Attention mommy, if you buy Nido 3+ and 5+ now – you will get a FREE backpack hoodie for your kid! This is bundled with the 1.6kg and 1.2kg packs respectively. My son is now 6 and he drinks Nido 5+ every morning. When I bought this at the supermarket, I did not have to buy another pasalubong because of this freebie, yehey!
The last freebie we received from buying his Nido is the green probiotic tumbler which he still uses up to now. It also fits the new backpack so whoever is thinking of these promos – thank you very much for all the useful Nido items.
The backpack hoodie comes in three designs: fishes, turtles, and humpback whales. According to the Nido 3+ Facebook Page, the backpack hoodies will be available until supplies last.
My son uses this bag on Fridays when they only have the arts and sports subject. It is very timely as well because of the changing weather. Just unzip the top of the bag and your child can use the green hoodie to protect themselves from getting wet. Another important way to keep our kids healthy is to feed them nutritious food including those that are rich in good bacteria.
Nido 5+ already has lactobacillus and I supplement this with Yakult everyday too. Other sources of good bacteria include fresh fruits, vegetables, and if your children can eat pickles, kimchi, etc. My son doesn’t so I stick with Nido, Yakult, and fresh fruits + greens. Good bacteria helps the body fight off the bad bacteria which during the rainy season are easier to acquire because of the wet environment.
So, do keep Nido 5+ on top of your shopping list to score this freebie and keep your child strong & healthy, no matter the weather is!
It was in 1997 that the first Starbucks store opened in the Philippines. My first Starbucks experience was in their Pearl Drive store in Ortigas. I would wait for my older sister, then in college at the University of Asia and the Pacific – just across the coffee shop. Now almost 10 years after, I’ve grown older and have learned many ways to enjoy Starbucks.
Starbucks Bottled Frappuccino now officially in the Philippines
Starbucks listened to their loyal customers and have now made the Starbucks Bottled Frappuccino widely available in the Philippines. The ready-to-drink product will be sold in Starbucks stores, bottled section of supermarkets and select convenience stores across the Philippines.
I just bought mine at Starbucks for P120 in Mocha flavor. As a Starbucks fan, I delight in knowing I can enjoy and uplift my mood with a Starbucks experience in a bottle (and inside my refrigerator) anytime. It’s very refreshing to enjoy during free time or when you just need a break from work or whatever it is you are doing.
From the Starbucks Facebook Page:
Starbucks Frappuccino® Coffee: A perfect blend of Starbucks® Arabica coffee and creamy milk. Inspired by the original Starbucks Coffee Frappuccino®. (₱ 120)
Starbucks Frappuccino® Mocha: A creamy blend of Starbucks® Arabica coffee and temptingly rich cocoa flavor. This pairing brings chocolate lovers to our coffeehouses every day. (₱ 120)
These frappuccinos are best when you chill them for several hours. Currently I have both flavors waiting to be opened for when watching NetFlix, reading a book, listening to music, etc. You will appreciate the twist cap which you can reseal your Starbucks bottled drink with. No spills and easy to bring anywhere!
Starbucks is not all about just coffee and so have introduced ways to enjoy tea as well. Recently, Starbucks launched Teavana which allows Starbucks fans and tea lovers to enjoy handcrafted blends of tea.
The Starbucks Teavana line up includes the English Breakfast, Emperor’s Clouds and Mist, Youthberry and the caffeine free Hibiscus tea. The last one is a perfect choice if you’ve had too much coffee. Of the four blends, I have and regularly enjoy the English Breakfast and the Green Tea (Emperor’s Clouds and Mist).
English Breakfast – A handcrafted blend of Indian Assam, Sri Lankan Ceylon and Chinese black tea. This tastes great with or without milk. P525 for 12 sachets.
Emperor’s Clouds and Mist™ – Exclusively harvested during the month of April and grown on the steep, windy slopes of Huangshan Mountain at 3,500 feet above sea level, this tea has a rich body and a naturally sweet flavor. P525 for 12 sachets.
So I hope you try these new ways to indulge in a Starbucks experience at home. The holiday season is upon us and really, no matter what season it is, it is easy to find ourselves wanting a quick break from all that we do and just sit down, relax, and enjoy a cup of tea.
P.S. These are also nifty Christmas gift ideas or for your holiday gatherings if you want guests to experience Starbucks at your home or in other venues other than Starbucks
One of the signs we are getting old is when more people who are close to us i.e. family and friends start to get sick. What’s worrying is the rate at which people close to us have discovered health conditions that range from moderate to critical illness. Diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, and the most feared of all – cancer.
If you have started worrying about your own and your family’s health, you are not alone. 89% of Filipinos now place high importance to being healthy, 18% up from the previous year. Yes we all want to be healthy and avoid getting sick, mahal magkasakit kaya bawal magkasakit! However, only 58% of us exercise regularly. 46% of us still do not get enough sleep and 41% of eat unhealthy.
There are many reasons why many of us cannot afford to be healthy – time, money, and resources are some. I will not lie, getting fit takes a lot of discipline and sacrifice. If I do not work from home and many of Filipinos don’t, I will also find it extremely difficult to hit the gym thrice a week and prepare healthy meals.
While good diet and exercise will greatly improve our health and well-being, it does not guarantee that healthy people will not get ill.
Be Prepared and Protected with Critical Illness Insurance
Many of us have lost sleep, created different scenarios in our heads, and worry about being diagnosed with a serious health condition. In fact, I believe it is one of the reasons why many of us are afraid to undergo an annual check-up with our doctors.
What will I do if I find out I am sick? What about my family? Where will I get money for treatment? The last question being the hardest to answer for many of us. There is one clear solution to this and that is getting a health insurance.
How many people do you know who have turned to loans, donations, etc. when they or their loved ones got seriously ill? In a very challenging time of sickness, it takes a lot of energy, effort, courage, and gut to pool money to pay for hospital bills. Having health insurance takes off the burden from your family and friends to source money to fund your treatment.
Health insurance protects and provides you with funds upon diagnosis. Some products like the new Sun Fit & Well offers comprehensive coverage from prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation. Depending on your policy, you may even receive income protection i.e. the insurance company will replace your income when you cannot work because of your illness, and daily hospital allowance on top of providing you with a lump sum amount to fund your hospital expenses.
It only takes P1,500 a month
Did you know? For just about P1,500 a month you can have insurance protection from over 100 critical conditions across minor and major stages. If only many of us started to talk more about critical illness insurance then many of us would already have protection and worry less about getting sick. Many of us will not say “bahala na” and feel helpless when we or our loved ones get diagnosed.
I actually talked to a Sun Life financial advisor and expressed my worries about the topic of health. It was then he told me about the new Sun Fit & Well product. I am so thankful to know how affordable it is especially for a family like us.
It was very easy for me to convince my husband to get one for himself. He says, “I agreed to purchase a critical illness insurance because I need medical and health support just in case I acquire a serious illness in the future. Also, this will motivate me to be more fit and healthy.”
Do not be fooled by the wine, we were at an event when we asked our Sun Life Advisor to join us – just to save time and money
As a wife, this was a proud moment for me and I even took a photo of my husband and my financial advisor while they were filling up the Sun Fit & Well application form. Having peace of mind is priceless and now whatever happens, we have a level of protection because we made the right decision. We have a son and I have heard many stories of how children suffer emotionally and financially because of parents getting sick. Kung kaya namin, mas kaya niyo rin!
Our perception of insurance being for the rich only must really change. It is the fact that we might not afford medical expenses that we get protected by insurance products like this. Imagine, if you paid the quarterly fee of about P5,000-P6,000 and you get diagnosed with one of the critical illnesses – you will receive P400,000 from Sun Life. This is just a simple illustration but depending on your health and preference, premiums and benefits can vary.
The best time to be insured is now
Because my husband is 39 years old, his premiums were higher but still affordable at about P1,500 a month. However, he is no longer qualified to benefit from daily hospital allowance unless we get the plan with a higher premium.
If we were a year late and he hit 40, my husband won’t be qualified to get this valuable health insurance. So the best time to be insured was yesterday but in case you are late – act fast before your time is up.
Sun Fit & Well Benefits
On top of insurance protection, the policy holder is also entitled to wellness programs from Sun Life like community workouts, weekly fitness classes, and discounts to health establishments.
I took this photo when our Sun Life Financial Advisor invited me to check out one of the free Go Well programs
This is good news if you are like many of us who cannot afford to enroll in fancy gym classes and fitness programs. Instead of paying for monthly gym membership fees, putting your money in health insurance products like Sun Fit & Well is a bright idea.
At the end of the day, we do not want anyone of us to get sick but when we do – being prepared allows us to focus on getting well and getting back on our feet versus worrying about our health expenses on top of our health conditions.
Financial literacy among Filipinos remain low and only about 1% of us participate in the stock market and/or are protected with some form of insurance. It is only during times of calamities, disasters, death, or illness that many of us start thinking about it. “Sayang, sana may insurance ako”. “Kung meron lang ako o siyang insurance”.
Insurance Commissioner Emmanuel Dooc, FALIA managing Director Toru Nagashima, PLIA President Gregorio Mercado, and FALIA Director Yoshitaka Masai
In fact, the Philippine Life Insurance Association (PLIA) noted that sales of insurance surged after Ondoy and Yolanda. “It is a very steep price to pay to learn the value of insurance,” says Insurance Commissioner, Emmanuel Dooc.
Because Filipinos lack education in terms of Financial Literacy, there is buyer’s remorse and several misconceptions about investing on insurance. There is also a challenge in terms of our persistence to keep our insurance policies. I first heard about insurance through my mother, whom through her hard work has put us all three children to college by herself with the help of insurance.
Watch: Misconceptions about Life Insurance
Spreading Financial Literacy Awareness to the Filipino Youth
We live in an exciting time where there are now several channels to learn about managing our finances. There are online blogs, financial lectures and seminars on YouTube, and even TV programs. My favorites are ANC’s On The Money and Cathy Yang’s Market Edge. For the youth, Knowledge Channel recently launched a new program called “Estudyantipid”. Still, these are resources that will not come to us if we do not seek for them.
In celebration of Life Insurance Consciousness Week, the Philippine Life Insurance Association (PLIA) in partnership with the Foundation for the Advancement of Life Insurance around the World (FALIA) are coming to different public and private high schools and hold a series of lectures for its students .
The lectures will focus on life insurance and answer questions like how does life insurance strengthen the foundation of my family? How will it help me achieve my financial goals? And, how will life insurance contribute to my well-being?
FALIA managing Director Toru Nagashima noted that in Japan, financial literacy courses are included in the students curriculum and has been running for more than 20 years. In the Philippines, financial literacy is not really taught in schools but there are now ongoing programs backed by different financial institutions.
FALIA-PLIA Essay Writing Contest
To encourage even more students to be financially literate, FALIA and PLIA are also hosting an essay writing competition. The top three winners will get to enjoy an all-expenses-paid trip to Japan while runners up will win up to P30,000 in cash.
If your child’s school is not included in this year’s program, you may still check out PLIA’s Financial Education Curriculum for Philippine Secondary Schools. Here you can learn about identifying your financial needs and increase your financial knowledge with your child. Teachers will also find here interactive multimedia materials, curricular toolkit containing sample lesson plans, student activities, and other teaching aids.
Tips on How to Teach Children About Money
FALIA Director Yoshitaka Masai advice parents to teach children about finances as early as 8 or 9 years old. In Japan, he noted that by this age – Japanese children already have a solid idea of what savings and insurance are all about.
Insurance Commissioner Emmanuel Dooc adds that the best way to educate children is by setting a good example. Start them young to develop practice of saving. For instance, part of their allowance must be put to their savings i.e. coin banks. Parents must also show children how to prepare family for any contingency, this means that you do not borrow “utang” and you must know how to use credit cards responsibly. Paying just the minimum amount on your credit card bill means you may not be managing your finances very well.
PLIA President Gregorio Mercado advice parents that when they invest, be careful not to be a victim of scam. Greed turns into loss, be careful of promises of very high returns. Mr. Mercado notes that right now, it is easier to be invested in many ways – not just life insurance but also in mutual funds for as low as P5,000. He reminds everyone that no one is exempted from dying, getting sick, or being a victim of disasters. Having insurance allows us to live with peace of mind and enjoy a quality life.
How do you teach your children about money? Please share your tips via comments below
Tapas and wine are delicious words many of us often hear on lifestyle programs and only read about in travel magazines. But only a few of us really experience. Tapas in Spanish cuisine, are a wide variety of appetizers, or snacks. While the tapas experience are more common to places like Barcelona, us here in the Philippines can enjoy the same (maybe even better) experience without the need to travel far and long.
Wine and Tapas Night at Sofitel Philippine Plaza
As part of the ongoing Wine Days celebration at Sofitel which will run until the end of October, the luxury French hotel presented the Wine and Tapas Night featuring wines from Cadiz, Spain. Rate was Php 2,700 nett per person which is inclusive of free flowing wine from the Gonzales Byass wine collection and a selection of traditional Spanish tapas.
Sofitel Wine Dinner Experience
This must be my third or fourth wine dinner at the Sofitel. It truly is an experience to come out of our comfort zones, dress up, and break bread with new faces every time. There are familiar faces like Sofitel members who have made the hotel an extension of their home and already know the staff and managers by their names. Just like the gentleman we met, a retired composer who is a familiar face at all Sofitel Wine Dinners.
We also shared the table with a couple, both former radio jockeys and from the younger spectrum of the crowd – a couple of De La Salle students who wish to experience and learn more about wine appreciation. It would be interesting to note that in the olden days, tapas was really shared by travelers who might not really know each other. Sharing tapas with new faces make the dinner even more interesting because of all the new stories you will hear.
The Tapas & Wine Menu
A total of 9 kinds of tapas were served. Serving was done one at a time starting with the marinated manchego cheese with olives. Dining format was communal where the tapas are laid out on the middle of the table, intended to be passed around. The format was different to other wine dinners I’ve attended, here one can get as many or as little as you want.
My personal favorites were the croquettes aka croquettas which were very good with a glass of Villarnau Brut. I remembered the name because we were all provided with a wine dinner menu, this was helpful in remembering which wine we liked best – just so we could get more of it from the wine station.
No one had to be a wine expert, in fact we all shared smiles and laughter while figuring out our own favorite pairings of food and wine. We also talked about an app called Vivino which is like a digital cheat sheet to find out which food goes with what kind of wine, wine ratings, and even prices. All the 8 kinds of wine must have helped in relaxing and loosening up everyone.
Other pairings I made mental notes of are the following:
Boquerones (marinated anchovy) and Vinas del Vero Somontano Chardonnay
Sauteed Chorizo with Red Wine and Beronia Rosado
Tio Pepe Do Jerez Xeres Sherry tasted amazing with any food at all. It was my favorite of the night.
There were some food that I am not sure which wine went best with, maybe because I was too focused on eating them like the Mussels with Chorizo and the Seafood and Chicken Paella.
There’s room for dessert
Perhaps the most anticpated item in the menu (at least in our table) was the Spanish Dessert. We were served fresh Churros and it made our Spanish experience even more authentic. At this point of the wine dinner, everyone knew each other and by hand we each casually took one churros each and shared a dipping pot of hot melted chocolate.
This dessert experience makes me recall a travel show that featured Barcelona and how it did end with friends visiting a churros joint, as if all the tapas in the world were not enough.
Overall, the wine dinner proved to be another worthy and unique experience. I appreciate that for a significant fraction of a trip to Barcelona or other places, we can enjoy and learn about the other cultures in the world – including the art of wine appreciation.
The next Sofitel Wine Days activity is on October 16, Soiree a la Belle Etoile: Sofitel’s Full Moon Party. A white party amidst the picturesque landscape featuring free-flowing vintage Strait Wines and an opportunity to view the majestic full moon from a telescope.
When I hit 30, I started to see signs of aging which I know are normal like tired looking eyes, sagging or baggy skin especially in my lower face like I have loose skin, and fine lines and wrinkles.
Even for someone like myself who works out regularly and try to eat healthy, these visible signs of aging are inevitable. We can’t really exercise our skin and make them tighter. I am very happy with the benefits of exercise but when I lost fat in my face, my skin started to sag. Unlike muscles that we can exercise, it would be difficult if not impossible to work out the largest organ in our body – our skin.
For the past few months, I thought I looked tired even though I was not. I wanted my appearance to match the way I feel – young, healthy, and fit. Sometimes I think my sagging skin, cheeks and nasolabial area draw a frown on my face. It is as if loose skin drags the corners of my mouth downwards, making an involuntary frown.
Unlike my friends I am poor at makeup skills and being a mom, don’t really have time to learn and contour, etc. every time I go out. Still I want to look healthy, active, and happy especially for my 6 year old son. My dermatologist, Dra. Kaycee Reyes of Luminisce Skin Clinic introduced me to ThermiTight which is a single treatment/procedure that produce long term results.
WATCH How ThermiTight works:
During my consult, Dra. Kaycee Reyes explained how ThermiTight is a non-surgical and minimally invasive procedure that is best for patients like me who want long term results but not go under the knife. It is a 100% pain-free procedure without down time meaning you can resume your daily activities right after (except heavy exercise of course).
Photo credit: Luminisce Facebook Page
I am a regular patient at Luminisce and remember how Dra. Kaycee Reyes trained with renowned Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Brian Kinney for this procedure. Note that not all doctors can acquire and perform a ThermiTight procedure, they need to be trained and licensed by Thermi – the company who created the ThermiRF machine which is used for the procedure.
My ThermiTight Experience
The day finally came when I will undergo ThermiTight. We agreed to start early at 9AM since the line-up of patient procedures, non-surgical and surgical were quiet long at Luminisce. The nurses took my Before photos first, I came without anything on my face which was a good idea.
Next step was having my face sterilized with Iodine solution up to the chest area. This is to prevent any form of infection. Even if ThermiTight isn’t surgical, the procedure was done in Luminisce’s new Operating Room. It looked serious and nurses plus Doc Kaycee are very strict about sterilization which made me feel very safe.
When I was finally ready, Doc Kaycee came in and administered local anesthecia. I am not afraid of injections and for me, it felt like any ordinary vaccination. I appreciated how Doc Kaycee was very friendly and compassionate throughout the ThermiTight procedure. She explained every step and updated me on where we are with the procedure, if she was inserting a tiny probe, removing it, finishing or starting on an area. The only thing I felt during the procedure was some pressure on my face as the tiny probe moved around under my skin. At first I was afraid it would hurt because I read on another blog, done in another clinic – how it hurt BUT thankfully, that didn’t happen to me. In fact, I was smiling throughout the procedure sometimes I get so relaxed I almost fall asleep but I am embarrassed to sleep while the hardworking doctor performs ThermiTight.
The procedure itself took just an hour, I was asked to sit-up a few minutes thereafter and transfer to another room for endermology. It’s like a massage for your face to reduce swelling which was very relaxing. Then, the nurse gave me a head dress or head bandage which will help reduce and relieve any form of swelling.
I wore the head bandage 24/7 for 2 weeks because I want to get the best results. Other patients only wear it at night which is also okay.
Swelling from thermitight lasts for 2 weeks and results will start to show on the 4th week. When I arrived home, my face was swollen but after 4 hours the swelling was greatly reduced. I drank lots of water like Dra. Kaycee advised and it did really help.
I was prescribed pain medicine in case I feel pain but I didn’t really feel anything. I just relaxed and worked as usual for those 2 weeks.
ThermiTight Results: Before & After Photos
If you ask me if I will undergo ThermiTight again, I will give you a BIG yes! The photos don’t do enough justice, I hope I can really share how I feel through writing but 3 weeks after ThermiTight – It’s like I went back in time and met my face 10-15 years ago. My husband says I look like her daughter nowadays!
I can confidently and honestly say that my skin and face look significantly refreshed, my tired look has gone, and the lines that my younger sister used to point out (under my eyes, mid-face, lower face) have disappeared. I don’t see any signs of my sagging skin and everything just feels — tight and toned.
It’s amazing how ThermiTight can give all these results in just an hour and I don’t need to go back to any more sessions. It’s a one-time thing whose results would probably stay for 3-5 years or, as the normal ageing occurs.
BEFORE Thermitight selfie with my son (1 month ago):
I was a happy mommy but now, I am even happier because I feel like I have taken care of myself and it shows. I would let these before & after photos speak for themselves.
After ThermiTight selfie with my son (taken yesterday, same camera phone):
After ThermiTight, I feel more confident letting my hair down. Before, I like putting my hair up to avoid framing my face but now, my confidence has improved and I am comfortable with anything at all
I feel young and look forward to more years and memorable, happy moments with my son
Getting ThermiTight at Luminisce Skin Clinic was definitely a right decision for me, I will do it again if I have to. The technology is really innovative, non-invasive, and absolutely pain free. I have recommended it to fellow moms to do it for no one else but for themselves to look & feel great inside and out.
I only had my lower face done and if budget permits, I would consider getting my entire face done. Cost of thermitight varies per patient and the degree of ageing or skin damage. Do send an inquiry to Luminisce on Facebook for more information and to schedule a consult with Dra. Kaycee Reyes