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Loyalty In Family


Loyalty in Family


Loyalty in a family is important


No matter how big the differences are, pitting a family member against another, name-calling, and so on should be unacceptable.


Ever seen a clan whose members tear each other apart? This is a family who kills or sells their own.


The Godfather


Just reminds me because a Japanese student of mine has watched all three Godfather movies and she recounted how the main character, who used to be reluctant to take part in the family’s “business,” ended up killing his very own uncle and brother.


Only in the movies


Well, it’s only in the movies, but it’s heart-wrenching just the same.

April 25, 2018

Photoshop and Make-up

Photoshop and Makeup



Below is An Old Post:


I’m sure my roommate won’t mind but I took her book and read it (without her permission). It’s Besties by Solenn Heussaff and Georgina Wilson. I meant to have a movie marathon but I was feeling a bit guilty about not having read and written for quite some time now.


And my horoscope was saying that I was supposed to be “talented” at writing, but of course that’s not true because I wasn’t writing anything. Rather, whatever I’ve written is totally banal and bland. Give it some flairtwist phrases, make it crisp and fresh, make it original…


These days, I’m actually also starting to feel that I’ve totally lost it. I mean, I’ve forgotten a lot of words and writing styles and the like, and punctuation and grammar rules can be too much of a bother. Also, no matter how much time I have, I just can’t seem to bring myself to follow through with whatever draft I’ve started.


So, I was a bit tuckered out by the feeling of being overwhelmed with all those roiling feelings and thoughts yesterday. I decided to turn my laptop off and read again, but I couldn’t even look at my books as fondly as I had before. They all looked as unnecessarily draining. (Sorry, my books. I will definitely find my way back to you in no time.) I wanted something new, something I could sink my teeth into but something light.


And so the Besties. It had always been on my roommate’s lower deck I suppose, but in my boredom, I took serious notice of it only yesterday. Surprise! I enjoyed it. Solenn and Georgina dish on the pressures of being public figures and of being female. They also give tips on fashion, travel, fitness, finance, and relationships.


As gleaned from what they’ve written and how it’s written, the girls have a pretty good head on their shoulders, but what stands out to me is their take on Photoshop and makeup. They have in the book one before and after Photoshop photo of theirs. I think it’s remarkably brave. While they sometimes ask for their photos to be Photoshopped and there’s just no helping the makeup at times, they feel the whole thing can mess with your mind in the end. You can get so used to how you’re being portrayed and it can be overdone, you could lose sense of what you really look like.


Then of course, who can’t relate? One time, when I needed to have some ID pictures taken and I thought I looked rather awful in them, I asked the staff in the photo shop if they could make them look better (I was hoping that the pictures would look more like my real face, at least. Bah! I thought my real face couldn’t be that god-awful-looking. Haha…), and whoa, they looked better indeed! Way way better, in fact. Seriously, I looked like, brace yourselves! No other than the beauteous Gretchen Barretto!

I didn’t know what to feel, but I sure gasped in surprise. In my defense, my skin was so much clearer before, but no matter. The nose, the eyes – God, I looked so freaking beautiful!


To make the long story short, because, of course, I didn’t want to spend on another set, I had them and I used them. I suppose they went to some database and so when people there look my name up, they’ll be really amazed – wow, she’s quite a beauty, isn’t she?


That’s really funny, but whenever I dwell on it, it somehow makes me feel like a big fraud. The same goes for applying makeup. Now, as much as possible, I don’t use anything on my face. I’ve also given my lips a rest.


Maybe I’ve just gotten tired of trying hard to look pretty. Well, I don’t know about tomorrow, but that’s how I feel about it these days.



I still feel the same way about Photoshop and makeup. As for the lipstick thing, I’ve resumed using it for my work. I teach online, and for some reason, the natural pink or reddish color of my lips just doesn’t get captured well enough by the camera. No lipstick = Zombie look for me. So, the continued use of the lipstick. How about you? How do you feel about Photoshop and makeup?

April 19, 2018

Good Neighbors, Bad Neighbors? We’ve had them!

Uncomfortable in your own home?


I also subscribe to this philosophy that nobody should feel uncomfortable in his/her very own home. Home is a refuge from the outside world. It is a private space that should not be encroached on. However, we’re not really living in a perfect world.


Nosy, creepy, devilish neighbors?


There are always bound to be some of those. The thing with neighbors is they actually DO affect the peace and order situation in your own home.


Let me  tell you why.


Some of these people simply have a  lot of time in their hands. They may not have jobs or they’re full-time housewives or the husbands are part-time workers, and the like. Even the gainfully employed can join in on the fun.


On the surface, these are very friendly, civic-minded, very concerned citizens. They visit homes or linger at neighborhood stores to catch the latest on anyone they consider interesting enough, which can be YOU. Good luck!


Out of curiosity, they fish for more information and out of their “concern and goodness of heart”, they give their two cents worth.


Oh, but you’re interesting!


Then, they zero in on the “interesting” personality’s family. These people somehow know who the weakest link in the family is.  By that, I mean the one most vulnerable to manipulation and gossip.


Now, which family doesn’t have any issues?


Not my fault, your family’s weak!


Under the guise of friendship and moral support, these people get feeds from the weakest link and on equal turn feed good ideas to him or her, eventually sowing discord in the family or adding to its problems. In some situations, they even willingly take on the responsibility of making decisions for the target family. Too far-fetched? No, it’s been known to happen many times.


There’s nothing wrong with being friendly with neighbors. However, lines should be drawn as to what are purely family matters and off limits to them.


Just doing your own thing.


Same goes for creepy neighbors. You’re just doing your own thing:  Visit the garden, enjoy the sight of the flowers there, pick some fruit. Or, you’re simply hanging your clothes.  Some neighbors though do keep tab of your every move which makes you feel SO creeped out, you want to call the police on them. However, they’re the “good ones”, the “concerned citizens” and there’s no way you could record their creepily prying moves!


What to do?


I’ve found the following great reads on the topic. I think I couldn’t have come up with better ideas than theirs. Please check them out, too.


And just for laughs, I love these from Pinterest.



















April 17, 2018

Some great PINS on Bullies, Bullying, and Emotional Abuse



I’m still blindsided by some rather negative experiences I’ve had recently. This topic is really something I’ve been wanting to write about for a long time.  I just wasn’t able to properly name things, and I thought it would be great if I could be politically correct. Otherwise, I may indeed be dismissed as some blabbering fool.


Let me start by giving you a definition of BULLYING and how to distinguish it from plain RUDENESS and the ordinary kind of MEANNESS from my friends on Pinterest:


Is It Bullying?

Types of Bullying











And the even scarier part: BAITING and BASHING


narcissistic personality disorder | Baiting & Bashing (B&B) | Psychopath ResistanceI SO TRUE...




I know that we are supposed to DOCUMENT, REPORT, and ASK FOR HELP, but sometimes, especially when the people involved are those close to you, and they abuse you the silent, insidious way, it can be really difficult to document the abuse and to know where to turn for help. What I did was I stayed productive all throughout the ordeal. Now, I’m trying to understand the psychology behind bullying and psychological and emotional abuse. It is so I’ll know how to cope better. It is true that I did lose my equilibrium for some time (I let them get the best of me, in other words). I just wasn’t tough enough.


How about you?


Have you ever been bullied and psychologically and emotionally abused, whether in person or online? It would be great to compare notes with you.


March 26, 2018

Three Simple Tricks to Make Halloween Work For You

Simple Halloween Tricks


Let’s just take it. We’re busy, but the Halloween is coming and we’ve got to prepare something for it whether we like it or not.


Gripe around or just chill? It’s your call.


As for me, I go with the latter. Although I don’t have children of my own, I’m forever surrounded by them. They’re one demographic I have to prepare for, that’s for sure.



And then, there’s the old group on the other side. For Pinoys, the The Halloween stretches on to November 2nd which is our All Souls Day holiday. November 1st is for all the saints in heaven that we have, which is why it’s called All Saints Day. Just a brief  background: The Philippines is a predominantly Catholic country.


On these two days, we prepare traditional Filipino food and visit the grave of our dead relatives and friends. This may not be unique to the Pinoys, but on these days, the old and the old-fashioned place the favorite food of their dead loved ones on altars in their homes and in cemeteries.


In short, Halloween is a mix of the old and the new for us. Both have their own demands. So, it can get hectic.



Here are my own suggestions to make the Halloween more a breeze than a pain, something that is very much possible, actually.


No need to buy pricey, elaborate Halloween costumes for your kids.


Use the clothes that your kids already have. Think of easy to fix characters that are just as fun. As the point of the whole thing is “to spook or amuse people,” be trigger happy with the makeup colors and the mix-and-matching of outfits! I’ve found this website here which is full of genius but doable ideas.  However, if you really are in a pinch and you just need to buy costumes, head straight to cent shops or discount shops. You all know too well that when talking about kids, they not only grow so fast, they also ruin clothes rather fast. The main point: No need to spend a lot on such things.


Kids are suckers for sweets.


At their age, they aren’t really that brand or quality conscious yet. So long as the candies and goodies look good and are actually safe to eat, you don’t need to go for the luxuriously priced ones.


Cater or order in food.


As hard as it is to believe, catering or ordering in food (Especially those that are tiresome to make, think: puto, biko, bibingka, suman, etc.) actually does not only save you much needed time to relax and do more important things (Imagine: you in the living room having fun conversations with the kids and the old family members alike), the prices are not bad at all. There are a lot of catering and food delivery services around which offer real good value for your money.


Go as the Bible says.


As the bible story of Jesus visiting Mary and Martha illustrates, we shouldn’t allow ourselves to get too distracted by all the preparations we think are needed for such occasions. We need to know better which is more important, and to me, that is to spend more time with both the young and the old members of your family. There’s nothing like engaging in a conversation with your family with nothing less than your full attention, don’t you agree?




This post contains some affiliate links, but the views expressed are totally my own.


October 28, 2017

English Communication Skills 101 : Podcasts

English Podcasts


Don’t get me wrong here. I’m every inch a Filipino. My mother tongue is Cebuano. When I go north, I speak Filipino, my country’s national language. However, if you ask me what language I prefer to use more often, I would say, English without batting an eyelash.


English has opened doors for me.  If I had not been able to speak and write in English, I would probably still be toiling somewhere earning minimum wage.
Read More!

October 19, 2017