Wednesday, December 10

Our Five Core Filipino Values and Krem-Top's Change for the Better Pilipinas Campaign

And we're down to the last few weeks of 2014! I'm sure most of you are preparing your New Year's resolutions already. These past years, "dieting" and "more excercise time" have been the suki New Year's resolutions in my list. Sounds familiar? LOL!

So how about we change those to include the traits that we Filipinos are truly known for so we can contribute in the betterment of our nation? This is what Alaska Krem-Top's latest "Change for the Better" campaign for is all about.


Started in 2012, the "Change for the Better" campaign is a call to action for people to commit and sustain the change to become better individuals, not just during the turn of the year but all throughout the year and beyond. The campaign has grown from being a personal call to change to being nationalistic as the mission is not just on one’s self anymore but on the entire nation as the Filipino spirit has been put into tests with the onslaught of recent calamities in the recent past.

At the recent "Change for the Better" Bloggers Conference, Dr. Mina Ramirez of the Asian Social Institute identified 5 Filipino Core Values that make Filipinos stand out from the rest. Definitely, when practiced daily, these values can make our country better.

Based on Dr. Ramirez’s study “The Filipino Worldview and Values” and her insights from decades of practice as a phenomenological sociologist, here are the Five Core Filipino Values based on the Basic Aspirations of a Filipino:
  1. Mapagpasalamat - Filipinos are naturally positive and we were smiles on our faces even in the most depressing situations. We always say, "Salamat sa Diyos (Thank God)" and we also do not forget to return the favor to people who have done good deeds to us.
  2. Matatag - Filipinos have this innate strength and firmness even in the midst of hardships. We are able to fight and endure obstacles for the sake of our loved ones.
  3. Masigasig - Again, for our families and loved ones, we strive hard to achieve abundance. A perfect example of this trait would be the Overseas Filipino Workers who work hard abroad so their families can have a better life.
  4. Mapagmalasakit - Filipinos do not only care for their family but also for their friends, neighbors, and communities. We are naturally compassionate and we keep the bayanihan spirit alive especially in times of calamities.
  5. Magalang - We are known to give respect to our elders with the words po and opo and through pagmamano (kissing of the hand). Our language itself is also respectful because it does not have any gender bias. Examples would be the words kapatid (brother / sister) or asawa (husband / wife) or biyenan (father-in-law / mother-in-law) or anak (son / daughter) which do not manifest differences in gender.
“Filipinos may be hard pressed at times, but in general, we are rich. We are rich in natural resources; we are rich in our people. If we can just get to know more ourselves clearly and use our values to our advantage, we will become a better nation. It’s time to change for the better,” said Dr. Ramirez.


Alaska Milk Corporation’s Vice President for Marketing and Krem-Top Change for the Better campaign lead, Blen Fernando, is optimistic that this project will help create awareness about the need to keep or enrich or restore these core values of Filipinos. “We hope that Krem-Top’s Change for the Better campaign will inspire us to be the better version of ourselves for the benefit of our families and our country. The public can count on our continued support to champion the Filipino spirit that will help make us a better and stronger nation.”

For more information about Krem-Top Change for the Better campaign, visit www.facebook.com/AlaskaKremTop or follow @kremtopPH on Twitter.


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Thursday, November 27

Destination: Chastity (How To Teach Your Teens Chastity at Home)

In the recently concluded Kerygma Conference 2014 in Manila, one of the Life Classes I signed up for is Jason Evert's chastity talk for parents entitled, Destination: Chastity. I did not let the opportunity pass because my boy is now fourteen and it's the perfect time for me to learn how to influence him to be pure and chaste.


Now, before you continue reading, know that the purpose of this write-up is not to condemn people who have given up their virginity or those who are not abstaining from sex before marriage. I, myself, am a failure in this respect. We were already 5 months pregnant with Ralph when my husband and I got married. But as I grew more in my Catholic faith, I understood that our God is a God of second chances and this is my second chance to make things right.


Jason Evert (@jasonevert) is a Catholic author and chastity speaker. He and his wife, Crystalina, are the ones behind ChastityProject.com and he travels across America and different countries to speak to parents and young audiences. During his talk, Jason explained that teenage boys and girls have different understanding of love and lust. For the girls, it's for the sake of being loved. Meanwhile, hormones are to blame for the urge that teenage boys have towards sex. Just the same, if our children are well-loved and guided at home, modesty, purity, and chastity are values that can be passed on to them easily.

Here are some ways that we, as parents, can do at home to teach our teens chastity:

  1. Live an ulterior life of prayer. We should be the ones to always intercede for our children. And although it sometimes takes time, God answers the deepest desires of our hearts.
  2. Teach your children sacrifice and be confident that they can do it.  Abstinence from sex until marriage will require a lot of sacrifice. Saying that it's alright to have sex as long as it's safe tells our children that we expect them to fail in this abstinence thing.
  3. Be a parent more than a buddy. Form boundaries even when your kids hate you for doing so.  The "thank you" will come later on when they're older and more mature.
  4. Teach your teen to take dating seriously. The ultimate purpose of dating is to find a life-time partner. Teens should understand that they can take their time and date only when they are ready.
  5. Maintain a parenting network. Make friends with good parents with kids the same age as yours. With a support group backing you up, you can pick up good strategies in raising your teen and also get to check whether you're out of bounds or not.
  6. Be updated on the latest internet and media safety tools. Install useful apps/software to check your teen's computer browsing or chat history. Know how to configure your WiFi router so obscene sites are blacklisted. Most importantly, get rid of all access points to pornography at home (even the sexy magazines, please).
  7. Talk to your kids. Let them feel that you can still be a friend even with the rules you set for them. Ask the right questions; never be too demanding.
  8. Don't just give them "the talk" but give them lots of talk. The usual mom-to-daughter or dad-to-son talk about the birds and the bees happen at this stage.  Jason recommends that even the moms can do "the talk" to their sons or the dads to their daughters. It could be very awkward but he maintains that awkwardness is part of authenticity. Mom and Dad can take turns or both can do "the talk" at the same time. Anyway, it's never a one time affair.
  9. Get over your own insecurities. Your authority in teaching chastity to your teen doesn't come from your own history but from God. Before this point was raised, I was actually thinking about asking Mr. Evert how I can teach my son chastity when I wasn't even able to do it. But Jason said, if you already repented for your sin, you are still credible to teach chastity to your children. Also, both parents should teach chastity and not only the mom. The dad must also speak because children always follow the footsteps of their father.
  10. Chastity should be taught as a virtue. Teach your teen to regard sex as God's plan for their marriage. When a newly wedded couple makes love for the first time on their wedding night, they're renewing their vows again but, this time, with their bodies. Also, parents should also practice chastity. No pornography at home because it would also be like committing adultery, although not physically but, with the heart. Make your teen understand that abstinence is also an expression of love. 

The points I shared here are only from the notes I took that day. I'm sure I missed out on some points so I recommend that you visit www.chastityproject.com for additional resources. Have your kids browse the site, too! Be blessed!

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Wednesday, November 26

Markdown Madness at Trinoma

One of the biggest annual sale events in town, Markdown Madness, is happening once again!



Enjoy up to 70% discount on participating brands: Skechers, Sperry Top-Sider, Keds, Saucony, Merrell, Creative Recreation, Pony, and No Fear from November 27 to 30, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. at the TriNoma Activity Center in Quezon City.

Markdown Madness promises to be another grand sale event with great finds on selected items from participating brands. This is a good time to buy your Christmas gifts, too! Hmm... I wonder if I could also find 90 round poly check table covers at The Landmark while I'm there.

Don’t miss this chance to get the best shoe deals in town! Visit Markdown Madness on Facebook for more information and updates.



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Tuesday, November 25

NEW! Safeguard Pure White and Derma Sense Body Wash

For almost 50 years, moms all over the world have trusted Safeguard to protect their families against germs and bacteria. As I child, I have gotten used to using Safeguard in our household. So it's not a surprise at all if I still buy Safeguard for my family.


Fast forward to 2014, Safeguard now has liquid soaps that still offer the same amount of protection against germs and bacteria. Such are Safeguard Pure White Body Wash and Safeguard Derma Sense Body Wash that were sent to me this weekend. I love body washes because I think they tend to be less drying than their bar counterparts. Also, body washes can be used by every member of the family with their own loofahs or towelettes.

Safeguard Pure White Body Wash levels up the germ-fighting formula that we have grown to love in Safeguard bars. It's Triple Shield Formula has Zinc Pyrithione (ZPT) that protects the skin from gram positive bacteria (Streptococcus and Staphylococcus aureus), gram negative bacteria (Escherichia coli and Salmonella), and fungi.

Meanwhile, more than providing the same amount of germ protection, Safeguard Derma Sense Body Wash also addresses some beauty concerns that some members of the family may have. In our case for example, my teenage son is now more concerned with getting rid of pimples on his face while my husband perpetually has dry skin that becomes more dry during the cold -ber months. Safeguard Derma Sense: Anti Acne  would, then, be perfect for my teenager while Safeguard Derma Sense: Sensitive Skin would be for the hubby.

Safeguard Pure White Body Wash and Safeguard Derma Sense Body Wash are both available in leading drugstores and supermarkets for Php 99 for a 200ml bottle. Also available are Safeguard Derma Sense Cleansers for Acne-prone and Sensitive Skin for Php 119 in 50ml and Php 199 in 100ml. For more information, visit www.SafeguardPhilippines.com.

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Sunday, November 2

Be Lifted High at Kerygma Conference 2014 (plus a Book Giveaway!)

When I started serving in the Media Ministry of The FEAST Rizal, I made sure that I will be able to attend the annual Kerygma Conference of Bro. Bo Sanchez. Last year's KCon 2013 was my first and I still thank God for blessing me with the resources and time to attend even just the first 2 days of church classes.


Now on its 8th year, Kerygma Conference, the country’s biggest inspirational learning event, will be held at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC), SMX Convention Center, and Mall of Asia Arena on November 20 – 23, 2014. With the theme “Lifted High”, this year’s Kerygma Conference is set to soar again for another record-breaking run with powerful talks from Catholic lay preacher Bo Sanchez himself and key guest speakers such as Jason Evert of ChastityProject.com, Most Rev. Socrates Villegas, DD, Most Rev. Honesto Ongtioco. DD, Fr. Dave Concepcion, the Kerygma Preachers and a whole lot more.