Thursday, March 31, 2011

There and Back Again

Nope, I am not referring to the book that Bilbo Baggins wrote in the movie, Lord of the Rings, but of some circumstances in life. People always say, "been there, done that" and my mother always says "You will never what it takes to be a Mother unless you become one."

I guess in life,, we go through cycles and perhaps, that's what it meant by "there and back again." I am not trying to philosophize things though as I am not in the authority to do that. I guess I am just speaking of my experience of being a student again and of trying to keep my sanity while being a mom and wife all at the same time.

Since tomorrow is my official Spring Break, I guess I can stop being a student for a while (at least three weeks) and go back to doing the things that I have been doing before I became a Graduate Student, one of which is blogging. And then I can finally read some lipozene reviews and stuff my brain with information unrelated to environmental protection but still worth knowing.

I am smiling just at the thought of being able to finally hit the fitness studio, watching korean series and Pinoy movies that I have been dying to watch, working on my photobook projects again, spending more time with my little girl, updating my blogs, and lots, lots more. That's a lot of stuff to do in just weeks. Lol! I guess life's like that. So many things to do, so little time. And it all boils down to time management and setting priorities.

Last Day of Exams

Today is the last day of my exams. In less than three hours, I will answering ten questions related to environmental economics and technology assessment. I hope that I remember all the stuff that I have been reading and taking note of these past few days.

There are some topics that I learned back when I was still doing my bachelor but that was like nine or ten years ago so that I am familiar with some of the concepts. But as they always, it all depends on how the professor explains things. So in the last few days, I also found myself trying to get and read all the reading materials that I can. I found myself printing lecture notes that I never thought I'd need since they are duplicates of the slide presentations. I got impatient waiting for the printing to finish that I wished we got some of those laser printers on sale. I even realised that I went on a diet because I only ate apples or boiled egg as I am too lazy to prepare a decent meal.

I can't really tell if I am already read to take the exams. I am just keeping my fingers crossed that the questions would not be so difficult and that I will be able to answer them accordingly. With only ten questions and almost ten chapters worth of lectures, it is hard to pinpoint which ones will most probably come out and which ones won't.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

TCP#83: Catch Me If You Can

In case you are wondering, nope, I didn't forget about Tuesday Couch Potatoes. I know I promised that today will be the next edition so I hope you are ready with your movie picks for this week's theme: Best Director Movies.

My pick would be the 2002 American biographical comedy-drama film entitled Catch Me If You Can. It is based on the life of Frank Abagnale Jr., who, before his 19th birthday, successfully conned millions of dollars by posing as a Pan American World Airways pilot, a Georgia doctor and Louisiana attorney and parish prosecutor. His primary crime was cheque fraud; he became so skillful that the FBI eventually turned to him for help in catching other check forgers. The film is directed by Steven Spielberg, where he won the 2003 Critics Choice Award for Best Director. The movie stars Leonardo DiCaprio as Abagnale and Tom Hanks as Hanratty, as well as Christopher Walken, Amy Adams, Martin Sheen, and Nathalie Baye.

This is really a great movie treat that I love to watch it over and over again. No wonder it won the Best Director award. It was so beautifully directed that you would even wonder if it was indeed based on the life of Frank Abagnale Jr.

What's your Best Director Movie Coucher? It's your turn to share your movie. Don't forget to enter your TCP link URL in the linky below:

Thanks for joining us here on Tuesday Couch Potatoes my dears. I hope to see you all again next week for movies with the theme: "Enchanted". Seen a movie that is filled with magic and fantasy? Then come share it with us next Tuesday.

Happy TCP everyone!

No Smoking in Train Stations

It is already understood that smoking is not allowed in all train stations, especially in the platforms. There are only designated areas called Raucherinsel or Smoking Corner so that non-smoking people are protected. However, there are some people who just don't care for others and smoke in the train platforms anyway. And it is so annoying because they still have the nerve to stand right in front of you, with their lit cigarettes and all. There was this one time when a lady was mindlessly smoking and there was an old man who is asthmatic. He was grumbling and wished that there were SSB people controlling so that the lady could be fined €40.00 or so. He started coughing so hard that I thought he would faint. Poor old man. Good thing he always brings with him his medication should the wheezing start.

I don't have anything against people who smoke, I just hope that they would do it at the proper place or if they can't resist smoking in public areas, opt for a smokeless ecigarette instead. These products are a breakthrough as they are smokeless and so you don't smell like you just came out of a room filled with smokers.

What I noticed though with these "Raucherinsel" is that they are situated near the entrances or in areas where most of the people are passing by. What's the point? They should place these smoking areas where there is no high pedestrian traffic. Then older people and children and non-smokers in general are protected.

I just hope people will care more for others and be more socially responsible. As a parent, you wouldn't want your little children exposed to cigarette smoke right? You would protect them from all the harm that it could bring to their health.

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Monday, March 28, 2011

One More To Go

Yosh! This Thursday will be my last day of final exams. I only have Technology Assessment and Environmental Economics left to study. I have three more days to prepare and I know I must not waste this precious time given to me to prepare. That should be a relief for me.

Last Thursday was the most stressful exam ever! I was only able to realize that I got the coefficients all mixed for the chemical components so that I wasn't able to find out which chemical equation is linearly dependent and which ones are not. And with only ten minutes till submission time, I was all cramming! Plus, there was one part where I had no answers to the problems. And because I already forgot to integrate, that made matters worse for me. Waahhh!!! Embarassing as it might be, I don't know how to integrate anymore! To think I am an engineer. Hahah!

I swear I will put "learn how to integrate" in my "to do list" this spring break. Then I will have learned something useful and worthwhile. What a weird way to spend the spring break!

So there. I must stop blogging now. I have a thousand things to do still. And all of them can't wait. Will update later. Have a great week y'all!

How To Keep Your House Moisture- and Mite-Free

My husband is asthmatic. It usually attacks during the cold days and if a room is so stuffy and well, dusty. When he went to the lung specialist last week for a check up, it was found out that his asthma is due to an allergic reaction to house dust mites and cats. It's a kind of a relief for us because that means that it can still be cured and one needs only to take precautionary measures to prevent it from coming. Hubby needs to take his spray regularly to prevent the attacks. Of course, it also means keeping the house moisture-free and mite-free as much as possible. How?

First, one needs to keep all areas of the house moisture-free, that would include the basement moisture although we don't need to worry about it so much because our building basement is five floors below us. Airing the room to let fresh air in and old air out for fifteen minutes will help to keep a room moisture-free.

Regular vacuum cleaning is also helpful. At least once a week vacuum cleaning is recommended. Air your bed and turn it once every three months. The bed is the most favorite breeding ground of house dust mites you know.

Wash and dry your beddings at hot cycles regularly. Dust mites are heat sensitive and exposing them to temperatures over 60°C for an hour proves to be fatal.

If you can help it, it is best to have a carpet-free house as it is faster and more efficient to clean and vacuum flat surfaces. But if you have a carpet at home, be sure that it is regularly vacuumed and that it is dry. You can hang it out in the sun and air it regularly too. 
Remember, PREVENTION is always BETTER than cure. A clean living environment also helps promote a relaxed and good mood.

Mommy Moments: Heavenly In White

My little girl is lucky to have gotten her fair complexion from her Dad. She could wear any color without having to worry whether it would suit her or not. Dark or light colored hues, she would look good in it. But anyway, if it is your daughter, she would always be beautiful for you right?

It's all about colors still for Mommy Moments and I still want to blog about it, albeit late. I just love to see my daughter dressed in white but I don't like her dressing up in this color because at her age, she loves to play anywhere and wouldn't care whether she soils her dress or not.

She would play in the sandbox, down the slides, on stairs, on floors, anywhere so that you could just imagine the stain and soil that her clothes are subjected to at the end of the day. She looks so bulingit and yagit each time I pick her up from the Kindergarten. Lucky for me, there's the washing machine that will do all the dirty work and I only need to hang them out to dry. 

More kids in white at Marce Chris' blog: The Mommy Journey. Enjoying this Mommy meme? Then join us every Friday here on Mommy Moments. Click on the badge below to find out more:

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Friday, March 25, 2011

Another Reason To Collect Points

It is a blessing that we live where we live right now. The location is just very ideal. We are only a few steps away from the train station, there are schools around us, a church nearby, and a grocery store just at the ground floor of our building. And even with all the daily hustle and bustle, it is surprisingly a quiet and safe neighborhood.

I love to buy our groceries in the store downstairs because they are fresh and the selection is good. It's a bit pricey compared to other stores but they do have some promotions. They have this point system where you collect points and can get household items of top brands for a very, very low price. Like last winter, I was able to get a WMF stainless steel pan with a nonstick liner valued at €132.90 for only €36.99, that's about €95.91 worth of savings. This month, they are having another promotion where you can get five-star knives from a very well-known German brand. I wonder if they also have a utility knife in the list, as I know I could use one. Let's see. So I am saving all the points I could get. It is not so often that you can get quality knives such as these for a very low price.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Mommy Moments: Purple

It's high time for me to join Mommy Moments. It has been a while since I last joined and I must admit, I missed participating in this meme. In previous Mommy Moments themes, Mommies have been blogging about their children in different colors. This time, it is the color purple's turn.

My little girl so loves this color, or the pastel version of it. Here, the color is called lila, which incidentally is similar to the Filipino word. If there is another color that is a hit among girls, aside from the color pink, that would have to be lila. This color can be nicely combined with different shades of pink. Lila is a popular color for my daughter. Each time she sees this color, she would point at it and exclaim, "lila!"

When my daughter turned three last February 28, she wore this dark pink shirt dress with a long sleeved purple pullover under it to the Kindergarten. She also brought along with her a purple balloon to complete her birthday look. It is one of her favorite dresses.

She doesn't have much clothes with the purple or lila color. She mostly has pinks. But I know soon, she would want to select her own clothes herself and would prefer lila over pink. Until that day comes, I would savor the days when I can still dress her up like a doll. Lol!

More Mommy Moments entries can be found at The Mommy Journey blog. Just click on the badge below:

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

When It's Over...

I swear, I would do the things that I have been itching to do once my final exams are over.

There are a thousand things to do on my list right now. My home decorating project has been put on hold because I had to study, study, study. My photobook projects were also put on hold. My three other blogs need updates. These, and thousands of other stuff I need to do when it's all over.

I have three more major exams to go and one is taking place today. The exams will be over on the 31st. I know that is still two weeks from now and I have a lot of studying to do. But when they are over, I am going to proceed with my home decorating project. I am going to buy outdoor lighting (I found some options on lamp click) especially outdoor ceiling lights, plant some flowers in pots, and take out the garden furniture into the balcony. The days are getting warmer and I am sure the balcony will soon become a favorite spot in the house. And since our balcony space has doubled, I think it would also be nice to install some outdoor wall sconces.

Then I would continue working on my photobook projects. If I can remember it correctly, I have 7 photobooks to create. And before I can do all that, I need to organize my photo files. Just organizing the photos is a lot of work, if you are like me who takes countless shots when I am up to it.

Whew! Just thinking about all these things make me wonder, will I ever finish all of those in just three weeks? Yes, I only have a three week break before the summer semester begins. When will I be able to relax then?

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Should I Create A New Blog?

I am taking a short break from studying right now. My memory is just so full of Microbiology, Organic and Inorganic Chemistry stuff so that it cannot absorb additional information anymore. So I am going to release some of the stuff that's in my mind not related to the subjects in question by blogging about it here. That way, I will have some room for more info again when I return studying fifteen minutes from now.

There's a lot of stuff and ideas stirring in my mind, in terms of how to "resurrect" my blogs. I know I have been a bad blogger lately, skipping tasks, failing to update my four blogs on a regular basis, always tardy in posting memes and haven't been actively blog hopping and returning visits and comments. When my final exams are over, I plan to be active on blogging again. And perhaps, add a niche blog, as if maintaining four blogs is not enough.

I know I have a lot of things to consider when I start a new blog. It should have a good domain name, a catchy title, SEO-friendly (a term that is admittedly still so Latin to me) and of course, hosted. I am still looking for a good web hosting provider and have been browsing the net for some good reviews. I want a provider that's reliable, with a round the clock customer service team, reasonable in terms of price, and with a good rating from real users. Anyone got recommendations? And should I decide to create a niche blog, what do you think will be a good niche? I sure could use your inputs and advice.

TCP#82: There's Something About Mary

Hello Couchers! Welcome to another edition of Tuesday Couch Potatoes, a Tuesday movie meme where we post about movies that had us glued on the couch. This Tuesday's theme is Movies with Best Actress Awards.

Without further ado, here's my pick: There's Something About Mary. It's a 1998 comedy film starring Cameron Diaz.It is in this film where Diaz won the 1999 MTV Movie Awards for Best Female Performance. I am a fan of Diaz. I enjoy her characters in every movie she portrays. Charlie's Angels, In Her Shoes, My Best Friend's Wedding, The Sweetest Thing, The Holiday... I have seen them all. But there's something about this movie that just wouldn't let you forget about Mary. I really enjoyed her role as Mary Jensen in the movie There's Something About Mary. Her performance in this movie is so good that it won her not just an MTV Movie Award but also a New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actress, an American Comedy Awards for Best Actress, a Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Best Actress, she also received a Golden Globe nomination for her performance (but lost to Gwyneth Paltrow).

You have to see for yourself how well she played her role. This is one great movie to add on your collection or list and a perfect treat for a relaxing weekend. Speaking of which, I think I will find a copy for this one once my final exams are over!

So what's your pick? Come share it with use here on TCP by leaving your TCP URL in the linky below:
And oh, there will be NO TCP next week, March 22  because I have a major exam. I will leave the linky open until March 28, Monday so you can still post your entry. I will see you all again on March 29 for another round of movies, this time with the theme: Best Director Movies.

So there you have it my dears! As always, thank you for joining me every Tuesday here on TCP. Enjoy the rest of your week and take care!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Quality, Cheap Eyeglasses from Zenni Optical

When I was in high school, I used to wear eyeglasses. I keep getting headaches when I read a lot and cannot see very clearly from afar. When I stopped going to school and started working, I stopped using them because I keep losing and/or destroying them. Once or twice, I forgot that I placed in on my seat and accidentally sat on it. And there it goes, money put to waste. So I lived without eyeglasses since then. I find eyeglasses really expensive, especially if you want to buy the branded ones. But thanks to ZENNI OPTICAL, it is now possible to buy quality, fashionable and cheap eyeglasses. How I wish Zenni Optical was already in the picture years ago. I wouldn't have spent so much money on eyeglasses that are trendy and chic.

If you don't believe me, why don't you check out Eric's review of Zenni Optical? Because Zenni Optical markets its own brand eyeglasses directly to its consumers, one can really get eyeglasses at a very low price. Now that I know about Zenni Optical, I could now insist to my opthalmologist that he give me a prescription for eyeglasses, even if its just reading eyeglasses. You see, my opthalmologist said that nothing is wrong with my eyes and I could live without eyeglasses. Duh, as if he knows what I am going through. I have been having major headaches lately from studying for my final exams and I know it will help me a lot to focus if the headaches are gone.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

TCP#81: Life Is Beautiful

Hello Couchers! Welcome to the March 8th edition of Tuesday Couch Potatoes. Before I proceed to my movie pick for this week's theme: Movies with Best Actor Awards, let me announce first the lucky Coucher who won $5.00 Paypal cash from last week. There were six participants last week, namely:

And the lucky Coucher who won the prize money is Jay-Agent112778! Congratulations! The names I wrote on a piece of paper and drew randomly. Congrats Jay! Please send me an email with your paypal address at anak0430(at)gmail(dot)com.

And now, for my movie pick: Life is Beautiful, which came out in 1998 and won three awards in the 71st Academy Awards: Academy Award for Best Actor, Academy Award for Best Original Dramatic Score and the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Roberto Benigni's performance in this film is something that you should watch. He is deserving of the Best Actor award for his poignant, humorous portrayal of a  carefree Jewish book keeper, Guido Orefice in 1930's Italy, who marries a beautiful school teacher, Dora and live happily together with their son, Giosue, until the Nazi forces arrive in town. This is one of the movies whose title has stuck to me ever since it came out in the big screen. It made me realize that no matter what circumstances we may be in, despite the problems, the sorrows and pains, life will always be beautiful.

What's your movie pick this week? Come and share it with us here on TCP and add your TCP link URL in the linky below:

I hope to see you all again next Tuesday for another round of TCP with the theme: Movies with Best Actress Awards. Thank you all for joining and have a good week ahead!

Fun Things For Kids

My three year old daughter is now so very talkative and active and a joy to be with because she can now do all sorts of stuff. As a mom, I know I have to find ways on how to keep her interested in doing even the simplest things by making it fun for her.

Teaching children how to help around in the house should be fun for them so that they don't see it as a chore but rather as a fun thing to do. Every time I collect the laundry, I would ask my daughter is she could shoot her clothes in the laundry bag. Each time she is able to shoot, she get a point from me plus praises, a hug and lots of kisses. I think she enjoys it.

Another thing that is is fun to do is doing puzzles and hand crafts with them. On lazy days and the kindergarten is closed, I would bring out colorful origami papers and we would fold them into all sorts of things. On fine weather, I would take her out to the nearby playground, and armed with her shovel and molds, she would happily play in the sand box or go slide down the slides and have a go at the swing. I on the other hand, would watch her and imagine her playing in our own backyard, with a marvelous garden designed and maintained by Dallas landscaping. A small man-made pond with fishes in it is something that will be very fun and interesting for my little girl so that will have to be included in my imaginary little haven.

I also let her choose and pick up some of the groceries on our list and let her put it in the grocery cart. She likes it a lot, maybe because it gives her some feeling that she has control of things. Sometimes, she would lead us to the kids section and point out some very cute stephen joseph quilted backpacks, even a Mom won't be able to resist. But since it's not in the budget at the moment, we are firm to tell her that she doesn't need it yet and that we don't have enough money to pay for it. We also allow her to pay the grocery and she would feel like she just achieved something great. Perhaps it gives her a sense of independence.

She also likes to put her clothes on by herself. She is still very slow and I have to be patient just so we wouldn't fight. I sometimes ask her if I can help especially with the buttons and to keep myself from doing the buttons, I would just remember that she is still a small kid, trying to do things on her own. I know soon, she will be capable of doing more things and I guess all a parent can do is be there, and guide.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

TCP#80: The Reader

Hello to all my dear Couchers! I am deeply sorry if I am posting my TCP entry just now. I know you have all been waiting. I had my first final exam yesterday and I was kind of devastated because I didn't do well. I also had to bring my little girl to the pedia for the routine check-up for three year olds, they call it the U3 Untersuchung here, right after my exam so I really had no chance. Yesterday was a very exhausting and disappointing so I had no energy to blog. I know it is a very lame excuse but now I am energized, thanks to the nine hours of sleep I had. =D

Anyway, it's March already and because we just witnessed the Golden Globe and the Academy Awards, might as well make this month's overall theme as "Movies Worthy of the Red Carpet". For this Tuesday, it is Award Winning Movies of 2009. My pick will be The Reader, a drama film released in 2008 starring Kate Winslet which won the Golden Globe 2009 for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role and 81st Academy Award for Best Actress. I chose this movie because it is interesting. It wasn't actually me who found this movie but my husband, he critical reviews very interesting and it has a good rating from the movie critics and reviews. Curiosity is what really made us watch this one.
The movie is set in postwar Germany. Middle-aged Hanna (Winslet) and 15-year-old Michael (Kross) become sexually involved after Hanna cares for him during an illness (she insists he read to her before their encounters--hence the title). She breaks off the forbidden relationship abruptly and the story leaps ahead to an older Michael (Fiennes), now a law student, witnessing Hanna on trial for war crimes relating to the Holocaust. Her involvement in atrocities, her concealed illiteracy, and her past relationship with Michael are pressed to the surface and serve as a way to attempt to understand how awful things can be done by seemingly decent people. This film adaptation of the best-selling novel by Bernhard Schlink has high aspirations but proves a somewhat tricky adaptation to screen. Still, Winslet's performance is a somber and convincing treat. (Synopsis taken from
A note to my readers, this movie is Rated R as it contains nude and sex scenes. If you want to see this one, watch it when the children have all gone to bed. =D

What's your Award Winning Movie for 2009? Come share it with us here on TCP and enter your link in the linky below:
For next week, March 8, we will feature Movies with Best Actor Awards. It doesn't matter which year the movie came out as long as the actor won the best actor award for that movie.

Hope to see you all by then! And oh, because it is the 80th edition of TCP, I decided to hold a little surprise to all who will participate this week. I will be randomly selecting one Coucher and will be giving away $5.00 Paypal Money as my way of thanking you all for helping me get Tuesday Couch Potatoes this far. It is not much I know but it still is five bucks. I will announce the winner next Tuesday when the linky closes. 

Hope you all have a great week! Happy TCP everyone!

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