Picture Perfect

“The most treasured heirlooms are the sweetest memories of our family.”

~ Terri Burritt

 

I was recently given a chance to recuperate and enjoy some free time. This is every mother’s dream— to finally rest and have a bit of time for herself. Because I was used to always being busy, I wanted to use the time to still be productive, and to catch up on my personal to-do’s that always took the backseat

One of my projects was to organize family photos. All of our family pictures from trips, candid moments, selfies are just dumped in my phone. And when last year’s phone was suddenly corrupted, I also lost a lot of memories because I was not able to back up my gallery. So I vowed to be more consciencious in documenting and organizing our pictures. The goal was to save these photos, and to create yearly albums so we can see my daughter’s growth through significant milestones in our family life.

Easier said than done! It seemed like a gazillion pictures needed to be saved and archived correctly. So while there’s still much to be done, the important thing was I was able to start it. Now, I’ll put more effort to save and organize more frequently. After all, moments are fleeting and memories cannot be recreated exactly the way it happened. And these memories will be a family’s treasure, that will be handed down to the next generations.

Next stop, select pictures and layout to photo albums! 😊

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Old Traditions, New Beginnings

“Home is the nicest word there is.” ~ Laura Ingells Wilder

December flew by so fast. Everything was a flurry of construction, appliances delivery, and shopping for more fixtures. My christmas haven was home depot, and my gift from Santa was a queen sized bed. This is what it meant to be adulting… moving into our own place at last. We tried to squeeze in some holiday traditions too, just to provide some normalcy:

  • Starbucks planners (they did BOTO stickers this year!)
  • Christmas reunions with friends and family
  • Photos by the yuletide decors in malls
  • Shopping for new shoes
  • Simbang Gabi with bibingka and puto bumbong
  • MMFF film (new Jennylyn-Derek-Dan fan)
  • Spa and japanese brunch with the hubby
  • … and watching Disney on Ice! (New tradition this year!)

As we spend the holidays in our new home, I’m in the mood to create (fewer but more realistic amd doable) new years resolutions as well:

  • Family: Less gadgets so I can be more present in the moment.
  • Marriage: More patience. Choose thy battles.
  • Health: Walk more. No more chips.
  • Work: Be more on time for meetings.
  • Finances: Cut credit cards.

New Years bring new beginnings for us in our new home. Here’s to fresh starts for 2018!

Traffic Conflict

“Traffic is only one of the side effects of growth.” ~ Roy Barnes


Most people say that if you can drive in Manila, then you can drive anywhere in the world. The traffic system in the city has become notorious, especially in the recent months, when the long hours on the road became the subject of memes, sarcastic tweets, and random rants of commuters and drivers alike. 

Yes, manila traffic is horrible. It gets me cranky and tired, and it takes away precious time I could have spent at work or with family. So what’s a working mom to do? Here’s my survival plan to still be productive while stuck in a standstill:

Listen to Audiobooks.

I’m currently subscribed to Blinkist, an app which summarizes books and captures the highlights in blinks or mini-chapters. Wide range of topics include business, time management, relationships, even parenting tips. This way, you can still enjoy the take away messages in just minutes. Plus factor is their audiobook version, so you can plug this in and listen to a “storyteller” read through the blinks while navigating traffic. 

Clean the Clutter.

There’s always some old receipt or expired item left in the car. So what better way to practice konmari than by letting go of these articles during a traffic stop? Always bring a handy bag or plastic you can use to store these items, then throw it all away once you reach your destination. Cleaning the car is also clearing your mind.

Call the Clients. 

This I will only advise using hands-free, speakerphone calls. I usually sneak in follow-up calls to clients, suppliers or office assistants for quick reminders on tasks to do. Sometimes I also call home to check on my daughter or my husband, who I was not able to bond with more as I leave earlier to go to the office. Quick calls lessen the checklist, and still make up for productive time while on the road. Don’t do this while in moving traffic. 

Retouch the Makeup.

Quick dab of lipstick or powder, and we’re good to go. When I have more time, I keep tweezers also in the car so I can clean up my brows as well. 

Run through the Day.

When there’s nothing to do, the mind can easily wander aimlessly to all directions. I usually use this time to think about tasks I have to do for the day, or even, for the week. This can even include grocery lists, personal errand reminders, or people I have to call back. The mental checklist helps me remember what I have to do both at home and the office, so that I can hit the ground running already as soon as I get to my destination. 

Pray the Rosary.

It only takes about 15 minutes, and you can pray for a miracle to power through the traffic. Otherwise, you can also use the quiet time to meditate and clear your mind.

There are many other ways to use the traffic time wisely. What matters is that we stay patient and stay positive, and that we can rise above the seemingly useless situation to still be productive, working moms.