At the Pigeon Breastfeeding Talk + Breastfeeding Rooms Launch at HSBC Centre

When I was sent an invitation to the Pigeon Breastfeeding Talk and unveiling of the Pigeon Breastfeeding Rooms at HSBC Centre in BGC by Ritz of Richwell Philippines, I didn’t think twice of accepting it. Primary reason is that it features a topic that I can relate to: breastfeeding. I gave birth to a baby girl last December, and though I must admit I mix-feed her, I wanted to learn more about breastfeeding.

The Pigeon Breastfeeding Talk at HSBC Centre

The Pigeon Breastfeeding Talk at HSBC Centre

So last Saturday, I went to the venue and got excited to learn about the basics of breastfeeding and how to overcome the challenges that come with it.

It’s nice to know that Pigeon truly understands the needs of a new mom, especially when it comes to feeding their child. They have products that address every concern, from bottles to breast pumps to breast care accessories to cleansers and sterilizers.

Pigeon Manual Breast Pump

The Manual Pump, for moms who aren’t keen on electric pumps

Pigeon Portable Electric Breast Pump

The Portable Electric Pump, which can fit in a working mom’s handbag

Pigeon Electric Breast Pump Pro

The Electric Breast Pump Pro, which has an LED monitor where you can see and adjust the suction levels and speed

All these breast pumps from Pigeon come with the Comfort ProperFit™ soft silicone cushions for a comfortable fit and more efficient pumping. These also come in 2 different sizes to fit every breast size, forming an airtight seal to reduce milk spills and spoilage. And these also feature a 2-Phase Technology, the stimulation and expression modes that can be adjusted, depending on the mom’s preferred level.

Pigeon Breastfeeding Accessories

Pigeon also has accessories like the Silicone Nipple Shield (for moms with cracked nipples), Nipple Puller (for inverted nipples), Nipple Care Cream, and Breast Care Gel, as well as Breastmilk Storage Bags and Bottles.

Pigeon Breast Pads Honeycomb

For moms on the go, there’s Pigeon’s Breast Pads, for protection against leaks and stains

Pigeon Liquid Cleanser and Electric Steam Sterilizer

For baby’s bottles and feeding utensils, Pigeon has a Liquid Cleanser and Electric Steam Sterilizer

And to help solve breastfeeding woes, Pigeon organized the Breastfeeding Talk that targeted pregnant women and new moms.

Pigeon Breastfeeding Talk

The event was hosted by Ms. Heidi Uy

Pigeon Breastfeeding Talk

Special guest: Ms. Chiqui Brosas, a childbirth educator, doula, and breastfeeding advocate

Pigeon Breastfeeding Talk

Ms. Chiqui demonstrating the proper way to breastfeed a baby

The blogger attendees were also able to witness the launch of the Pigeon Breastfeeding Stations in 2 floors of HSBC Centre.

Pigeon Breastfeeding Stations at HSBC Centre

Ribbon cutting for the launch of the Pigeon Breastfeeding Stations at HSBC Centre

Pigeon Breastfeeding Station at HSBC Centre

Ms. Maye Yao Co Say, COO of Richwell Philippines, donates Pigeon Breast Pumps that moms working in HSBC Centre can use (lucky moms!)

Pigeon Breastfeeding Stations in HSBC Centre

The breastfeeding rooms are so cute and cozy. They are located on the 4th and 5th floors of HSBC Centre in Bonifacio Global City

Pigeon Breastfeeding Stations in HSBC Centre

There are informative posters on the walls

Pigeon Breastfeeding Station in HSBC

The wall stickers inside the breastfeeding rooms are so cute!

It’s so great that Pigeon is promoting breastfeeding not only through their products but also by creating avenues that help moms continue their breastfeeding journey even while at work. I sure hope they build Breastfeeding Stations in more offices to encourage more working moms not to give up on breastfeeding and expressing their breastmilk.

Going to this event really opened my eyes about breastfeeding and the benefits it gives to babies. I’m actually inspired to continue giving my daughter breastmilk. Hopefully more breastmilk than formula.

Thanks to Pigeon and Richwell Philippines for inviting me to this wonderful event. :)

Sip n’ Go: Starbucks Philippines’ new drinks and food items for summer

Summer’s here! And Starbucks Philippines is offering new food items and drinks in the menu.

To beat the summer heat, Starbucks presents 2 new Frappuccino Blended Beverages.

Starbucks Dark Mocha Panna Cotta and Summer Berry Panna Cotta Frappuccino Blended Beverages

Dark Mocha Panna Cotta and Summer Berry Panna Cotta Frappuccino Blended Beverages

The Dark Mocha Panna Cotta comes with a layer of panna cotta pudding at the bottom, followed by Starbucks’ signature Dark Mocha Frappuccino. It is topped with whipped cream and dark mocha powder dusting.

For those who want something caffeine-free, pick the Summer Berry Panna Cotta, which comes with panna cotta pudding, cream Frappuccino with summer berry sauce, whipped cream top, and berry drizzle.

You can pair these drinks to any of its new food offerings:

Starbucks Summer Food Items

Clockwise from top left: Chicken Cheese Steak Wrap, Italian Chicken and Ham on Flat Bread, Triple Chocolate Cake, Herb and Cheese Toast, and Jalapeno Cheese Turnover.

These are available at all Starbucks stores, except for the Chicken Cheese Steak Wrap, which won’t be sold in Baguio, Boracay, Bacolod, Cebu, CDO, Davao, Iloilo, Naga, General Santos, Tarlac, Subic, Dagupan, and Bataan branches.

Starting today until June 8, 2015, you can enjoy all these new food items and beverages from Starbucks. Sip n’ go!

The school issue, Grade School edition

Yup, my dear daughter graduated from Kinder 2. And with an Honorable Mention, too (she’s number 4 in her batch).

The little graduate

The little graduate

Now it’s time for her to go to Elementary level.

Hubby and I have been actually searching for another school she can transfer in since last year. While the school she was in during Pre-school was okay, we felt that it wasn’t really at par with other schools — bigger schools. I was a product of a big school, a Catholic one at that (and exclusive), so I believed that Zee should go to a big school as well.

So some weeks after I gave birth, we went to Pasig Catholic College (PCC) to inquire and have my daughter take the entrance exam. She passed, though the guidance counselor said that she would be put under probation because of her behavior: during the exam, she kept on getting out of her seat (nothing new, she was always “standing and walking” in class in her Nursery and Kinder days). The guidance counselor also explained that, if we decide that she goes there, she would have to keep up with the lessons. They are a traditional school, the counselor said, and there would be 40+ students in one class so the teacher won’t be able to concentrate on a particular kid. Or something to that effect. Anyhoo, since Zee would be on probation during the year, the teachers and guidance counselor will look into her performance during the year. She would be assessed twice during the schoolyear. There will be consultations between the counselor and us parents if my daughter would need improvement in certain aspects. At the end of the schoolyear, the principal will recommend if she’ll stay, move to the next level, or have to transfer to another school.

I told my parents, sister, and sister-in-law about it. My SIL told me that it didn’t seem fair, because Zee’s still in the sort-of “baby stage” (she’s been our household’s baby for the longest time — 5 years — before I recently gave birth). My mom suggested we seek another school. My sister, a guidance counselor herself, said that we should look into enrolling Zee in a school with a much smaller population as PCC.

It wasn’t as if PCC was my only choice. I kinda wanted Zee to go there because I believed that they produced good students (my brothers graduated there, I guess there’s the bias). And they’re a Catholic school. But with their student population — and there are a LOT of students per class, and around 6 sections (or more) per level — I feared that Zee wouldn’t really thrive there.

Plus, the school was farther from the house. Halfway to the school, Zee was getting restless inside the vehicle, like she was about to throw up (she has motion sickness). We also thought of the school bus fee, which we need to pay monthly as well. Add that to the tuition that’s almost PHP 40,000. It would be kinda heavy on the pocket.

So we looked into other schools, preferably one that has a smaller population, a more affordable tuition, and near our house. That’s when I stumbled upon Wesleyan Academy in St. Joseph Subdivision, near Ever Ortigas. I saw their tarpaulin when we traveled for Zee’s graduation. I’ve heard about it; my mom said one of our neighbor’s children went there and they grew up to become professionals in their own field. She said the school seemed okay, so hubby and I went to inquire.

Wesleyan Academy is a non-sectarian school and already K-12 compliant. The school’s located inside a residential neighborhood. It seemed bigger than Zee’s previous school but a lot smaller than PCC. According to the person we approached (I think she was part of the school’s admin), the population is 25 students max per class. And if I assume correctly, there’s only one class per level.

I got to talk to the guidance counselor, he said that since they are utilizing the K-12 curriculum, the grading system is performance-based. As long as the student performs the task assigned for the day, he or she will get a grade. (My sister further expounded the concept: the grading system would be like “Meets Expectations” or “Does Not Meet Expectations”, with a narrative explaining where the child excels or needs improvement and what actions to do) They also are limiting the number of students, so when they reach the maximum number of students per class, they will close admission.

Tuition is also more affordable than PCC, around PHP 28,000, not including books, field trip, and uniform (I guess having Cainta, Rizal as their address is an added factor).

Hubby seemed open to enrolling Zee here, so we had her take the entrance test. She passed, though she needs work on Filipino (as expected, she got a final grade of 86 in that subject, hehe!). That we will work on, as well as her penmanship. But I think, we’re set on Wesleyan.

My dad, though, took issue on the fact that it was non-sectarian. Meaning, no Christian Living/Religion Subject (he’s a traditional Catholic, and our parish’s lay minister president, and he made sure all his kids went to a Catholic school until High School). Well, Wesleyan would have Values Education, we were told. Good thing my mom was more open about it, saying that whatever religion the person has, what matters more is the values he or she has (naks!). And of course, hubby and I are the ones who will have the last say — we’re paying for the tuition.

So yeah. Wesleyan Academy it is. We just have to schedule the day when we’ll enroll Zee. We have to hurry, though, so we’d still have a slot.

So far, with the people we’ve talked to at Wesleyan, they’ve been pretty accommodating. The tuition and location is also a plus. I think Zee will thrive more here. Hopefully.

Fingers crossed.

MILO Opens 2015 Summer Sports Clinics

It’s summertime once again! Have you planned anything yet? Aside from going on vacations, this season is the best time to enhance one’s skill. And for your kids, summer is the perfect time to get into something physical — sports! For parents who are looking into enrolling their children to sports lessons, MILO is opening its Summer Sports Clinic for 2015.

MILO Summer Sports Clinic 2015

MILO Summer Sports Clinic 2015

The MILO Summer Sports Clinic is the most widely participated sports program in the Philippines. With its commitment to discovering and developing tomorrow’s champion athletes, MILO encourages school children to make the most of their summer vacation by learning sports and taking on new challenges.

From April to May this year, the program will offer immersive training in 14 sporting disciplines: Badminton, Basketball, Bowling, Gymnastics, Volleyball, Karatedo, Ice Skating, Tennis, Taekwondo, Table Tennis, Touch Rugby, Chess, Football, and Swimming. All these sports clinics will be handled by expert coaches and instructors who use the modern scientific approach, with character-forming lessons incorporated in the program.

Touch Rugby is the latest addition in MILO’s roster of sports this year, in partnership with the Philippine Rugby Union. This is in their efforts to introduce the sport and provide children an avenue for training with the hopes of serving as a springboard to the Youth Olympic Games, wherein Rugby 7s is a sport.

Enroll your children now to the MILO Summer Sports Clinic and give your children a meaningful summer as they not only learn champion moves but also develop champion values, such as determination, discipline, teamwork, perseverance, hard work, respect, and confidence, that will make them become winners on and off the court. Check out the schedules at http://www.milo.com.ph/ssc/schedules.html. Classes are offered in different regions of Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.

For more information on MILO Philippines, log on to their official website, http://www.milo.com.ph/ or the MILO Philippines Facebook Page, https://www.facebook.com/milo.ph. You can also follow MILO on Twitter (@MiloPH) and Instagram (@MiloPhilippines).

(PR content and photo from Andrea Alido of Strategic Edge)

The epic “May Powers Ka To Be #SuperEpic” — a book review

Let me say this disclaimer: to be honest, the last time I’ve done a book review was eons ago. Okay, so maybe it was more of a book report (so high school — now you have and idea). But today, I’ll be doing a book review, and hopefully you’ll find it worth reading.

May Powers Ka To Be #SuperEpic

Just read: May Powers Ka To Be #SuperEpic by Mighty Rasing

The book in focus is entitled May Powers Ka To Be #SuperEpic, written by Mighty Rasing and published via OMF Literature. The author is the blogger behind PinoyYuppie.com and MightyRasing.com, and producer of the Happy Yuppie Podcast. He co-hosts the radio program Family Matters aired at 702 DZAS. Mighty is also part of the youth ministry of the United Methodist Church and is committed to working with the youth. #SuperEpic is actually one of his avenues in connecting with today’s young generation, as the book is all about encouraging and empowering the youth in finding their purpose, passion, and vision as God’s children and eventually making their lives, well, super epic. :)

#SuperEpic is actually just a short book, some hundred pages long, with the text presented in conversational Taglish, making it easy to read even for the busy yuppies out there. What’s nice about this is that the topics are not hard to fathom, especially that Mighty makes analogies or references to DC and Marvel superheroes. In the book he uses these characters to explain his topics per chapter:

Chapter 1: Spiderman – how the youth can use their potentials and available resources responsibly

Chapter 2: Batman – getting committed to one’s intellectual, physical, spiritual, and social development

Chapter 3: Human Torch – discovering one’s passion without getting burned out

Chapter 4: Cyclops – having the vision how to pursue one’s passion while accepting the challenges that come with it

Chapter 5: Nick Fury – finding the people that can help achieve the vision

Chapter 6: The Hulk – dealing with conflicts and using them as an opportunity to grow

Chapter 7: Superman – acknowledging one’s weaknesses and knowing how to overcome them

Bible verses are also incorporated in each chapter, albeit presented in a way that’s not too preachy or in-your-face, if you know what I mean. Infusing catholic teachings in lessons in youth leadership and social transformation while speaking in a language that’s current and interesting — this is what makes #SuperEpic a powerful read.

I admit, I’m past the age of the demographic this book targets (I’m in my mid-30s). Yet #SuperEpic still resonates well within me. The book is like a reminder for myself — that however ordinary I may be, I can make a difference. I may not have superpowers, but I can use the talents I have to improve not just my life’s condition but other people’s lives as well.

I recommend May Powers Ka To Be #SuperEpic not just to the young ones out there but to everyone still seeking their purpose, passion, and vision. You won’t receive superpowers instantly after reading, but if you’ll allow, this book can and will stir in transformation in your life.

May Powers Ka To Be #SuperEpic is already out in the market. You can also purchase it online at omflit.com for only PHP 75. Also check out the book’s official website, http://besuperepic.com, for more info and some free downloadable resources.

Thank you, Mighty Rasing and OMF Literature, for this wonderful read. :)