Hey, how are ya?

The weekend was pretty eventful. We did more than the usual grocery, church, and lunch with the family hehe. Saturday morning I drove the car to Toyota BGC for its 25k PMS.


Everyone there was so friendly, even the person who attended to me didn't seem to be fooling me with the quote. I even got a discount. The PMS was supposed to run for an hour only but heck, I came in at 9:30am and left the center at 2pm. What the hell, right? I expected as much. But that's okay. Their lobby is comfy and they offer free coffee (Nescafe classic only lol), snacks, and candies. Not much really but at least meron haha.


Thank God I spotted a 7-Eleven across the street. I was able to relieve my burning hunger with a rice meal, siopao, and City Blends Prima coffee.

I love City Blends Prima!

Jeckie followed me to BGC after finishing his driving school orientation. After having the car checked, we went straight to Shangri-la Plaza for my dentist appointment. I had 3 cavities pasted! Then we went home to pickup our stuffed toys 'cos we were supposed to have them cleaned this weekend.

It was so frakking hard to give them away to the cleaners! They won't be back until after 5 days. T___T But what can I do, they're all stinking dirty already haha.

See you soon bbs.

The next day, we went to church, ate lunch at our tita's house, then played badminton! After a bajillion years goys.


If I had a better schedule I'd get myself a trainer. It's been so long since I sweat this much hahaha. After the game, we ate dinner at my parent's house at Fairview then went to fetch my sister at the airport. She's coming home from a short trip to Taiwan.


I'm really excited about it because she got so many treaaats! Love it! 

Another thing, my cancelled Shopee order got delivered by 2GO that night. After being marked as lost and getting my refund, apparently they were able to find the item and proceed with the delivery. 


Now I have 2 extra diffusers (which I gave to my parentss).

That's it for the weekend! How are ya?
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How to Stay Safe During a Lightning Storm

Photo from Pixabay

A lot of people know that it is not safe to be outside while a lightning storm is occurring. There may be some people who feel that it will be cool to walk or even play under the rain. This can be fun as long as there is no lightning. If there is lightning, you should not hesitate to seek shelter. The moment that you hear the thunder roar, you already know that you should find a place where you can stay safe. You can know more about the weather by checking the professional weather station. This normally makes use of different sensors that will predict when thunder and lightning may arrive in your area. It will help to know the different tips that you can follow so that you can stay safe during a lightning storm:

  • If you have some plans to go outdoors but lighting warning systems show that lightning is imminent, you should postpone your plans for the time being. Who knows, the weather may improve in a few hours and you may continue your trip then. If not, there are always other days when you can do your trip.
  • Finding a safe, enclosed shelter should be your main priority. This is one of the things that will ensure that you will stay safe.
  • Let us say that you have heard the last clap of thunder only 10 minutes ago. Do not go out just yet. Wait for at least half an hour before you go out. This will signify that the lightning storm is already a bit far.
  • You may need to avoid using water while you are indoors. You may think that bathing is safe but there are times when the lightning may affect plumbing systems. Postpone your bath for the time being.
  • There may be a need for you to stop watching television and other electronic devices while the lightning storm is occurring.
There are lightning detection systems for sports fields when you are outdoors but staying indoors is still your best bet so that you can stay safe during a lightning storm. Lightning strikes may not be very common but they can happen. It is best for you to stay safe.
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2018 Wrapped


One day, I asked my husband about how the year 2018 was for him because I was curious what he considered his highlights were. I thought maybe I could pull from his wins, after all we're a couple hahaha! But really, I was having a hard time crafting this post because top of my mind I couldn't think of anything exceptional about 2018. It seemed like one of those steady years where nothing extraordinary happened. Sakto lang. But once I started looking back, I realized that ooooh it's quite an eventful year naman pala. I guess it's because nothing really rattled me personally so it's easier to rate 2018 as a sakto lang year. It's as if I measure a year by its negativity lol. Looking back I could say 2018 was actually a stress free year and a very positive one too. And that's new coming from a usually pessimistic person. I also realized that most of my highlights involved the two of us as a couple and not just me, and that kinda struck me differently. Like, okay, there's a man in my life now and our lives are merging. What now?

My life is becoming more about US now and I guess I'm still adjusting to the change. I used to be very selfish you know.

So what the hell happened in 2018?

  • In March
  • In April
    • We sold our condo unit and earned a sizable profit from the sale
  • In May
    • We invested in agribusiness
    • And also invested in a family friend's business
  • In June
    • We took the car and leased a parking space
  • In September
    • We celebrated our first anniversary at Sofitel
  • In October
    • I was offered a 6-digit position at another company
    • My current company responded with a c-o
    • Aaaand I took it
    • Also, I hit the 6-digit mark from my sidelines!
  • In November
    • I drove to Tagaytay (first long drive) to celebrate my birthday
    • Completed the NO LATE NOVEMBER challenge
    • Received my 13th month pay

Thank God for the good year that was.
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A Year in Design

Here's a recap of most of my design projects in 2018! Logos, invites, merch, and for the first time -- videos and branding. I'm learning goys yeheyy!
Logos

Smart Farms PH

This is one of those projects where I regret not learning Adobe Illustrator earlier. I should make it a point to learn AI this year haha. This would be easier in AI, but I'm more comfortable in Photoshop. Don't be like me.


Snapsolutely

This is so cute, I enjoyed this one! I didn't know how to create videos but the client gave a Youtube tutorial so I said I'd try. Here's the output! 



Wedding Invites

Rickett & Rose Anne



James & Monique



Other Invites

Bianca Nicole's Magical Birthday Party



Edison's The Little Prince Printable Party Kit

The Pinspiration is real on this one.




Branding

Quest Adventure Camp

Trifold Brochure


Business Card


Visual Brand Guide

I considered myself to be in a design rut when 2018 started. I wasn't doing much, not learning anything new. Until one of my friends asked me to create a business card for her company. I said sure. Then it got followed by a lanyard design, a brochure, a tarp, pens, notebooks, etc. And I'm like ohkaaay this seems like a corporate design thing, if I'm doing more of this I needed a brand guide. They didn't have one, so I made one. Scratch that, I learned to make one.

It's actually kindof weird for me to create one because it should be part of the logo design package (whoever made theirs), but nonetheless I had to make something for them otherwise the brand would be a visual disaster.


Merch
I only got interested in designing shirts when my Merch by Amazon account got approved. But it's been a year and I've never made a sale on the platform. It's a freakin saturated marketplace and I'm finding it troublesome to learn the ins and outs (for now).

FIFA World Cup


It was too late when I started making themed shirts. I was only able to finish Mexico, Brazil, Spain, and France lol. Check out the rest of them here.

Cat Holic


Never sold any of these but I had fun drawing them! More here :)

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2018 Online Income Review


My online income increased by 24% in 2018. Thank you Loooord! Overall I earned around ₱117,000 which is something I'm extremely grateful for considering I'm not actively looking for opportunities and I only have one client giving me a steady flow of tasks hahaha. As usual, let's break it down!



On the average, I got around ₱9,700 per month. But it doesn't really feel like it because I don't withdraw money on a monthly basis. I receive payments on my local bank accounts and Paypal and I don't consolidate them, so yeah the extra money I receive just goes to my allowance haha. 

This year though, I want to try keeping my Paypal funds for as long as possible just to see it grow. I tend to withdraw as soon as it reaches 10k because we can already use that for a staycation or a date night hahaha but yeah, I want to be more mindful of where my money is going starting today lol. Uhh wish me luck.

My lowest month was in July. It's not really a depressing month, it's just a normal month for me hahaha. My highest was in April, and that can be explained. That was the time I offered a branding package to one of my clients, hence the spike.


In terms of work, my Writing gig still eats majority of the pie by 56.6%. I wrote 172 articles in 2018, that's 294 so far (since 2017!). I don't know how long they intend to keep me in their roster but well, I want to keep writing because this one's stable haha.

On Blogging, I honestly wasn't able to write that much valuable content in 2018. Of the 73 blog posts I published, 26 are sponsored (ie. articles that don't rank but pay), and only 15 are actual personal reviews (ie. articles that matter), the rest are personal drama hahaha.

On Designing, nothing much. Just the usual... logos, invites, shirts, and some other layouts. Something new I learned - creating brand guides and simple graphic design animations. :)

There's a part of me that wants to lay low on accepting work this year so I could rest more and enjoy doing nothing at home when I get back from work. But there are times I still get bored so why not use my free time to earn money lol.

So yeah, here's to another productive year!
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Take Your Fitness Routine to the Next Level in 2019

If you have started the new year with the goal to be fitter and to take your fitness and training to the next level, then where do you start? Of course, you can just carry on doing what you are doing. But when there aren’t any more hours in the day to train for longer, it can really be a struggle. There are several aspects to taking your training to the next level, though, and they aren’t all around the actual exercise that you are doing. There can be training around the physical changes that you should be making, as well as the mental side of things, and what you can be doing at home in preparation. So with all of that in mind, here are some simple practices to help you to make 2019 your year for fitness goals and for getting to where you want to be.

Photo from Pixabay

Eating Plan
It is important to have a meal plan that works for you as part of your fitness regime. A lot of your success with training will come down to how prepared your body was for the exercise, having the energy to do it to the level that you need, as well as how you recover afterwards. Protein is something that is great for recovery, but there are things like supplements that you could be taking pre and post workout, depending on your goals and aims. A site like The Diet Dynamo could shed a little more light on what supplement would be best for your needs, but really, taking some time to research to see what is going to be best for you can help your training a lot. A meal plan that work for you will help to get you to where you want to be, as long as you stick to it, of course.

Photo from Pixabay

Get Outdoors
Training in a gym does have its place, and can really play a part when the weather is pretty dismal. But when you train in a gym it is a really unnatural environment. Take triathlon training, for instance. If you are running on a treadmill it is very unlike what you might experience outside, due to uneven ground and so on. The same for cycling and swimming; the gym versions of those things are nowhere near what it will be like when it comes to the actual event. Being outdoors can offer you other stimulation too as there is more to see, as well as the benefit of fresh air and vitamin D.

Get Enough Sleep
There is no set amount of sleep that is going to work for everyone, simply because different people have different needs and what they can cope with. But as long as you are getting enough sleep for what you need, then that is going to make a big difference. Your body can repair well when it is rested, as well as leaving you with all of the energy that you need to get your training done.
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[Review] Big Skinny Monte Cougar Red Women's Wallet

I don't know what hocus pocus Big Skinny does to its products but true to its claim, it really did slim down my usually bulky wallet! I knew I had to rave about it too because I'm really impressed at the quality of this thing. Nevermind that I didn't like their logo, when I got the item and finally held it in my hands, I'm like "Oh wow this one's a keeper." The fabric is soft and smooth, made of nylon microfiber. And the color is just right, not too red, almost maroon. I love it.


I had so many doubts about this product but all of them got crossed out, as in. I carry more than 20 cards with me and a lot of other miscellaneous paper things like receipts, calling cards, and GCs. I also always carry cash and I keep coins too. This is how my old wallet looks like:


I love this wallet. It has served me for a long time now and I never really thought of replacing it until the zipper broke. And even then I wanted to get the exact same model. It's a black leather Seiko wallet I got on sale more than 2 years ago. To be fair, my old wallet was great. It's not that bulky even when it it's super full, and because of the full body zipper, it doesn't blow up even when I put my phone inside. 

But now that it's showing signs of retirement, I had to look for an exact or even better replacement. And that's when I chanced upon Big Skinny. I can't remember when I first heard of it, I guess it's on Facebook and from the ads too?

Anyway. Their catalog is full of interesting choices, all thin, but not everything is pretty hehe. I wanted to visit their shop at BGC to see how the wallets really look like in person but my excitement got the best of me so I purchased one blindly 'cos I can't wait any longer. The reviews are all good, and the photos look true to life so I'm hoping my judgment would spare me of an expectations vs. reality moment.

And by God, I wasn't disappointed.

Does this comparison matter? Haha

It's so freakishly thin.


It's maroonish, which is okay. The logo looks bearable now, too.


It's so soft to the touch. And being made of nylon microfiber, it's light, smooth, water resistant, and washable too. I was afraid putting multiple cards on the same slot would make it hard for me to fish em out, but nope, not getting stuck.


It has a coin compartment as well. Yeyyy!


So yeah, as soon as I got it I went ahead and switched the contents from my old wallet, making sure to do obligatory shots of before and after, side by side, and so on hahaha. 

Overall I'm so pleased with my Big Skinny!



Want one?
You can purchase yours from Big Skinny PH for ₱2,450. I got mine from Shopee for much less tho!

For more details:
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Hey December!

Last month's challenge was a success. I didn't have a single late for the month of November and it was so rewardiiiiiing having to see no deductions on my payslip. I have decided to build healthier habits this 2019 so to somehow give myself a head start, I challenge myself with something everyday, just to see how far my resolve goes hahaha.

If November was all about not coming late to work, this month's challenge is much harder and requires (at least for me) much more uhm discipline. Unlike No Late November, this challenge requires me to be mindful of the entire day. So guys, with a heavy yet hopeful heart, I'm doing...

NO RICE DECEMBER.... 10 onwards hahaha

I've done this a lot of times but I never kept tabs, so I keep on failing. No Rice December is as simple as it sounds. I'm not totally eliminating carbs, just rice. I've done this before and while the habit never stuck with me, it did come with noticeable results so why not try it again? Yes! I'm doing the challenge at the worst timing possible but it's actually a win-win because you know, I have the Christmas season to blame if I fail! Makes it easier for me to restart next month bwahaha.

This isn't to say I'm free to be late this month, nope. I'm continuing No Late November but I'll stop taking tabs on it, I figured I've logged enough to continue to stick by it even without having to report about it haha.

Also, I'm quitting logging my expenses because there's never really a ceiling to it. Naks anurawww? As long as I don't use up all my allowance I'm good hehe. As for my sleep goals, I've stopped actively monitoring it because I feel hopeless looking at the numbers. I never get enough sleep, as iiiin. If it's not cooking or cleaning the house that's eating my time, it's watching KDrama and finishing my writing backlogs (which I have 2 of right now lol). So yeah, it's always a busy day for me huhu.

So to recap my last week... wow wala pa tayo sa recap hahaha

December 10 to 14
I'm proud to say I survived an entire week without rice. I also added a side-goal of doing at least 100 skips (on a rope, like skip rope? what's the proper term for this haha) everyday in an effort to add a bit of physical activity in my lethally sedentary lifestyle. Since I started, I've moved up to 200 skips a day. Isn't that rewarding?! Hahaha Unfortunately I don't see myself moving to the next level. 200 is probably my max. I can't even do it without resting, I do 20 skips times 10 reps with about a minute of rest in between hahaha wow. such strength.

A major downer for the previous week was arriving late once because it was coding day. AAARGH. I was internally crying at the bus when the clock hit 3:59 and I'm still stuck at Ayala Ave. Hay.

Friday last week a took a leave from work because I miss my parents so much. I went to Fairview to spend time with them and eat dinner, and I also spent the night because Jeckie won't be home 'til morning anyway. I don't think I'll ever get used to not seeing mommy, daddy, and my sister terai. It still makes me feel sad knowing we live in different cities now! If only they could move closer?! Hahaha *wishful thinking*

Soooooo, that's a wrap. Nothing really interesting about my last week haha. Off to writing about childhood trauma and weighted blankets!
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