MO

Quick Updates


Obviously, I am either too busy or too lazy to make a blog post these days but I am not in any way abandoning this blog. Hence this very quick update:
I am now 17 weeks pregnant (yehey!). Our family is happy and thankful for this great blessing. The morning sickness I had to endure during the first 3 months is far worse than what I experienced during my first pregnancy. Actually, I still experience bouts of morning sickness that last all day even up to now. But I am coping and trying to make myself feel better everyday.
Sophie who is now 3 years old is growing fast and pretty, She is very active and loves to sing, dance and read. I enrolled her in Kumon Reading program and she seems to be enjoying it. Would make a post about that next time.
My mother who spent a year in the US with my sister is back, can't believe that a year had passed by so fast. We are all glad to see her looking healthy and glowing. She arrived last Thursday and she'll be here when I give birth on April 2013.
My work days remain the same but I am mostly absent or late. Well, that's it for a quick update for now. 

Hope for People With Addiction



People who have to deal with various forms of addiction and mental health problems suffer a lot. There is a tendency for many people to judge them as hopeless or even as a nuisance to society. But instead of the harsh judgments, they deserve society’s understanding and sympathy. Fortunately, there are institutions that these individuals can go to for help such as the Morningside Recovery.

The choice of a rehabilitation center for people with addiction is crucial because it can guide the person to total recovery or push them further to the problem. Morningside Recovery is a recommended place for those battling with addiction or mental health problems because it is composed of qualified staff that is trained to understand the depth of suffering and struggle that people with addiction need to face. They dig deep into the problem by uncovering the person’s troubled past or acute psychological disorders. This institution works in the belief that everyone deserves a chance for a long term recovery by helping them form life-changing habits.

Its location in Newport Beach, California provides a relaxing and peaceful atmosphere that is perfect to ease troubled and confused minds. Those who are interested to know more about their programs can contact their institution any time of the day. Know more about Morningside Recovery here: http://morningsiderecoveryfaqs.com/

Philippine Restaurants with Online Delivery Outside Metro Manila


Whenever our family is in Cavite, we tend to be in a vacation mode so we would sometimes be so lazy to cook that we would settle for food delivery. But since we don’t have a landline number and calling via cellphone would be costly, we prefer to order our food online.

It is a bit of a challenge at first because at present there are very few restaurants that offer online delivery and from the restos that do have an online delivery, only a handful offer delivery service outside Metro Manila. I know there are online delivery sites out there but I somehow find them confusing.

So far, I only know two restaurants with excellent online delivery service that caters to customers outside Metro Manila– Jollibee and Max’s Fried Chicken.

I find the online delivery service of Jollibee and Max’s fast and convenient. However, of the two, the system of Jollibee Online Delivery is far better. Their website has easy to use features and the service prompt and complete. Once you are done ordering and paying, you will receive an email about the status of your order. I will always get  call from a Jollibee crew to confirm and clarify other things about my order.

On the other hand, Max’s online delivery is also easy to use but they  need to improve their email notification system because it would sometimes come late. Based from my experience, their staff would not give me a call prior to delivery. It is not really a hassle but it would leave me wondering if my order is already on the way. 

In the end, these two restos can make your staycation hassle-free and more fun. I hope more restaurants would soon offer online delivery too.

US TV Series I Have Been Watching


Watching movies and TV series seems to be my favorite pastime these days. The reason is probably because I rarely have time for other things. The ME time has become the time when the house is already quiet -when Sophie, my husband and aunts are already fast asleep. I learned that it is the best time for me to enjoy the benefits of being alone. I would spend that either by writing a blog post or watching movies and TV series in my laptop. I just want to share with you my favorites so far: 

Pretty Little Liars 

This is a series that thrives on the elements that would make a story click and interesting – mystery/suspense, dark secrets, youthfulness, young love, friendship and gorgeous girls. At first the story reminds me of classic mystery/suspense films like “I know what you did last summer” and it is easy to get hooked in the story. I also find the lead stars – Ashley Benson, Shay Mitchell. Lucy Hale and Troian Bellisario stunning. The series is based on a novel by Sarah Shepard and I hope I get to read that too.



 Awkward 

This is a show for teenagers and all the awkwardness that goes with it. It is a teen show but there are some things in it that I don’t want immature/misguided teenagers to see. I am hooked in this show because it is funny and crazy and kind of reminds of the high school life that I miss. There is also that love triangle touch as the lead character Jenna has two love interests- the good boy Jake and the first love kind of jerk Matty.



Once Upon a Time

I love this series because I am a girl who grew up craving those stories that involves fairies, princesses, prince charming, elves, etc. The story is kind of interesting as it focuses on my least favorite princess character- Snow White. I don’t like snow white because I find her gullible and weak. This story gives me a new and refreshing image of her. This story tells of a place where all the fairy tales characters are trapped because of a curse and they need a savior to break that spell.



Other US TV Series

I bought a copy of “Walking Dead” and New Girl but both failed to make a good impact on me. I find “Walking Dead” gory and boring, but maybe I have given up on it too soon. Then I find “New Girl” so corny- don’t find it funny at all. Then I was able to watch episodes of “How I Met Your Mother on TV and it’s funny so I want to watch earlier episodes. I also want to watch past episodes of “Gossip Girl” because I am clueless about this show and I really need to catch up on “Glee.”

I Love Japanese Movies


I was not able to go to the Japanese film festival at the Shangrila this year but I don’t mind as I have been watching Japanese movies at home. I am always excited to watch these movies from Japan because the story lines are always fresh, usually out of the ordinary. Most of the endings tough are somewhat tragic or should I say realistic. 

I used to write short stories and modesty aside, I think my stories would be a good material for a Japanese movie Most of these Asian movies though demand your full attention when watching because you need to closely follow the story so as not to miss important points. Anyway these movies also made me wish that I can visit Japan with my family someday. Here are two Japanese movies I recently watched and enjoyed . 

Confessions 

This film made me feel very disturbed. Based on what I researched, the film won many awards.


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The Girl Who Leapt Through Time 

Another love story involving time travel, I am really fascinated with the possibility of traveling through time. This movie reminded me that I wish to read the novel- “The Time Travelers Wife” soon. This is a nice story that will keep you guessing till the end. I like the story though I think there are some loopholes and the ending made me feel bitin.


Lake House and Il Mare


I am a sucker for love stories. I love reading a book or watching a movie about a great love story as they always make me feel better. I also almost always end up having a crush on the male protagonists in the story. Anyway, I just want to share two of the most beautiful love stories I have seen – Lakehouse and Il Mare. The story is interesting and magical because of the concept of time travel. Others may find it boring though. 


 IL Mare 




The Korean film Il Mare stars Jun Ji-hyun and Lee Jung-jae was released in 2000. I saw this just a few weeks ago and I find it better than the Hollywood version. Il mare is sadder though and has more silent moments that others may find tiresome.



  

The Lake House 


The Hollywood version -The Lake House was released in 2006 and stars Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock. One noted difference of this version from the original is the ending. I prefer the ending of this version.




Not So Cool Book Review


I have a blog post about Fifty Shades of Grey e-book and I have declared that I am actually giving away free ebook copies of it. However it doesn't mean that I love the book. I have read the book up until the 10th chapter then I realized that reading it is a waste of time. I have wanted to put the book down in the middle after Chapter 1 but I have given it too many benefits of the doubt. I hate the concept and I hate the writing. And I don't even find it erotic. I have compared it to Mills and Boons and Harlequin but i think those books are even better. The idea of a sadist 

I am so disappointed because I have great expectations. I also don't understand why 50 Shades is actually breaking record in terms of sales. I think the reason why it has become a bestseller is because of people buying it out of curiosity.

 
MO

Turning 30



This post is not new- it was written years ago before my 30th birthday. I just stumbled upon it tonight and was amazed at my thoughts then. Turning 30 is quite a big deal then. I just want to post it here in my blog.


30 long years! God…it’s quite scary when I think about it and more so as I write about it. It’s funny how I seem to cringe at the thought of its impending and inevitable reality. I’ll be 30 in a few hours and as I struggle to believe that it will just be another birthday, there is something about the number that feels like I am starting over a new phase. I feel like I am leaving something behind and moving on to the next level. I ponder - am I finally about to leave my comfort zone?  Am I ready to face the real world?

One of the most important realizations I have is that life is mysterious and magical and that no matter how you prepare for it, many things still leave us unprepared. It is amazing how you turn 1 with a bang but you are clueless. Often than not, a huge party is arranged and your parents will bring you to a portrait studio to have your picture taken. You are unaware, uncaring of what is going on yet even so, you managed to look nice in your one-year old picture, right? After a few years, you turn 7 and are just grateful for the gifts and the celebration. Then you turn 12, very excited and impatient to be 13…as you believe it is when high school and the fun start. Then you turn 16, life’s a breeze and everything’s easy. Age 21 comes and you are quite sad that your teenage years are physically over but in your mind are wondering why you still feel 15. You dread age 25; because you feel that you should have something to boast of by now. Yet when year 25 comes, you still feel like 15 and still feel so unaccomplished. Suddenly you are about to turn 30 and all you can think of is that you have probably spent half of your lifetime.

Can’t remember when I stopped getting excited for my birthday. I mean time comes when you don’t really count the years because it is a bit scary to realize that you have been here too long but feels like you hardly noticed it. All those years have come and gone so fast, you long for a rewind, a repeat performance. But one can never return and can even pretend that some things never happened or existed.

Thankfully, I can say that before I turn 30, I have a few accomplishments to boast, learned a lesson or two, and have seen and experienced quite a bit of what this world has to offer. My life is far from perfect and I have not really followed the so-called right path. But at least I will turn 30 carrying my wonderful plans and dreams for the many years to come in my life. My journey is just starting and I intend to experience more of what this world can offer.

I think being 30 sort of scared me because in a lot of ways as it seems that the years just roll but I remain the same. It is funny because I am certain that after 10 years when I turn 40, I will start wishing I am 30. Oh we make life so complicated!



Old Movie Reviews: Tangled and Black Swan



 I was arranging and deleting old files in my laptop tonight and happen to saw these old writings that I intend to publish in this blog. The blog posts are almost done and only needs a bit of editing but for some reason, I forgot to post it. I can’t just delete these files so I decided to post them here anyway even if they are very very late. Please pardon me for these super late movie reviews and blog posts.

Tangled Review

Tangled Review: Golden Hair and Flying Lanterns


I was lucky to win a pair of invites to the red carpet premiere of this new Disney movie so last Thursday my husband and I went to Mall of Asia to watch this movie. My invites was given by 96.3 Easy Rock as I am a member of their Facebook fan page and won by being one of the first commenters.

It was a rainy night and traffic was bad but we managed to arrive on time for the show. There are just a few people and most have free invites too. I think only a few people are willing to pay for a premier night event nowadays unless it’s a local film and celebrities will be present.

The good thing about this movie premier is that the movie is shown in Digital 3D and attendees were able to meet the jocks of easyrock. There were fun games and cool prizes before the show starts.

As for the movie, I have low expectations because Rapunzel is not one of my favorite fairytales. The Rapunzel book I have read as a child had a somewhat sad ending.

Surprisingly, Tangled is a must-see. The movie is funny and somewhat refreshing. The movie was successful in presenting the side of Rapunzel that desires true freedom. The reason why Rapunzel stayed with the witch for so long in an isolated tower is also explained. I especially love the part about the flying lanterns. It was so cute (especially in 3D) and wish to experience something like that in real life. The animators of the film did a good job as I can really feel the emotions of the characters. I find Rapunzel gorgeous. I envy her long golden hair.

I recommend this film to those who wants to watch a movie to relax and feel good.
The movie is cute and light - I loved it. Even my husband who loves action movies was moved by the story. It was a great movie-date- a perfect way to end a stressful day at work.


Black Swan: Beauty and Madness

I was able to watch “Black Swan” before it was shown in the cinemas and before the Golden Globe Awards so I deeply regret that this review is late. I got to watch it because a friend downloaded a copy of it on the net.


I requested it for a copy because I have always been a fan of Natalie Portman and because I am intrigued by the number of nominations the film got in Oscars.

I watched the movie with limited knowledge of the plot so it left me intrigued most of the time. The movie is crazy- I mean it will make you feeling crazy.

The movie shows what goes on in the mind of the main character so it is hard to decipher which events are imagined and which are true. Thankfully, it is not as complex as the movie “Inception.”

But I am so impressed with Natalie Portman’s dancing skills and her acting- she clearly deserves the best actress award.





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