Miss Universe Candidates Make Personalized Chucks for Charity 

Everyone’s excited about Miss Universe 2017. Pageant enthusiast or not, we have to admit that we are looking forward to seeing who gets to be the best in long gown, best in swimsuit, best in talent, best in Q&A. The competition not only declares the most beautiful; it also displays confidence, wit, talent and creativity. 

As part of displaying the candidates’ creativity, 19 candidates lent their time and talents by participating in producing customized Converse sneakers. These customized pairs of shoes are to be auctioned for the Positive Auction Foundation. This is a foundation supported by the Miss Universe organization which is devoted into helping individuals living with HIV/AIDS and their families, particularly those who are displaced from their employment due to the HIV phenomenon.
The candidates who participated are: 

  • Ms. Angola – Luisa Baptista
  • Ms. Belgium – Stephanie Goldof
  • Ms. Belize – Rebecca Rath
  • Ms. Brazil – Raissa Santana
  • Ms. Bulgaria – Violina Ancheva
  • Ms. Cayman Islands – Monyque Brooks
  • Ms. Costa Rica – Carolina Duran
  • Ms. Germany – Johanna Acs
  • Ms. Guatemala – Virginia Argueta
  • Ms. Iceland – Hildur Maria
  • Ms. Mexico – Kristal Silva
  • Ms. Netherlands – Zoey Ivory
  • Ms. Nicaragua – Marina Jacoby
  • Ms. Panama – Keity Drenan
  • Ms. Paraguay – Andrea Melgarejo
  • Ms. Philippines – Maxine Medina
  • Ms. Russia – Yuliana Korolkova
  • Ms. Thailand – Chalita Suansane
  • Ms. Uruguay – Magdalena Cohendent

    Miss Angola

    Miss Belgium
    Miss BelizeMiss BrazilMiss BulgariaMiss Cayman IslandsMiss Costa Rica

    Miss Germany

    Miss Guatemala
    Miss IcelandMiss MexicoMiss NetherlandsMiss NicaraguaMiss Panama
    Miss Paraguay
    Miss PhilippinesMiss RussiaMiss ThailandMiss Uruguay

    A silent bid auction will be held for beauty pageant patrons and Chucks collectors to get the chance to own these personalized chucks. Bidders may submit their bids, names and contact details through the information officer in the mall exhibit of the shoes or through a private message at the Converse Facebook page. Starting bid for all pairs is at 50USD.

    The personalized pairs may be seen at the exhibits in the following dates and venues:

    • February 3-5: Robinsons Antipolo
    • February 10-12: Robinsons Bulacan and Marquee Pampanga
    • February 17-19: Robinsons Isabela and Robinsons Ilocos Norte
    • February 24-26: Robinsons Tacloban and Robinsons Cebu
    • March 3-5: Gaisano Mall of Davao City and Gaisano Mall of Digos
    • March 10-12: Gaisano Mall of Tagum and Gaisano Mall of Toril
    • March 17-19: Gaisano Mall of General Santos

    Which one’s your fave? I already have my top 3 picks and being a fan of pageants, auctions and Chucks I’m also thinking of joining the bid myself. 

    Stay tuned on Converse’s Facebook page for more of #ConversePHx65MissUniverse.

    Üprint by Reggie: Your One-Stop Shop for Your Printing Needs

    I love hosting events. When I was younger, I hosted events for fun and for well..money. Teehee. I love planning.. Doing details and stuff. It is a venue for me to exercise my oc-ness, if you know what I mean. 😀

    Last December, my family hosted our annual family reunion. Of course we had to do the brainstorming before the event. It was fun, a little stressful, but I’d like to believe it was a success. 

    Part of the planning was thinking of a souvenir. We have to have something to remember the event. It was a family reunion, after all. 

    I came accross Üprint by Reggie while looking for ref magnets on instagram for a friend. Her friend was getting married and they were specifically looking for ref magnets as giveaways. I inquired and got the answers that I needed, and reported back to my friend. 

    Then my niece celebrated her birthday last year. Being the bibo kid that I am, I told my sister-in-law about the shop and she liked the idea of giving ref magnets as giveaways. She ordered from the shop and I was told they had a smooth transaction.

    Then came the reunion. It was my turn to think of a giveaway. Because my sis in law didn’t have a problem ordering from them, I suggested ref magnets to my sibs and they went for it. 🙂 

    Ref magnets start at 15php, individually packed with resealable plastic and paper backing. If with pillow box and or  accents, cost would be 25-30php.

    Üprint by Reggie respects your own creativity and design.
    Yep. I am proud to be a Dayrit!

    The only problem that we had was the holiday rush. I ordered the magnets last December (our reunion was Dec 30th) so it was a really busy month. I kind of gave them short notice.. Like I only sent them the design days before the reunion. Also, we mostly communicated through facebook messenger and I think it would have been better if we talked through sms instead because sometimes she wasn’t online when I was, and vice versa. Aside from that, finding a courier was a problem, too. Using LBC or other trusted couriers will not guarantee getting the products on time. Thankfully, there is an  express service such as Grab Express. We went with it, as suggested by Üprint. We paid 219php for the delivery fee.

    I can recommend getting them as a supplier because they were easy to talk to. They didn’t even put “rush fee” and they happily accepted my order even if I gave them such short notice.

    Aside from ref magnets, Üprint by Reggie also make customized mugs, business cards, notepads – basically anything with prints.

    You may view their works in instagram and facebook.

    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/uprintbyreggie/

    Facebook: Reggie Gaile Rosales-Catacutan (they recommend contacting them here for faster transaction)

    A Road Trip Kind of Anniversary: Bataan, Subic and Clark

    Last December 7th, Hans and I celebrated our fourth anniversary. Just like that, we’re on our fourth year! 

    Four years. Wow. I know what some of you may say we’ve got a long way to go. And we do have more to learn. So much more to experience. So much to understand. 

    But to still be married and in love with each other at this day and age for 4 years (we’ve been in a relationship for 7 years now- 3 years as bf/gf, 4 years as a married couple) is only through God’s grace. 

    I meant to do this post earlier but December was a very busy month for me (for all of us, I assume?), hence the late post. Nevertheless, here’s how the three of us – yep, Seth included- celebrated our special day. ❤

    It was a beautiful day. What made it more beautiful was it was my rest day (suprisingly, and I believe it was God because I didn’t request for that day to be my off). Hans and I didn’t plan anything because we didn’t know my schedule yet plus no one would be left to take care of Seth. So when we woke up and greeted each other (which Hans did better btw, he woke me up at 12 midnight to kiss and greet me) we both decided to do a road trip and just go somewhere near.

    So we both did our research: we live in the countryside (Central Luzon) so South would be too far. Hans said,”let’s go to Bataan!”. I of course seconded right away because anywhere with him is already a treat, going somewhere else is cherry on top (can I get an ‘awwww’, please? :p). 

    Yep. Unplanned road trips are the best. 

    At SCTEX, my favorite expressway in the PH to date.

    One thing about Hans and I is that we both love history. We love going to museums, doing long walks (maybe that’s just me lol) and long talks (oops that’s me again). 

    So first stop: Mount Samat National Shrine.

    My boys being..well, boys.

    Mount Samat National Shrine (Dambana ng Kagitingan) is located near the Summit of Mount Samat in Pilar, Bataan, Philippines. It was built to honor and commemmorate the Filipino soldiers who fought during World War II.

    Reminders while inside the museum

    Museums have this particular effect on people: they take you to where they want to take you. At Mt. Samat Museum, I was taken back to war time. I felt chills (literally), and Filipino pride. It was an awesome moment and I was glad I got to share it with my boys.

    Outside the museum is a cross where you can go to through a lift. Unfortunately, when we visited, the lift was under maintenance so we weren’t able to use it. We attempted to climb going to the cross but because Hans and I are both afraid of heights, we climbed only until we can, and took a picture there. 

    Oops.. Can’t go higher than that. Haha.
    Feeling carefree with my mini me!
    ❤❤❤

    But of course. A twofie with the hubby is a must!

    There are also shops around the shrine, as well as a field. Entrance fee to the shrine is 20php/person. It is open from 8am-5pm daily. 

    We arrived at the shrine around 11am so after our tour we were already hungry. Time for lunch!

    Next stop: Loleng’s Hu Tieu-an

    We used Waze throughout our trip. We had a little difficulty finding Loleng’s (although it can be found in Waze) because the streets were a little narrow plus there was a construction nearby. 

    But we found it! Yey!

    We learned about this place from Byahe ni Drew. Loleng’s Hu Tieu-an is located in Barangay Binaritan in Morong, Bataan. According to the television show, Loleng’s Hu Tieu-an is a humble roadside eatery run by a Filipina who used to work in a refugee camp. It has been delighting people with Vietnamese noodles for over 15 years.  

    Loleng used to work at the Philippine Refugee Processing Center (PRPC), where she learned to cook Vietnamese dishes. Her specialties are Hu Tieu, a savory noodle soup and Banh Mi, a traditional Vietnamese sandwich with meat and fresh basil. You may read more about Loleng’s Hu Tieu-An here.

    I ordered Hu Tieu, which they sell for only 50php!

    Aside from the Hu Tieu, I also ordered Banh Mi, which they sell for 35php. They used traditional Filipino buns instead of the French buns. It is good for sharing.
    I can’t really remember this, my apologies! It’s a salad with vegetables and meat, and it was good too!

    Aside from Vietnamese dishes, Loleng’s also serve Filipino dishes like Lomi, Pinoy-style spaghetti, shanghai, and pancit palabok. I tried ordering pancit but I was told they only come in big sizes (bilao) and that it would take a long time, so I just ordered spaghetti for the little one.

    Loleng’s Hu Tieu-an is open from 7am am to 9am, everyday.

    After Loleng’s, we also stopped by Subic Bay (near the Subic Bay Airport), and we just gazed at the beach. It was beautiful. We also did a stopover at Puregold Subic, where we bought Seth’s favorite “teddy bear cookies”.

    Last stop: Clark Picnic Grounds

    Nothing beats watching sunset to end the day! We stopped by Clark Picnic Grounds for a while to watch the very beautiful (albeit fast) sunset that day. We were able to catch the sunset but only for a short time because it started to drizzle. 

    That’s it! That was the most inexpensive, spontaneous anniversary celebration we’ve experienced. It wasn’t that extravagant, it wasn’t fancy.. But it was how we both wanted it to be: memorable, historical, and beautiful, like how anniversary celebrations should be.

    How do you usually spend your anniversary? Would love to hear your thoughts and experiences. Feel free to share! 

    On Days When I Just Lose It.

    There are days when I just lose it.

    I was from a 24 hour shift the other day (whaddup, nurses!) and I was really, really exhausted. The husband fetched me from work and brought me home, changed his clothes and went straight to church. I intended to attend the afternoon service with Seth because well, I was sooooooo tired.

    Seth and I were left at home. I never had any problems with Seth whenever I need to sleep. I would just tell him, “baby, mama needs to sleep okay? Don’t play or talk with mama”. Then he’d say okay and eventually, if it is a good day, he will sleep. But because Seth is in his terrific twos and is doing the exact opposite of what I asked him to do, and because a toddler is so full of surprises, he disregarded what I said and just played and played and played. He did let me sleep but he watched The Lorax (his fave movie now; he’s done with The Diary of A Wimpy Kid and Harry Potter), with the volume too high it could pass as Dolby Digital Surround if we were a movie house. So I slept intermittently, waking up every now and then.

    I was already becoming cranky and I was starting to get upset with the hubby. It was 11 o’clock and he wasn’t home yet (church usually ends at 10). I.WANTED.TO.SLEEP.SO.BAD!!! Seth was becoming his usual clingy self, mouthing “mama, mama” when he wanted (and not as needed!). He was following me wherever I went and the once cute clingy man turned into a monster. He was shouting and was just really cranky.

    And then he started crying. I forgot how and why his tantrums started (sometimes it’s best to just stop rationalizing things when you’re a mom), but it did start. Usually his tantrums start when he’s already very sleepy. And this wasn’t just an ordinary tantrum. This was one hell of a tantrum. He started throwing things on the floor. This was what rang the bell in my head – ting ting ting ting!!!!! I was already furious.

    And then I did it: I spanked Seth – in his cute little butt.

    You see, I don’t believe in spanking. I have nothing against those who do. In fact, I have high respect for them. But spanking just isn’t my style. It is, actually, my husband’s. But it isn’t me. Probably because I never experienced being spanked and I turned out okay (thank God!). And also because I am a nurse and I believe in the psychological way of dealing with kids.

    So imagine how uneasy it was for me to spank him. It wasn’t a cute spank. It was a painful one- I can tell by the sound. So Seth started to spank me too (the inevitable part when you spank a kid- they end up using violence on you). Then he started throwing his toys at me.

    I threw one of his favorite toys: a green bucket (his favorite color) where we keep his shapes (his favorite thing). I threw it so hard that I ended up breaking the bucket. It was made of plastic, and we’ve thrown it a couple of times already. But that particular throw was the mother of all throws. It was too painful to watch, even for me, who did it intentionally.

    Then he began to scream and said, “mama, what did you do? You broke it!!!! Say sorry to the bucket, mama!” He was still crying and I can see that he was really hurt. He hugged me and asked, “mama, why’d you throw it? Why’d you break it?”.

    And then I started to cry. The once fierce mama broke down, and cried too. I hugged Seth as tight as I could.

    “I’m sorry, mama.”

    “No, no, don’t say sorry, baby. It wasn’t your fault. It was mama’s fault.”

    I have always been a toughie when it comes to Seth. I can take it when he cries or when he throws tantrums. I can ignore him as long as possible until he folds. I am good in that department.

    But this time it was different.

    I explained to him the reason why I did that, and that he should listen to mama or dada all the time. I couldn’t stop crying and neither could he. It was a funny thing, actually, but at the same time, a very emotional moment for me (I am still moved to tears as I type this!). I hurt the one person who adored me more than anything else in the world. Then he hugged me and said sorry again. I kissed him and asked him where his booboo was, and he pointed his butt, which I blew and kissed. Then he asked me the same, kissed me where he spanked me – my back, my forehead, my face (he spanked me a lot of times!).

    It really takes a tough woman to be a mother. It takes a tougher woman to be the mommy of a 2 year old.

    Sometimes when we are very tired, motherhood can take a hold in us. We feel tired and overwhelmed at times. There are days when I feel like I really needed a break from all the mommy chores that I do. And there are days that I just need to be quiet and not do anything, just because. And it’s okay. It’s normal. And we should take a break once in a while.

    Toddlerhood is a test of patience, for me, most especially. There are days when I think I know what I am doing, and I believe I am doing a good job. And then there are days when I just lose it. There are days when I just want to break down and cry.

    I put Seth to sleep (finally! It was already nap time when all our drama ended). I kissed him and whispered another “mama is very sorry”. I promised myself that I would buy Seth a new toy. And then I prayed. I told myself that I would never, ever, let my exhaustion get in the way of disciplining my child. And then I told God that I’m really, really tired. He’s with me in this battle, after all.

    Do you not know? Have you not heard?
    The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth.
    He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom.
    He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.
    Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall;
    31 but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.
    They will soar on wings like eagles;
    they will run and not grow weary,
    they will walk and not be faint.

    Isaiah 40:28-31

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    Our words and actions live in our child forever.

    Acting Quickly vs Acting Wisely

    Disclaimer: This is a very late post. Meant to post this before Halloween, but, Mommyhood happened. Lol.

    It was a happy day. I was on rest day, and the hubby and I decided to bring Seth to the mall. We haven’t spent much time together since I started working again (woot woot!!), and we’ve been looking forward to being together and just eating Jollibee. ❤ If you’re from the Philippines you can relate- Jollibee is happines to kids and to us kids at heart. ❤

    Seth loves going to the mall especially now because Christmas is just around the corner. In the Philippines we start decorating in September. Christmas songs are everywhere! Lights are everywhere too. So whenever we’d go to the mall Seth would drag me to the ‘Christmas area’, where there are trees, lights and other Christmasy stuff. It is also nearing October, which meant scary stuff are everywhere in the mall as well. We don’t do Halloween like the Western people do, but there are still costumes everywhere.

    After roaming around the Christmas decors, Seth and I went back to the mall entrance to meet the hubby. The entrance was filled with Halloween masks of all sorts, costumes, and the like. There was a man, around 50s, who was wearing a mask, just standing there, scaring the passers-by. We didn’t really give him attention because Seth was also excited looking at the scary stuff. But apparently this man was looking for attention. We were looking at the spiders and masks when the man wearing the mask touched Seth in the arm. It all happened so quickly; I wasn’t looking because I was showing Seth the spiders. Seth was so scared (I was carrying him), he cried and wanted us to go home. He was saying, “dada, drive the car! Let’s go home!” repeatedly because he was really very scared!

    I didn’t pay that much attention to the man, but he quickly removed the mask and laughed. I did smile at him to show that it was okay. Then I focused on Seth, and so did his dad. We were telling him that it’s okay, it was just a mask and that the man was just fooling around. I even tried to wear a mask to show him that it was just something people (bored ones to be exact) wear to scare someone. Of course he wasn’t hearing me, he was too scared!

    The man acted as if nothing happened. He didn’t even say sorry, he just walked away and wore another mask! Part of me wanted to go to him and ask him if he was happy he got to scare a little boy. But I didn’t. 

    We left the mall, and then went outside. I was still upset and I felt like I didn’t avenge my son. I was also upset at Hans because he didn’t do anything either. I was thinking what I should have said to the man that would make him think about the seriousness of what he did (he was older than me, might I reiterate on that!). 

    When we went home, I can’t move on from what happened to Seth. I was thinking if I did the right thing – not talking to the man and giving me a piece of me (you don’t mess with a tired mom of a toddler!). Of course I knew I did the right thing but I was still furious at him! I prayed and asked the Lord to give me peace. 

    The next morning I came across Peter’s story. When Jesus was being arrested, Peter acted on impulse. He was upset and he cut part of the soldier’s ear on purpose because he acted quickly rather than wisely. And I am so guilty of that! My mom would always tell I react so fast- and that I am always easily angered. I always act on impulse. I refuse to count from 1-10 when something annoying happens because I want to be heard (my feelings demand attention. Lol). 

    How often do we act on impulse? How often do we answer back to people who shout at us during traffic to defend ourselves? How often do we get mad at the fastfood cashier because our order is taking a long time? How often do we fight people just because we disagree with their opinion?

    And when Peter did what he wanted to do, quickly, Jesus rebuked him. 

    I am humbled. I wanted to teach Seth a valuable lesson of standing up for himself but I was taught and reminded to stand up for Christ instead.

    Until now, whenever I’d tell Seth that we’d go to the mall, Seth says, “but mama, I’m scared of the man!”. I’d tell him Halloween is already finished, there is no more man, and that there is no reason for him to be scared anymore. Now the dialogue would be, “mama, finished Halloween? No more man?”. I still feel bad because of the incident but I feel even bad not for Seth but for the man, because he had to scare people (kids especially!) to be noticed. And I am grateful I was able to minister to him in some way.

    Acting on impulse is one huge thing. Waiting to act on something is another. I thank the Lord for opportunities like that where I can practice patience and self-control. ❤ It wasn’t easy; we are just humans, after all. But we can, because He can. ❤