Saturday, 29 August 2009

18 Beauty Basics

I have read this from a health magazine and I felt like sharing it with you because I have tried and tested some of the items here. I hope you try it too:

When you have a positive outlook, adopt an attitude of gratitude, enjoy close relationships, tap into your spirituality, manage stress, exercise sufficiently and eat nutritionally balanced meals. Your body, mind and spirit will glow.

Being beautiful is not about plastic surgery, your makeup, hair and clothing styles. It's about taking care of you, loving the person inside, being healthy and serving others.

1. Positive Attitude. Adopt an optimistic, adaptable, easy-going approach to life. Age is not a limitation to your ability to enjoy life.

2. Relationships. Close relationships and strong social support systems are central to happiness.

3. Spirituality. Develop an awareness of your spiritual side. Believing in something greater than yourself helps you cope.

4. Exercise. Maintaining physical strength is essential. Weight training maintains muscle strength and bone mass as you age.

5. Nutrition. Eat moderately and sensibly. Grow your own produce. Eat a diet high in calcium, antioxidants, fruits and vegetables. Minimize meat, saturated and hydrogenated fats, and sweets.

6. Managing stress. Take deep breaths, be grateful, and employ humor.

7. No smoking please. Smoking ruins your skin, hair, teeth while adding wrinkles and lines.

8. Alcohol in moderation. Wine may increase longevity, hard alcohol packs on the pounds.

9. Drink lots of water. In addition to a healthy diet with sufficient amounts of vitamins and minerals, drink several tall glasses of water for a fresh, clear complexion.

10. Be sun smart. Vitamin A is important. Use plenty of sun screen or sun block. The sun's ultraviolet rays break down the skin's collagen, which thins the skin, forming wrinkles.

11. Sleep tight. Sleep is not a luxury. Hit the pillow for seven or eight hours of quality repose and body repair. According to
researchers at Stanford University, problems with memory and concentration increase without sufficient shut-eye.

12. Smile. Care for your teeth. Brush, floss, and see the dentist every six months. Avoid drinking too much coffee or red wine. Use toothpaste that has hydrogen peroxide or baking soda to maintain a white bright smile. Smiling transmits nerve impulses from the facial muscles to the limbic system, a key emotional center in the brain. The more you smile the better you feel. Smiling gives your face value.

13. Regular Checkups. Visit your doctor at least once a year for a physical. For sexually active women, schedule a pap smear and mammogram according to your doctor's recommendation.

14. Pet a pet. Having an animal in your life increases joy while reducing stress. If you don't own a pet, borrow a friend's dog, cat, rabbit or bird.

15. Read empowering books. Be a life-long learner. the more you read enlightening and motivational books, the better you will feel better about yourself and the world around you.

16. Easy on the make-up. Contrary to popular beliefs, the older you get, the less makeup you can wear. Use olive oil as a moisturizer and don't glob on the foundation and blush.

17. Volunteer. If you want to look and feel better, help someone else. When we serve others, we serve ourselves.

18. Pamper yourself. We have only one life in this body. Take the time to celebrate the beautiful person you are. Get a massage, take a bubble bath, slather on soothing oils. Bask in your in-born beauty.

Your body is your tabernacle. Protect and honor it. Implement these beauty basics to create your own personal fountain of youth. Take a look in the mirror and admire yourself. You are a wonder of creation. Be awesome at any age! (by Cynthia Brian)

Sunday, 23 August 2009

Picnic at Scarborough Bluffer's Park and Water Baptism

It was a perfect day, a cloudy and not-so-hot summer day. A great way to explore Canada's rich and natural beauty. We went to Scarborough Bluffer's Park also known as Scarborough Bluff with the members of Servants of Christ Ministries - the church we are attending to. We arrived a little after 1:00 pm and had lunch there. The kids enjoyed playing in the sand while the adults played badminton in the grassy areas while me and Alexus enjoyed nibbling on fresh cantaloupe slices. After eating, we went to the other end, where there are few people on the beach. Others also opted to beat the summer heat in this place. On the way there, we appreciate the beauty of the place. High mountains and abundant trees on the left and long sandy shore and quiet waters of Lake Ontario. It was picturesque and Lito captured these shots for you to appreciate.
That's Scarborough Bluff - the perfect place to be water baptized. Water Baptism from the word bapto =wet, sink, immerse or baptizo =to sink, to immerse. Immersion was the commonly accepted mode of baptism in the New Testament. Believers immersed in water is a sign to the world that he has died, been buried and resurrected and is now living for Jesus (Colossians 2:12) Water Baptism is an act of obedience. The bible says "Whoever believes and is baptized shall be saved and whoever does not believe shall be condemned" -Mark 16:16. As the song says "I have decided to follow Jesus, no turning back".

Friday, 21 August 2009

First Hurricane and Tornado in Toronto

I experienced my first Hurricane here, Thank God it was short-lived and we're safe, I saw the trees bending from the gusty winds and the rainfall almost breaking our windows. The strong winds and heavy rains plus the thunder and lightning is familiar but it all happened all at once after a very nice weather.

I saw the news on TV and there's a report that there was a Tornado that hit Toronto. Here's the clip, for that very short occurrence, look at the devastation:

Just got connected

I'm so happy, we finally have our own internet and phoneline (we got Rogers) - sshh but we just wifi from neighbors, now they put on their security. Anyway, got the chance to talk to Faye and Irvin in New York, Ani in Mississauga and the neighbors here. The kids enjoyed it too, making a toy list and giving it to Irvin, hahaha. Tomorrow, will have a phone chat schedule with Jho in Montreal and hopefully Au from friends in Canada, now is our chance to catch up. buti na lang maraming left overs from the bible study earlier, no need to cook hehehe.

Thursday, 20 August 2009

Fun at the Park

My kids had fun at the park today. Our neighbor's kids offered to babysit Alexus while I clean the house and finish sterilizing Lex bottles. When I returned to their place, I found out that they went to the park so this is an opportunity for the 2 big boys to play and slide (it's just at the back of the building). Here are some of their photos and also the cute nannies of Alexus.

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Observations in my new environment

Those who would be interested to know more about Canada, you can log in or just type Canada or Migrating to Canada and Mr. Google will list different sites. This post maybe irrelevant to some but it will be helpful to those who just recently landed like us or those interested in what I have observed in the land where I am in now, haha, long introduction eh, but I just want to share the following I gathered in the 10 days I am here:

1. The place is nice, clean and almost close to nature. Abundant trees, clean air, birds and squirrels freely roam around. My kids appreciate this very much.

2. Environment-friendly country. Use of biofuel is encouraged (A bill has been passed to support this - Bill C-33). Waste Segregation and Recycling program strictly implemented. Back in the Philippines, I was part of the team who started the Environmental Management System in my previous employer and I really admire the system here. They really promote recycling and discourage the use of plastics. Imagine you have to pay for the plastic bag you will use in the grocery? Good thing I brought the Toy Kingdom and SM bags here. I wonder who among the mall magnates in PI will start this. I'm glad to see people here carrying "green" or reusable bags.

3. Canadians are really nice. I haven't encountered arrogant or snob ones. Filipino Canadians are special mention because they really help you out as you are just starting. They give used furnitures, baby stuffs, stuff for the home and kitchen or whatever they feel you need. Not just material things, they also give time and help. We went to church last Sunday and in order to get there, our Pinoy churchmate with car seats fetched us. Another neighbor/friend with teenaged children (who also arrived recently) offered to babysit Alexus if ever I need to go out, run some errands or do something at home. Our Kabayans are also our link to our prospect employers. Lito got his job through connections.

4. Transport System here is very efficient. The TTC or Toronto Transit Commission ( links the Subway system, buses and streetcars. The payment is by using a token or Metropass. One thing I remember when I used it for the first time, I only paid once ($ 2.75) from our place and rode 2 buses and 1 train going to my destination (one-way). Wishful thinking, I wonder how can that apply to Metro Manila LRT-MRT and bus links. Sana, sana...haay, hanggang ngayon bansang Pilipinas pa rin nasa isip. I hope I have a magic wand...

5. Advertising here is straightforward. I don't know how the business ethics applies here but I guess this is better so that consumers are informed and have a better choice. In the Philippines, you only see brand X or brand y in advertisements. Example: Brand x (Surf?), me chalk, Tide puro sabon (or something like this, I'm not really an ad fan hahaha) Here the companies are aggressive in their advertisements. Example: BELL'S ad - Get more Rogers for less than Rogers. Bell gives you more TV for $25 less than a month. Rogers is a communications company and a competitor of Bell Canada.

6. There are lots of freebies. Here in Toronto, 2 kinds of newspaper (24 hours and Metro) is either delivered to your doorstep or you can get at any subway/bus station. Just like Libre at our MRTs. The difference is that they are more like broadsheets, with more news and relevant information to read without having to pay anything. So guess where I get the latest showbiz buzz and sports updates when our internet is not yet installed? of course, more meaningful freebies such as education and healthcare are "bundled" in being a resident in Canada.

This is it for now. I'll post again as soon as I have something to add.

Saturday, 15 August 2009

Bad Office

August 13

Our apartment is near the business district and the building in front of ours is an office building. When we were at the kid’s room, I was looking up at the building and thinking out loud, I told my children “Pag jan ako nag-work, makikita ko kayo sa mga bintanang yun” (If I have a chance to work in that building, I’ll be able to see you from those windows). Then at almost the same time, my kids replied. Aloysius remarked “Wag ka na mag-office mommy, sino mag-aalaga sa min at kay Lex?” (don’t go to the office mommy, who will take care of us and Lex?) and Achilles said “Dito ka lang sa min mommy, wag kang mag-ooffice, bad talaga yang office na yan” (Stay here with us mommy, don’t go to the office, Office is bad). The children have spoken and I was speechless. Hahaha :)

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Red Hot Chilli Pepper

(August 12) Today, I cooked a Filipino dish, it’s a very simple dish – Pork Afritada. It tasted right at first but when Kyle poured the sauce over rice on his plate and tasted it, he said “Maanghang” (or hot). When I tasted it, it was hot indeed, then I realized I used a little of what they have here as “sili” (Bell Pepper). Back at the Superstore, I was overwhelmed at the sight of all colors, sizes and shapes of different vegetables - one example is the Bell Pepper. I saw mug-sized bell peppers colored orange, red, yellow and green. Then I also saw smaller and longer ones, I chose a small red one thinking since it was small, it’s not going to be too hot. Now I realized that I made a wrong choice, later I found out that the pepper I picked was of the Jalapeno family, the reason why my dish became too hot. Good thing, we have a Bible Study and get-together tonight, I’ll bring the dish for my new-found Filipino friends.

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

More Canada updates and photos

August 7 Checking out our neighborhood

Today is Friday and Lito decided to tour us around because by Monday he would be going back to work. We went to Flemington Recreation Center (public library, indoor pool and day care) then checked out Aloysius' new school at Grenoble Public school which is 2 blocks away from home and the next day, shopped food for the week at Canadian Superstore, 2 blocks from our place on the Eglinton West.

August 9 - Visit from the Flores Family
Our first Sunday here and we received more visitors today. Tito Nilo, Neil and Kelly went to our place to meet us and the kids but Aloysius and Achilles were still sleeping. They have not adjusted to the time. Good thing, they enjoyed Alexus who was so adorable and more than willing to be carried by his Papa Nilo and Ninong Neil and Kelly.

With Ninang Kelly

With Papa Nilo

Flores Family

Welcome Party

We arrived earlier than the schedule and I was amazed that the sun is still setting by the time our plane landed. It was already 8:21 pm to be exact. We spent an hour at the Immigration and Customs (the Customs Officer didn't bother with our things, maybe overwhelmed at our 9 luggages/boxes, they just checked on the Formula Milk we brought, I should have known and brought all our pirated DVDs hahaha), our welcome party was already waiting for us at the airport and they were not only one but 4 vehicles. Ani and Jeri came a little late but we were not able to ride in their car anymore, but thanks for the effort Ani. We were caught in traffic at Highway 401 and arrived less than an hour in our apartment. Gina and Randy Ladson and friends prepared dinner for us and I was glad to see the banner they made and posted in our living room - Welcome to your Toronto Home. Slept around 2:00 am. Happy to be home at last.

Monday, 10 August 2009

How to survive a long airplane ride with kids 7 and below (for flights 18 hours and longer)

My family and I had a smooth ride with Korean Air going to Toronto for the past 17 hours (yes, we were at Pearson International Airport one hour earlier than the schedule). I would not have survive the long flight if not for the following and I would like to share them to passengers with children in tow.

1. Bring Activity books, quizzes and mazes. This kept my kids busy especially while waiting at the airport and at the first Boeing that we rode because it didn't have the Personal Video at the back of the seats.

2. Keep them playing while waiting for the plane. At NAIA, there a Kid's Lounge or play area where Aloysius and Achilles played with other kids. This kept them from asking is it time yet? By the time they were seated at the plane, they were dozing off.

3. Bring your own baby food, water and formula milk. Although this can be requested at the airline, it is better to have them ready before the baby starts to feel uneasy. The schedule of feeding at the airplane might be different with the baby's. I fed Alexus before boarding and at the stopover. the Formula Milk handy is helpful especially when the plane is about to take off to ease on the pressure. I learned this lesson on the second plane because Lex was crying the first time we took off.

4. Befriend the Inflight Nanny and smile at other passengers.This worked for me. Each time Alexus would cry, the Inflight Nanny would come and comfort him. I tried to be friendly too to the other passengers who will get annoyed at the kids noise. The 3 Koreanas behind us were very fond of
Alexus that when its time for me to go to the lavatory and Lito carried him while standing (Lex wants to be carried this way), the girls asked if they could carry Alexus and when Lito handed Lex over, they were glad Lex willingly came. The almost 15 minutes these koreanas carried Lex was an opportunity for me to eat and stretch. Before we disembark, these girls gave Lex a necklace/choker as a souvenir.

5. A Portable DVD Player might help. We brought one which we used while waiting at the stopover. The Nursery/Playroom at Incheon International Airport looked good but we never had a chance to use them because it was closed since the AN1H1 outbreak. So the 3 hours waiting was not difficult - one Sesame Street movie kept my kids eyes glued to the gadget.

6. Bring portable games and charge them before you go. The PSP was helpful but only for a few hours because the battery life was short.

7. Take advantage of the Personal Video entertainment center in front of you. Whoever thought of this is a genius. Imagine you can watch the movie you like, listen to music and even play games. This is the airplane's replacement for our discharged PSP. There is a Kids Zone in the entertainment center and the movie Nemo amazed Alexus.

8. Wear comfortable, ready to breastfeed clothes. Each time Lex would feel uneasy and about to cry, I would just pop 1 boob out in my discreet mommy-matters-blouse and there you go, he would be sleeping in no time.

9. Relax, Focus on one kid at a time and Pray.

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

Getting Ready to Go, Parties and all

I have mixed emotions now. I was happy to see friends and relatives during the Despedida parties thrown for us last Sunday. The Castillos treated us to a hearty lunch at North Park in ATC then in the afternoon and dinner, my mom and dad rented a videoke and some relatives went to sing and drink with us. We had fun! As they leave, my heart slowly skipped a beat knowing that it will be years to see them again. When we left Munti the next morning, I can't talk to my mom and dad straight-faced because I know anytime tears would fall. I just gave them a hug before leaving and when I went inside the car I can't control the tears falling on my face. I said please don't see us at the airport so it would not be too hard to leave. As I am writing this on the day before we fly, I am crying buckets. I just wanted to sing..."All my bags are packed and ready to go" (BTW, we have 9 boxes all in all and 4 hand luggages) "Just kiss me and smile for me, tell me that you'll wait for me, hoping that you'll never let me go"....."cause (Tomorrow) I'm leaving on a jet plane, don't know when I'll be back again, Oh babe, I hate to go"

I'm not sure if I'll have time to update this blog regularly because I will spend more time doing home chores and attending to the kids so I guess I'll be offline here, in my plurk, FB and other social networks...See you online when I'm online :)