Three Day Prompt in a Post For July FMS Photo A Day

I decided to make a single post for the three day prompts as I do not want to flood your inbox, my subscribers. I also want to keep this short but as interesting as it can be.

For July 2, the prompt is Furry. And the hashtag to use for this is #FMS_furry, in case you are doing it via Instagram. This particular photo of Roey holding new furry friends was taken at the Enchanted Kingdom in Sta. Rosa, Laguna. She was terrified as the Wheel of Life reached its peak, especially when it stopped to load and unload people. She eventually got used to that fear until she conquered it.

July 3, Hot #FMS_hot

It was our first time to visit this church at Mexico, Pampanga. It still has its “old look” that made it really look perfect for a lot of shot. Used my daughter’s phone, Oppo A71 in this particular shot. It was truly hot at that time we were there, summer eh?!

July 4, Heart #FMS_heart

Sometime ago, just before Mother’s Day here in the Philippines, I sent this photo of me and my daughter K to a “campaign” of a well-known milk brand. We got included in the long list of Mother and kids’ photo line up. What surprised our hearts is that all the entries that got in were displayed in a few digital billboards located in different malls. Made K, me and our family happy.

July FMS Photo A Day

I have made a promise to myself that I’ll make sure to complete all of this year’s FMS Photo A Day prompt in my Instagram account, but come June, I failed already. I only got to the 6th, and it was so late even. Now, I am again late for the first 3 prompts but let me try to catch up and this time, I’ll also use this blog to post my entries.

For those who has Instagram accounts, who wants to unleash their creativity and wants to join in the fun, join us! Here is July’s prompt list along with the corresponding hashtags to use.

And here is my entry for the July 1 prompt, lonely. Roey as a firefly (correct me if I am wrong, she is either a firefly or dragonfly in this costume), and yes, an old photo. She was upset and lonely as this was her third costume at that time of the shoot. We all know that babies get easily irritated and she was obviously uncomfortable already. Sorry my little darling.

You see, with FMS Photo A Day you can share an old image you have been keeping or click the camera for new ones. Just as long as you share your OWN photo, no problem with that. Also, you have the freedom to post wherever you want, on your blog, Instagram or on your personal Facebook account. So, I hope you got some inspiration in here to join the FMS Photo A Day Community. Have fun everyone!

 

Tips On How To Be Cyber Secured

We always hear experts say that in today’s cyber-age, it is NOT always enough to just simply review your privacy settings every three months and create a strong password. Why? Simply because these cyber criminals do that too – they are wiser in being able to obtain data from people. So, aside from being vigilant, here are few more tips on how to be secured while being active online.

  • Never post any identification numbers and travel documents as we would not want to end up victims of identity theft.
  • Do not give away home, school and office addresses that may cause security harm.
  • Avoid sharing or posting eye-catching pictures of your properties and rich possessions.
  • Do not divulge information to people you only met online.
  • Refrain from sharing your exact location.
  • Set your social media account posts (as much as possible) to either private or friends only.
  • Deactivate the social media accounts you are not using.
  • Protect your password resets. You can turn on the feature where you are required to enter a personal information to successfully reset the password.
  • Do not underestimate how much your browser’s cache knows about you, clear it often.
  • Lastly, add two-factor verification. This is available for you to set up in most online accounts now.

My Instagram account has been hacked recently. My account has been used to like and follow people I do not know. I was looking for a particular image I have liked in the past and that is when I found out about it – I saw likes that I can’t even recall to have made. I had to change my password immediately and turned on the two-factor verification feature. When someone else tries to login to my Instagram account  this time, a 6 digit code has to be entered. Who else has the code but me only, because it will be sent to my mobile number. My Instagram profile being hacked somehow scared me and I also kind of felt angry and dismayed. I had to unlike a lot of images and videos – I’m not done yet actually, really upsetting.

I do hope that these tips would help you all. It is also best to refrain by being too excited in using and sharing but take time to also explore and learn more about the applications we are using. Be safe online every time, everyone!

Janine Berdin; A Genuine Star of this Generation

Young and talented Janine Berdin is a semi-finalist for the 4th quarter of Tawag Ng Tanghalan in It’s Showtime. She instantly got my attention and admiration the first time I saw and heard her sang during the daily round. Her talent and X factor made me say: “this girl will make it to the semis and even to the finals.” I even got the same feeling I had when I saw Sarah Geronimo, Charice Pempengco (now Jake Zyrus) and KZ Tandingan perform years ago in their respective singing contest performances. Janine Berdin will definitely go a long way. It is evident as all her performances get standing ovation from the judges, gives viewers the goosebumps and make us teary-eyed, clap and exclaim “hanep, ang galing!”

Besides all the praises she get every after her performances, Janine remains kid-like and humble. I saw her Facebook account and started following her even before the semis and found out that she is actively mingling with fans and keeps them, us updated via Facebook Live too. I once commented while she’s doing FB Live and she actually read my message. I decided to send another message/comment few minutes before she ended the video and she once again got to read it. The last comment was actually for my daughter Keanna, they are born the same year. So, Keanna was all smiles when the Janine Berdin greeted her as she end her live update.

If you have not seen her performances in YouTube, let me share it here. These are the ones I consider my favorites of her performances since she joined Tawag ng Tanghalan. I only have 4 videos here but who knows, her performance today might be included in my fave list.

‘MAGASIN’, her first performance at the show:

Janine rocked the stage with her rendition of Eraserheads’ ‘Ang Huling El Bimbo’ for Semis Day 3 (Awit ni Idol theme):

Her Semis Day 4 got a standing ovation from the judges with her rendition of Yano’s ‘Banal Na Aso'(Judges pick theme):

Semis Day 5 performance was Kamikazee’s ‘Narda'(OPM theme), this has left Ogie Alcasid teary-eyed:

With her awesome and obvious talent, Janine Berdin is indeed a genuine talent in this generation. She has made her mark in the industry already, even if she has not won yet. Her talent is just oozing and it is as if it keeps on growing every time she performs. I really wish she make it to the finals. We are voting for her, actually. Go girl!

Mother and Daughter; Plus The Best Friendship in Between

Mama was a widow at her early forties. I was only seven then and being an only child, I think I made the initiative to mature a little faster as Mama raised me single-handedly. I have seen how she has mastered multi-tasking and positivism even it was really hard. She was prayerful, warm-hearted and friendly. Her energy is so beautiful – enough to gain customers that turned into friends who brought few more customers. I grew up selling different kinds of what Filipinos call merienda – banana-que, turon, lumpia, kamote fries, kikiam, fish balls, squid balls, pancit Bato and the famous halo-halo. Mama was a sewer and beautician too. She has too much in her hands but never short of being a mother and friend to me at the same time. 

When she sent me to her mother and sister’s care in Buhi, Camarines Sur, our love for each other deepened. We would exchange mails on ordinary days and special occasions. She would take me with her to our home in Quezon City during summer vacation and she would visit the province during my birthdays and Christmas too. That was our arrangement for three years during my primary school years. She took me back in when I was in 6th grade. That was the only time I asked her (without any regret) why she had to live alone. Her answer made me love her more. It was a sacrifice she bravely faced. Within those years, she has faced failure on her own – I was away to hug her and assure that it is okay and she can try again. Mama was suppose to work overseas (in Hong Kong) but it did not push through for many reasons even after her long wait. She was only able to work overseas when I was already in sophomore year in high school. Her sister who took care of me then came to live with me here in the metro. We were afar from each other for another three years. It was harder but the same years made our mother and daughter relationship stronger.

Our friendship became a hit when she arrived home, I was already in my first year in college. A number of my friends expressed their admiration of how sheis to me as a mother and best friend at the same time. She was even a confidant to some of my friends. Our relationship has evolved many times but it always end up better. Life trials – health-wise, finances, first heartache, college woes and part time job mishaps, made us love and support each other many notch higher. We have grown to respect and condone each other’s shortcomings. I can say that my failures and heartaches did not leave me deep scars because of her positive attitude towards life. She has showered me with great advises and has passed on me optimism, independence and sense of humor. This exactly is why my dedication to my daughters is a lot like hers, she is my role model after all.

                

Mama passed away two months after my younger daughter turned one. Our struggle during her sickness was not at all easy but her heart stopped beating right beside me with a smile in her lips. That was the most hurtful emotion I have felt but it seemed like I can not express it – I had to be stable and strong.

My elder daughter has a lot of memories and stories about Mama. She would normally tell stories to her sister, including the lessons she learned from her grandMama. Now that she is gone, as I watch my kids grow, I have come to discover what she would tell me when I was being stubborn during my younger years — that I will know the feeling when I become a mother myself. True enough, it is difficult for a mother to let go or just let loose the invisible string our children are attached to our heart. Letting go is definitely a hard phase to go through. But I am sure that Mama’s most important though challenging role (her favorite) is being a grandmother. She once told me that my daughters are like my substitute – she instantly became a new mother again. She enjoyed learning new things as she face that new role in this generation. The fact the we were hand-in-hand in both our roles made it more valuable and happier. If we can call and talk to her now in heaven, she would happily express that she would not trade that for any other role. We may have let go of her presence but she is in our hearts forever. My daughters brought so much unexplained joy in our life and I am so glad that Mama experienced that too. It is her birth anniversary today, so, we are sending her our love and many thank yous.

May 2018 FMS Photo A Day Challenge Prompt

I have once shared here that I got featured by Little Moments App on their Instagram account as part of the FMS Photo A Day Fab Four, March 14: Clouds prompt. Now, I am sharing the FatMumSlim’s prompt list for May 2018.

Got the image from FatMumSlim’s website. I’m quite excited to share my photos for this month as May brings a lot of memories to me, be it good and the not-so-good ones. May is both my parents’ birth month. Since they are both gone now, we only get to celebrate it by simply offering prayers, candles and flowers. It is also the month of “fiestas” that I really look forward to when I was a child. May 1st is the feast of St. Joseph the Worker and this is celebrated in “Royal” (Barangay Apolonio Samson), where I spent most of my childhood and teenage years. It is a chance for cousins and other relatives to get together and chit-chat over good food. May is also the month where in Buhi (Camarines Sur) town celebrates their fiesta. Buhi is my Mom’s provincial hometown where I studied 3 years of grade school. A number of beautiful cousins also celebrate their birthdays this month. Indeed a lot of celebrating to do, right? Great number of chances to capture a lot of photos that can be shared in Instagram – and include in the Photo A Day challenge.

Join us too and challenge yourself in bringing out creatives juices in you – and photography skills that you may already have but has yet to discover. The hashtags to use for these prompts are also posted in my Instagram account, @stef0930.

Daughter’s Love of Arts and BTS

My daughter K, @heyitskea on Instagram, installed AutoDesk Sketchbook and made herself busy with a few small artworks.

           

This one below took her a week if I’m not mistaken. She is a fan of BTS (Bangtan Sonyeondan or Bulletproof Boy Scouts), specifically Kim Taehyung a.k.a. V. She must have thought of challenging herself to try a little more complicated image, thus chose this one. I just had to take a screenshot of both the reference and her accomplishment. Along the way, she got worried saying she can not do the teeth and hair parts as they seem too difficult. There was even an outline at first, but I had to ask her try without it instead to add to the already significant difficulty.

Also, I had to tell her that it is indeed difficult as she is obviously a beginner. It will go easy along the way. The “keep trying” and “never give up” advises worked for her. This was a chance for me to remind our daughter that “All things are difficult before they become easy.” And nothing will ever be accomplished if you just keep telling yourself that the situation or task is hard, you gotta face that fear, start and keep going to achieve success.

She posted her finished artworks in her Instagram account @heyitskea_. As a Mom, I can not help but be proud of her.  Oh! By the way, she made this using her mobile phone, no stylus used, just her bare fingers. With the satisfied look on her face after posting her “Taehyung” artwork, I know that she will be creating a few more, more of BTS. She has received email messages and direct messages too expressing their admiration of her works.

Her love of drawing and designing has made her decide to take Arts and Design Track, Visual Arts strand in Senior High. She even has another mobile phone app installed called Design Home (Crowdstar Inc) and I guess it helps her learn more about interior designing and sharpen her skills too. She has not completely decided yet if she will push for Architecture or Interior Design in college, and it may still change as she face the fun and challenges of senior high. For us her parents, she has our support and guidance – to anything that would make her happy and give her the feeling of fulfillment – all the way.

 

Calel’s Wacky Art Shirts: Spreading Autism Awareness, 1 Shirt at a Time

Autism is commonly heard, however, there are several speculations about Autism and of the people affected by it. In the Philippines, it is estimated that there are around 1 million people living with Autism, yet not everybody can understand what it it’s like. The Autism Spectrum Disorder is a condition where a person who is diagnosed with it will not have the same experiences but are noticed by the core symptoms.

Meet Calel, he is a 6-year old who was diagnosed with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) at the age of four. A year ago, he discovered his love for animals and drawing and once he starts on a sketch pad he just cannot stop – his mother Marie, started posting his artwork on Facebook, when a friend commented that if in the case the drawing is produced to be printed on a t-shirt – he definitely would buy. After a few months, Marie launched Calel’s Wacky Art Shirts for 3 reasons: to help with Calel’s therapy needs, to develop the business to eventually be taken over by Calel (when he gets older) and to spread Autism awareness.

Occupational and Speech therapy is costly. Also, there are limited specialists in the Philippines. Kids with ASD need to attend SPED (Special Education) classes which can cost up to Php60,000 a year. For every shirt purchased, this will help Calel’s parents to make sure he gets the special treatments he needs.Calel’s future is still unclear at the age of 6, he shows signs of progress but it is hard to tell if he will be able to live a normal life or yet alone become employed. If Calel’s Wacky Art Shirts becomes a success, this may become his own business to handle. With the first batch of t-shirts printed and distributed, people that ordered have started to ask about Calel and his condition. This helped Marie talk about Autism and educate people on what their family experience day-to-day including the highs and lows.There are so many designs to choose from Calel’s Wacky Art Shirts and each is unique which you will surely love. T-shirt’s come in kids, men and women’s sizes.
Calel’s Wacky Art Shirts are being offered at introductory prizes for the first 100 customers. Please visit their Instagram account for updates and designs: calelswackyartshirts
You may help Calel by purchasing a shirt through their Shopee account: mamaneesshop
They are also accepting donations for art materials like sketch pads, crayons, colored pencils and pens.

Instagram Feature By Little Moments App

I got so hyped when I learned that I have been picked and featured by Jen of @littlemomentsapp  in the theme “clouds” from @fatmumslim ‘s Photo A Day Challenge. The excitement was high I had to share the post by Jen @love_wednesday in my own IG account and in Facebook too. Pardon that excitement I mentioned as it was the first time I got featured. Haha!

Here is the Fab Four for the “clouds” theme last March 14. It would be great if you could also check out and follow the other three Instagrammers featured.

If I recall it correctly, I was a day late in posting my entry for the theme but maybe because the photo of my daughters is quite nice, I got in the Fab Four. I have been on and off in participating in the FMS Photo A Day Challenge in the past years but I am proud that this year, I have not skipped any theme yet… yes! Really hoping I could continue this no-skip streak for the entire year. Thanks to my daughter @iam_k23 as she helped me with a number of themes or prompts with her photos she allowed me to use. She was able to explore Manila during their class field trip and having a better phone camera of course, she took a lot of photos. I really mean a lot. Too many that when she shared it to me through Bluetooth, my phone’s memory got really occupied. I have to really curate all of the photos she shared though and also remembers to give her the credits whenever I use them in Instagram.

Having been able to be part of the Fab Four, I am but inspired to snap more hopefully-beautiful-photos and share it in my Instagram account, not to boast but to express and maybe inspire too.

Image credit: FatMumSlim

Up is the list of prompts and hashtags for the entire month of April. Join us this April in FatMumSlim’s Photo A Day Challenge. See how you can also challenge and express yourself through the photos you share in Instagram.

iFern Entrepreneurship

An Aunt who has the heart of an entrepreneur, just like my Mama, invited me in a small talk and presentation of the new business she ventured. Attendees were introduced to iFern. Tommanny Tan, President and CEO, is the man behind of it all. He is also a mentor or called “Kapatid” in the Go Negosyo and Department of Trade and Industry’s Kapatid: Mentor ME (Micro Entrepreneur) Program. iFern is FERN’s international Network Marketing wing is on the rise and has penetrated the network marketing industry with the launch of world-class quality products such as Fern-D and Fern Active.

Fern-D (Image from i-fern website)

Fern-D is a brand name for Vitamin D3 or the generic name Cholecalciferol. An affordable and clinically-proven Vitamin D supplement. Study shows that a person with enough or with high levels of vitamin D has lower risks on having diseases like muscle weakness, tuberculosis, diabetes and a few more.

Fern-Activ (Image from i-fern website)

Fern-Activ on the other hand is packed with B-vitamins and also contains non-acidic vitamin C for improved immunity, Zinc for energy and vitamin D for stronger muscles.

Personally, I was drawn into the health benefits of the said Fern-D and Fern Activ but big yes to the Aurora soap and lotion.

Aurora (Image from i-fern website)

Aurora beauty bar has three age-defying ingredients which are Argan Oil, Swiss Apple Stem Cell and Aloe Vera. It is so fragrant too and said to help prevent mosquito bites. Aurora Beauty Bar leaves skin whiter, smoother, lighter and moisturized. It also helps diminish age spots, hyper-pigmentation, Melasma and  the very common skin problem, acne.

My aunt, a senior citizen who doesn’t look like one in fact, is already a distributor since September last year and has personally proved the health benefits of Fern-D and Aurora Beauty Bar on her. Aside from the speaker, there were also other entrepreneurs my aunt has invited to give more details on the marketing side of the company. So, when I got home, I have Fern-D, Fern-Active, Aurora Beauty Bar and Aurora Hand and Body Lotion. I got invited too to venture in the iFern entrepreneurship opportunity they have but will have to test these products myself first and then decide if I have to also join or just help my Aunt in her business. After a month of usage, I will sure make another review post about these new products she introduced me to.