Sunday, August 31, 2014

Kids Train to be Everyday Heroes with ​ Cartoon Network’s Ben 10 Hero Academy

Cartoon Network, the leading kids' channel in the Philippines, through its initiative--Ben 10 Hero Academy teaches kids what they must do in certain dangerous situations. The said Ben 10-inspired activity based crash-course was filled with easy-to-learn tips where kids can learn to act wisely in different situations. The said program makes its way to Metro Manila schools from July to August 2014. 

“The Ben 10 Hero Academy takes after the spirit of the hugely popular Ben 10: Omniverse series,” said Nicole Schneiderjohn, Marketing Director, Turner International Asia-Pacific, operator of Cartoon Network Asia. “In using characters like Ben Tennyson, Bloxx and Rook to communicate valuable lessons on safety, we’re able to empower kids in their daily lives through fun and adventure.”
With the Ben 10 Academy host and facilitator

Purple Plum Fairy recently joined Cartoon Network when they held their Ben 10 Academy program at St. Mary's Academy in Pasay, City. Through games and other dynamic activities, students aged 6 to 10 were trained in four modules:
1. Fire Safety
2. Earthquake Preparedness
3. Crime Prevention
4. Road Safety

Students from St. Mary's Academy in Pasay demonstrates what to do during an earthquake

      Kids during the game on stage

A young boy smiles as he claims his prize for winning in a game

Kids had loads of fun as they participated in various games and activities. The said event was also graced by Ronald McDonald and Zesto mascot to the delight of the kids. Best of all, they've also had that opportunity to get face time with their favorite Ben 10 characters, Bloxx and Ben Tennyson himself. In fact, during the Ben 10 Hero Academy event at St. Mary's, even the teachers couldn't resist having a photo opportunity with the cute Bloxx. 

Faculty members from St. Mary's Academy couldn't get enough of Bloxx.

Well, I'm also guilty of such as your Purple Plum Fairy also had a photo with him. I also had a lot of fun seeing the kids with such happiness on their faces--the kind of genuine joy that money could not buy. Oh, how I wish we've also had that same fun crash course training like Ben 10 Academy during my time in grade school. 

Purple Plum Fairy had this photo opp with Bloxx as well.

Ronald McDonald wowed the kids as he taught them emergency signals.
Zesto drink mascot says hi to his young audience.
    Ben Tennyson flashes his famous Omnitrix. 

Find out if Ben 10 Hero Academy is heading to your school by logging on to
Cartoon Network’s Ben 10 Hero Academy is co-sponsored by Boom, Toy Kingdom, Zest-O Milk-O Choc-O, and Seven Seas. Patron sponsors: Jack n' Jill Knots, Jack N’ Jill Wiggles, Lipps, McDonald’s, Del Monte, Topps, and Rebisco Wafer Time.  

Lucky students brought home bags of awesome goodies from the sponsors.

Cartoon Network is the leading kids’ channel in the Philippines. Its dedicated Philippine feed offers the best in animated entertainment, drawing from the world's largest cartoon library of Warner Bros., MGM and Hanna-Barbara titles. Cartoon Network also showcases popular original series such as Ben 10, The Amazing World of Gumball and Adventure Time. Cartoon Network is available in 27 countries throughout Asia Pacific and is currently seen in more than 75 million pay-TV homes. Online, Cartoon Network reaches nearly three million unique visitors a month in the region. In Asia Pacific, Cartoon Network is owned and operated by Turner Broadcasting System Asia Pacific, Inc., a Time Warner company.

Special thanks to the lovely ladies of Havas Agatep: Ice Vivar and Cielo Remorin.

Disclaimer: I am not compensated for this post. Opinions expressed are my own.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Tune Hotel Quezon City Review: High Quality Yet Affordable Hotel in Timog

Business trips could sometimes be very demanding--imagine the stressful hectic schedules and being away from your loved ones for days or a week. Corporate travelers are usually being sheltered in a hotel that provides not only convenience and easier access to their business destinations as well as proximity to dining spots, shopping, entertainment centers, among many others. Of course, value for money remains to be a major consideration for business travelers. The Philippines had its fair share of travelers in the past few years, Tune Hotel by Red Planet Group has seen the need for more affordable hotels that are conveniently located in the heart of the city. 

Tune Hotel has started a chain of hotels across Asia and Europe and continues to expand all over the country to address the needs of frequent business travelers on a budget as well as leisure travelers and families on vacation. One thing that I love about Tune Hotel is that all their locations are very well-positioned so that their guests won't have a hard time getting from one place to another. 

Strategically located in the bustling Timog area, Tune Hotel is just a stone's throw away from different government offices and agencies such as Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), National Statistics Office (NSO), Social Security Services (SSS), Quezon City Hall and is between two giant networks stations, namely GMA 7 and ABS-CBN. Checking-in at Tune Hotel Quezon City is also ideal if you need to process documents or important papers in the above mentioned government agencies. 

My family and I recently had a relaxing staycation at Tune Hotel Quezon City. And I'd have to say we were pretty impressed by what we had seen and experienced. Tune Hotel Quezon City boasts of modern facilities, well-appointed, cozy and clean rooms that are well designed--24 count duvet bed were made with weary travelers in mind while luxurious jet set hot and cold showers are similar to those found in five star hotels. Each room also comes with a foldable laptop table for guests who had to do some extra work during his/her stay and a flat screen TV. And best of all, each room has a strong 24/7 wifi connection, so sending important emails will never be a problem while you can update all your social media circle as well. Although Tune Hotel Quezon City does not have a restaurant (unlike their Ermita, Manila branch that has an Irish restaurant), fret not. They can coordinate with food delivery service at your request. 24/7 Convenient stores such as 7 Eleven (just beside the hotel's lobby) while Mini Stop are just nearby. And while you're checked-in, I strongly suggest that you take advantage of the rows of restaurants, bars and chows within the vicinity of Timog. There's so much to see and explore in the area. If there's nothing you fancy in Timog, you can head towards Tomas Morato where specialty restaurants, spa, and other commercial establishments abound. 

So what sets Tune Hotel Quezon City apart from the other hotels we've slept in? Their rate is indeed traveler-friendly as their rooms' amenities can be adjusted according to your needs. For example, you'd rather use the ceiling fan (there's one installed in each room) rather than the air-condition, it means you can get the said room for a lower price. But even if you'd prefer using all the amenities that comes in each room (like the hair dryer), Tune Hotel remains to be the most affordable yet they do not sacrifice the quality of the hotel. Tune Hotel has high standard of customer service from well-trained staff. It's like getting a small room in a five star hotel and getting the same service and courtesy but for an affordable price. 

The only downside, in my opinion, is that Tune Hotel Quezon City does not have handle bars in their enclosed glass bathrooms. Personally, I think handle bars or rubber grip mats are important so as not to slip or trip while a guest is taking a bath. I have become very particular with such things after my Mom and I met an accident last April 2014 which had required her to walk with a cane. During our stay at Tune Hotel Quezon City, I kept reminding my Mom to be very careful. I wish that the people behind Tune Hotels will soon consider putting either a handle bar or a rubber grip mat on their bathrooms as consideration for people like my Mom or those with disabilities. My Mom has hip prosthesis after she suffered a hip fracture from the said accident so she had to be really careful with slippery/wet floors. But other than that, I loved how Tune Hotel made our stay relaxing and memorable. The staff showed courtesy and had this genuine warmth as they welcome each guests with a smile. They made sure someone opens the door for you, they even helped us carry our bags and assisted us all the way to our room. Each small detail made us feel right at home and more comfortable. 

Tune Hotel by Red Planet Group continues to grow and expand as a budget-friendly hotel. They guarantee excellent service + wonderful accommodations which nevertheless showcases genuine Filipino hospitality across the country and beyond. I am no longer surprised that Tune Hotel had been gaining popularity and loyal clientele in the Philippines. 

Tune Hotels are located in Angeles City, Aseana, Cagayan De Oro, Cebu, Davao, Ermita, Manila, Makati, Ortigas and Quezon City. They are also found in Thailand, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, England, Scotland, India and Australia. 

Special thanks to Mr. Benjamin Martinez--Director of Sales and Marketing, Red Planet Hotels, Ms. Sherry Bartolome--Manager, Tune Hotel Quezon City, Joy Cabrillos and Abbie Abadiez. 

Disclaimer: I am not compensated for this post. Opinions expressed are 100% my own. 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Nutrilite Kids by Amway: Essential Vitamin Supplement for Kids

Mothers would always want to give what's best for their kids. As parents, we'd scrutinize products even up to its little details to assure us of our kids' safety and its effectiveness. I'm sure a lot of moms will be able to relate to what I am talking about. In a tropical country like ours, one can't simply predict what weather will it be like. One minute it's raining then after a while, you'd feel the debilitating heat of the sun. That's why we should be mindful of illness especially with our kids. Some kids sleep later than they should because they tend to stay up really late. When kids are sleep deprived they tend to skip breakfast as well as to the point of going to school on an empty stomach. Cafeteria foods or concessionaires are often unappetizing for kids. So usually they'd pick unhealthy junk foods or fast foods instead. It's a good thing Amway has a line of nutritional supplements specifically with kids in mind such as Nutrilite Kids Chewable Vitamins and Minerals. 

With the pressure from school + picking unhealthy/wrong choices of foods, most kids become undernourished, sleep deprived, and to top it off, they can and often do play in the rain. This combination can and does often lead to tired, sleepy kids with somewhat vulnerable immune systems, a great combination for contracting viral or even bacterial infections.  
One of the most effective ways to safeguard kids’ health is to make sure they get the right amounts of vitamins and minerals.  The water soluble vitamins (Vitamin B Complex, Vitamin C) are of particular importance as these are the ones that are most quickly consumed by active people and active kids.  Vitamin B Complex is essential to proper brain function, and in bridging nutrition gaps, while Vitamin C is an unbeatable immune system booster.          
“The challenge for parents is actually getting their kids to eat vegetables and fruits that are rich in Vitamins.  Even getting kids to take vitamin supplements can be challenging especially those who are more finicky” said Joy Marie Bacay, Nutrilite Brand Manager.
“Nutrilite’ Kiddie Pack which includes Kids Chewable Multivitamins and Minerals, Active 8 Beverage Crystals, Kids Chewable Concentrated Fruits & Vegetables and Acerola C, makes it easier for parents to ensure that their kids are properly nourished, especially during the abrupt changes brought about by the rainy and back-to-school seasons.”, Bacay said.
Scientifically formulated with the right amounts of vitamins and minerals and other nutrients kids often miss out on due to lifestyle or eating preferences.
Nutrilite Kids Chewable Vitamins and Minerals are tablets that come in fun, soccer ball design. This supplement provides 11 vitamins, beta carotene, and 4 minerals. It also contains phytonutrients from Nutrilite Acerola concentrate and tropical fruit concentrates, for additional nutritional benefits.  Acerola cherries are known to be one of the world’s richest sources of Vitamin C and this found in Acerola C.
Nutrilite Kids Chewable Concentrated Fruits and Vegetables are chewable tablets made sweet and tangy –a formula that kids like. One tablet delivers naturally sourced phytonutrients equivalent to five servings of fruits and vegetables. It is also packed with xylitol so it does not promote tooth decay.
Nutrilite Active 8 Beverages Crystals is a mix to replace softdrinks. Each glass provides seven B vitamins plus natural vitamin C.
With Nutrilite products, kids actually look forward to taking their vitamins.
For more information about Amway products, visit or call tel. (02)8148181 / 8935113 (GMA). Dial toll-free 1-800-1-888-AMWY (2699). LIKE us on Facebook: Email us at
About Amway Philippines
Amway Philippines is the local affiliate of Amway Corporation, one of the world’s largest direct selling businesses founded in 1959 and headquartered in Ada, Michigan, offering consumer products and business opportunities in more than 100 countries and territories worldwide. In the Philippines, Amway now has six (6) distributor centers nationwide which makes available over 100 product options to more than 50,000 Amway Independent Business Owners. Amway product offerings include its flagship brands, NUTRILITE, the only global vitamin and mineral brand to grow, harvest and process plants on its own certified organic farms, and ARTISTRY, one of the world’s top five, largest-selling, prestige brands of facial skincare and color cosmetics. Amway products also include a wide range of personal care, homecare, and agricultural products.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

AMD Unleashes World’s Most Powerful Server GPU for HPC

AMD FirePro™ S9150 server card delivers up to 2.53 TFLOPS of peak double-precision floating point performance for intense compute workloads, and 10.8 GFLOPS double precision-per-watt, up to 77% more performance/watt than the competition

AMD announced the AMD FirePro S9150 server card – the most powerful server Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) ever built for High Performance Computing¹. Based on the AMD Graphics Core Next (GCN) architecture, the first AMD architecture designed specifically with compute workloads in mind, the AMD FirePro S9150 server card is the first server card to support enhanced double precision and break the 2.0 TFLOPS double precision barrier¹,². With 16GB of GDDR5 memory  – 33 percent more than the competition –  and maximum power consumption of 235 watts, AMD FirePro S9150 server GPUs provide supercomputers with massive compute performance while maximizing available power budgets.

“Today’s supercomputers feature an increasing mix of GPUs, CPUs and co-processors to achieve great performance, and many of them are being implemented in an environmentally responsible manner to help reduce power and water consumption,” said David Cummings, senior director and general manager, professional graphics, AMD. “Designed for large scale multi-GPU support and unmatched compute performance, AMD FirePro S9150 ushers in a new era of supercomputing. Its memory configuration, compute capabilities and performance per watt are unmatched in its class, and can help take supercomputers to the next level of performance and energy efficiency.” 

The AMD FirePro S9150 server card is supported by a powerful software ecosystem, enabling developers to better harness its compute performance. In addition to AMD support for OpenCL™, including support for OpenCL™ 2.0 planned later this year, AMD announced a collaboration with Pathscale to support OpenMP 4.0 for AMD FirePro S9150 and selected other AMD FirePro graphics cards.

“Pathscale’s ENZO Compiler with OpenMP 4.0 and support for C, C++, and Fortran is used by customers in the Oil and Gas, Computational Science, Computer Aided Engineering, and other HPC segments,” said Christopher Bergstrom, CTO, Pathscale. “Our support for the AMD FirePro S9150 will enable these customers to benefit from the tremendous compute performance of AMD’s new server GPU while leveraging their existing investment in OpenMP software.”

“Having developed a supercomputer that ranked number two on The Green500 list, it takes exceptional compute performance and efficiency to achieve that status -- we couldn’t have done it without AMD FirePro S-Series server GPUs,” said Professor Dr. Volker Lindenstruth, Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies, Goethe University, Frankfurt. “We’ve been putting the AMD FirePro S9150 through its paces and we’re blown away by the performance-per-watt. Any supercomputer that leverages massive compute power with the AMD FirePro S9150 and makes a run for the top of the Green500 list stands a very good chance of succeeding.” 

“We’re currently testing the AMD FirePro™ S9150 server card and hands down it’s the fastest HPC GPU accelerator we’ve ever tested. We’re even more excited by the prospects of combining its raw compute performance with OpenCL 2.0 later this year,” said Simon McIntosh-Smith, head of the Microelectronics Research Group at the University of Bristol. “Our research benefits from an open and royalty-free API, and we’re committed to OpenCL™ to accelerate our computations. We applaud AMD’s planned support for OpenCL 2.0. New features such as Shared Virtual Memory and Nested Parallelism will allow us to make even better use of GPUs to increase performance and efficiency.” 

”Supermicro offers the industry’s widest range of GPU server solutions optimized for HPC and supercomputing in 1U, 2U, 3U, 4U SuperServer and 7U SuperBlade platforms,” said Don Clegg, Vice President of Marketing and Business Development at Supermicro. “Supermicro Green Computing solutions, featuring AMD’s latest AMD FirePro S9150 and AMD FirePro S9050, enable extreme compute density with support for up to 6x GPUs per node in 4U dual node, dual processor configurations, maximizing performance per watt, per dollar, per square foot.” 

“ASUS is pleased to feature AMD FirePro S9150 accelerators to enable server workstations with dedicated and reliable functionality matched with double precision floating point performance,” said Tom Lin, general manager, ASUS. “We’re dedicated to offering our customers solutions that deliver the most performance possible, and the energy efficiency and performance-per-watt of the AMD FirePro S9150 are an added bonus our customers will greatly appreciate.”“AMD FirePro S9150 delivers exceptional double- and single-precision floating point performance. Unlike other GPU accelerators, AMD FirePro S9150 features enhanced double precision, eliminating the need to buy a more expensive accelerator to get similar performance,” said Etay Lee, general manager at GIGABYTE’s Network & Communications Division. “Together with AMD, our product delivers the right solution for the market to enable power-efficient performance for supercomputer-class results.”

“AMD FirePro S9150 GPU accelerators will be an outstanding addition to our product line, allowing us to offer our customers solutions that deliver maximum performance,” said Albert Mu, vice president of MiTAC International Corp.’s TYAN Business Unit. “During the testing and evaluation of the AMD FirePro S9150 with TYAN servers, our team was impressed with the sheer horsepower. It far exceeded our expectations and our customers will be anxious to take advantage of that horsepower to accelerate their compute-intensive workloads.”

The AMD FirePro S9150 server GPU features:
5.07 TFLOPS of peak single-precision floating point performance – up to 18 percent more than the competition¹
Maximum double-precision floating point performance resulting in 2.53 TFLOPS peak double-precision compute performance – half of its peak single precision performance. 
Industry leading memory configuration – 16GB GDDR5 memory, 512-bit memory interface and up to 320 GB/s memory bandwidth 
2,816 stream processors (44 GCN compute units)
Error Correcting Code Memory support (external)
Ready to support OpenCL™ 2.04
235W maximum power consumption
AMD STREAM technology
Additionally, AMD introduced the new AMD FirePro™ S9050 server GPU with 12GB of ultra-fast GDDR5 memory, ECC Memory support, cutting-edge graphics and compute performance. The new server GPU delivers 3.23 TFLOPS of peak single precision, plus 806 GFLOPS of double precision floating-point performance for effortless processing of challenging compute workloads. 

The AMD FirePro S9050 server GPU features:
12GB GDDR5 memory, 384-bit memory interface and up to 264 GB/s memory bandwidth
1,792 stream processors (28 GCN compute units)
OpenCL 1.2 support
Error Correcting Code Memory support (internal and external)
225W maximum power consumption
Both of the AMD FirePro S9150 and S9050 server GPUs feature PCIe® x16 dual slot form factors and passive thermal solutions more compatible with server environments. Additionally, both cards support AMD STREAM technology which powers the ecosystem that enables AMD FirePro™ S-Series server GPUs to be used for compute intensive workflows leveraging the massively parallel processing power of AMD GPUs, and to accelerate many applications beyond just graphics.

"AMD now offers industry leading solutions in professional workstation and server graphics," added Adrian Thompson, VP of Marketing for SAPPHIRE Technology, AMD's Exclusive Global Distribution Partner for AMD FirePro professional graphics. "With these new families of products, SAPPHIRE is steadily expanding its reach into new markets and applications areas."

AMD FirePro S9150 and S9050 are expected to be available for purchase in Q3 from AMD global distribution partner SAPPHIRE Technology, and compatible servers and motherboards for the AMD FirePro S9150 are also available from server integrators ASUS, GIGABYTE, Supermicro and TYAN.

Supporting Resources
Learn more about AMD FirePro™ S9150 server GPU
Learn more about AMD FirePro™ S9050 server GPU
Learn more about AMD STREAM technology
Become a fan of AMD on Facebook
Follow AMD professional graphics on Twitter- @AMDFirePro

About AMD 
AMD designs and integrates technology that powers millions of intelligent devices, including personal computers, tablets, g ame consoles and cloud servers that define the new era of surround computing. AMD solutions enable people everywhere to realize the full potential of their favorite devices and applications to push the boundaries of what is possible. For more information, visit

Friday, August 22, 2014

The Scoop On Suicide: Deconstructing Depression

There was once a young model whom I've worked with a long time ago while I was still working as an intern in a popular magazine. I used to think she had everything a girl could wish for: a very pretty face, svelte figure, intelligence, wealth, gorgeous boyfriend, wonderful company of friends and a flourishing career. She was considered an "It-Girl", the kind of girl you'd love to hang out and be seen with because she's really fun to be with and very popular. You could see her face practically everywhere: in glossy magazine spreads, on TV, on the billboards--in fact, she's a celebrity on her own right. I'd love to be in her shoes because she really seemed to have been blessed in almost all aspects of life. But alas, one day she had shocked everyone when it was reported that she had jumped to her death from her condominium unit because of depression. She was supposed to have a bright future ahead of her--but she was gone too soon. And recently, Hollywood actor/comedian Robin Williams had also shocked everyone when he was found dead on his home who apparently committed suicide due to substance use disorder (addiction) and depression. In the local showbiz, even megastar Sharon Cuneta has publicly admitted that she's indeed going through "one of the lowest points of her life and career"--which quoting her own words, "a state of depression and loneliness". Now, come to think of it, isn't alarming that even Filipinos whom other Western countries considered as "one of the happiest people/race on  this planet" are also affected by depression? It only goes to show one thing, folks: NO ONE IS SPARED FROM DEPRESSION. 

What is depression? "Depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest. Also called major depression, major depressive disorder or clinical depression, it affects how you feel, think and behave and can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems. You may have trouble doing normal day-to-day activities, and depression may make you feel as if life isn't worth living," said Dr. Dinah Nadera, Psychiatrist, Consultant for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support, Office of the World Health Organization Rep for the Philippines during the recent Scoop On Suicide conference held at Serye Cafe Filipino, Quezon City Circle.  

More than just a bout of the blues, depression isn't just a weakness, nor is it something that you can simply "snap out" of. Depression may require long-term treatment. But don't get discouraged. Most people with depression feel better with medication, psychological counseling or both. Other treatments also may help such as pep talk therapy, art based intervention therapy among many others. 

Although depression may occur only one time during your life, usually people have multiple episodes of depression. During these episodes, symptoms occur most of the day, nearly every day and may include:

*Feelings of sadness, emptiness or unhappiness
*Angry outbursts, irritability or frustration, even over small matters
* Loss of interest or pleasure in normal activities, such as sex
*Sleep disturbances, including insomnia or sleeping too much

*Tiredness and lack of energy, so that even small tasks take extra effort
*Changes in appetite — often reduced appetite and weight loss, but increased cravings for food and weight gain in some people
*Anxiety, agitation or restlessness — for example, excessive worrying, pacing, hand-wringing or an inability to sit still
*Slowed thinking, speaking or body movements
*Feelings of worthlessness or guilt, fixating on past failures or blaming yourself for things that are not your responsibility
*Trouble thinking, concentrating, making decisions and remembering things
*Frequent thoughts of death, suicidal thoughts, suicide attempts or suicide
*Unexplained physical problems, such as back pain or headaches
*For some people, depression symptoms are so severe that it's obvious something isn't right. Other people feel generally miserable or unhappy without really knowing why.

In younger children, symptoms of depression may include sadness, irritability, clinginess, worry, aches and pains, refusing to go to school, or being underweight.
In teens, symptoms may include sadness, irritability, feeling negative and worthless, anger, poor performance or poor attendance at school, feeling misunderstood and extremely sensitive, using drugs or alcohol, eating or sleeping too much, self-harm, loss of interest in normal activities, and avoidance of social interaction.

Depression may occur with other mental health conditions, such as anxiety, eating disorders, substance abuse or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Long lasting or recurrent, severe, depression can lead to suicide. People with mild depression can still be treated without medicines. When depression is moderate or severe that's the only time that they may need medication & non-pharmacological treatments. 

Depression is not a normal part of growing older and it should never be taken lightly. Unfortunately, depression often goes undiagnosed and untreated in older adults, and they may feel reluctant to seek help. Symptoms of depression may be different or less obvious in older adults, including:

Memory difficulties or personality changes
Fatigue, loss of appetite, sleep problems, aches or loss of interest in sex, which are not caused by a medical condition or medication
Often wanting to stay at home, rather than going out to socialize or doing new things
Suicidal thinking or feelings, especially in older men

If you feel depressed, make an appointment to see your doctor as soon as you can. Depression often gets worse if it isn't treated. Untreated depression can lead to other mental and physical health problems or troubles in other areas of your life. Feelings of depression can also lead to suicide. If you're reluctant to seek treatment, talk to a friend or loved one, a health care professional, a faith leader, or someone else you trust.

You have to ADMIT first to yourself that you need HELP.  Reach out to a close friend or loved one. Contact a minister, a spiritual leader or someone in your faith community.

There are also several organizations which can help you by offering FREE and CONFIDENTIAL 24/7 telephone counseling such as IN TOUCH COMMUNITY SERVICES. There is HOPE at the other end of the line with their Crisis Line hotline. They can help you deal with depression, grief and loss, domestic violence, relationship problems, substance abuse, sexual assault, homosexuality, transitional adjustments, problems with school or career, stress, illness, thoughts of suicide etc. 

If you prefer a personal face to face counseling, In Touch Services also offers them. Psychiatrist, psychologist, social workers and experienced and trained counselors from
In Touch Community Services are waiting for your call at the other end of the line. 

Call CRISIS LINE hotline numbers —893-7603
GLOBE DUO: 0917-8001123/09175067314
SUN: 0922-8938944/0922-3468776

They could also be reached online via email: or log on to their site at

InTouch Community Services is within the premises of Holy Trinity Church but they are non-sectarian. They welcome any religion. They are located at 48 McKinley Rd. Makati. 
Office Hours is from Monday-Friday from 9am-5pm. 

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Banana Peel Family Fun Ville at Robinsons Place Manila Midtown Atrium: Where Families Bonded Over The Weekend

Banana Peel--Everyone's Favorite Flipflops whose patterns and unique designs had long been imitated but has never been equaled recently held an event called "Banana Peel Family Fun Ville" at the Midtown Atrium of Robinsons Place Manila. It was an event that was open to the public provided that they make a Php500 single receipt purchase of any Banana Peel products during the promo period. 

Banana Peel has truly transformed the Robinsons Midtown Atrium into a Family Fun Ville with loads of activities for the whole family to enjoy. There was Mommy Avenue specifically for all Mommies to relax and spend their "me-time" as their kids were busy doing other fun stuff in their respective area. Lulu Nails provided free nail cleaning and polish to mothers while Mary Kay gave out free facial and makeover as well. 

If Moms had their own area, Daddy District are also a hit among dads where they could surf the net using Sun Cellular's free wifi access. Of course, Banana Peel's Family Fun Ville won't be complete without the Kids Alley. Kids had a blast with lots of activities such as Trolli coloring area, Lalaloopsy Photo booth, Hot Wheels and Mega Bloks play area, Cra-Z-Loom craft making area where kids and those kids-at-heart tried their hands on the latest craze that hit the Metro called rainbow loombands. Instax camera also had a photo booth where guests were given mini instax printouts. Oh, and of course, there were awesome Banana Peel products sold during the said event too. 

Other sponsors such as King Sue, Pan de Manila, Owl Coffee, Lindt Chocolates, Delimondo, and M and M's Chocolates also provided freebies and samples to all the guests. Cute mascots such as M and M's red chocolate, King Sue, Owl Coffee and Lalaloopsy also graced the said event. There were also meet and greet sessions with colorful Lalaloopsy mascots. And I just couldn't resist to have my picture taken with those lovely doll mascots that I had to have the courage to come up on stage and have my photo taken with them. Well, at first, I was a bit hesitant because I'm too old for Lalaloppsy dolls. So I took a  few selfie pics with them on my background. But eventually, I decided to take the opportunity after someone from Banana Peel had taken her pics with them. I could just simply say that I've followed her lead anyway. 

There were also raffled off prizes from Banana Peel, Lulu Nails, Hawk Bags, HotWheels, and Delimondo gift packs received by lucky winners. My aunt whom I tagged along with me won a Lulu Nail gift certificate worth Php200. She was lucky enough to have won a prize because I hadn't been lucky in raffles. 

I've had my digits polished in lime green at the Lulu Nails booth. There were a lot of choices but I decided to pick green because I haven't tried that color on my fingernails yet. But what has truly mad my day was when I've tried my hand on some crafting. I've heard and seen a lot of those loom bands everywhere but I haven't given it a try until that day at the Banana Peel Family Fun Ville. I went over the Cra-Z-Loom booth and asked the lady to teach me how to do it. I felt a bit awkward at first seeing that while the other kids around me were busy doing their looms without much assistance, I knew I needed more assistance because it's my first time to do such a thing. Plus, I knew I've never been "artistic or crafty". 

Eventually, I got the hang of it. It's really fun and so easy to do. I no longer wonder why it had become such a huge craze in the Philippines. Although what I've done was only considered as 'basic' but for me, it's really cool. I even made a few mistakes because I mistakenly weaved a wrong color (I must have been really tired to become color blind!) unto the loom. But it's not that obvious anyway so it's okay.

Overall, Banana Peel Family Fun Ville was an event where families had a great bonding over the weekend. Guests all had fun with wonderful memories to keep. Thanks to everyone's favorite flipflops, Banana Peel for giving us such a wonderful weekend activity for the entire family. Follow Banana Peel on Instagram via @bananapeelofcl and on Facebook at Visit their website too at to become updated to their current promos, contests and events. 

Special thanks to Banana Peel and to Ms. Aica Ting. 

Disclaimer: I am not compensated for this post. Opinions expressed are 100% my own. 

Books All-You-Can at CSM Publishing Booth at the Manila International Book Fair this September 17 to 21!

If there are eat-all-you-can buffets in restaurants, bookworms and bibliophiles will also be happy to know that there will also be such a thing as "Books-All-You-Can" at the much-awaited Manila International Book Fair. Happening next month, save these dates: September 17 to 21, 2014 to be held at the SMX Convention Center, SM Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay City. 

CSM Publishing, one of the leading publishers in the country today will be having a booth at the Manila International Book Fair where these "Books-All-You-Can" for Php100 will be held. This is truly a piece of good news for every book lover. Imagine getting all the amazing book titles from different genres by only paying Php100? It's really getting your money's worth plus more. In fact, it's like getting all the books that you want for a steal price. 

While you're there, allow me to give you some recommendations, please look for CSM Publishing's "Life in the Middle" by Marlene Legaspi Munar and "As You Enter The Race" by Malou Salumbides. I've read those books and I know you will not only be entertained by both books but will also be learning a lot from them. 

I love the month of September for a lot of reasons: 1. It is my birth month. 2. My beloved Kyle was also born on that month. 3. It is the time when bookstores cut their prices for selected books. 4. It is during this month when they hold the Manila International Book Fair. Growing up, My Mom and I see to it that we visit the Manila International Book Fair. Being there was like me being on a huge toy or candy store. They have amazing prices and loads of books to choose from. Don't forget to bring your eco bags, ok? 

So, Mommies, mark your calendars. The trip to the Manila International Book Fair will all be worth it, I promise you. It's also the best time to let your kids find the books that they are interested with (at discounted prices!)

See you there! 


Disclaimer: I am not compensated for this post. Opinions expressed are 100% my own. 

Friday, August 15, 2014


They've wowed children from all parts of the globe. I bet you've probably memorized at least one or two of their songs without really meaning to--they've conquered the hearts of kids and those kids-at-heart too. Admit it, your kids are fans (and could also be addicted to) of Hi-5! Yes folks, Hi-5--the popular group from the well-loved children's show from Australia composed of five awesome individuals will be back in the Philippines this December in time for the holiday season! Now, don't be surprised now to hear very young Filipino pre-schoolers imitating an Australian accent--that's because they've been fans of Hi-5. Youngsters as well as their supportive parents will be happy to know that Vivre Fort Entertainment brings the Hi-5 gang once more to Manila and will be performing live their Hi-5 House Hits, this time at a bigger venue. Hi-5 will be performing at the Newport Performing Arts Theater in Resorts World Manila to further accommodate more fans. 

I had been very fortunate to meet four of them last year during a press conference held for media and bloggers. Since my beloved Kyle also grew up with their songs such as L.O.V.E. as well as other danceable songs, I could totally relate to other Mommy bloggers who went ga-ga over the Hi-5 gang. Kyle, who's now eleven may be too old for Hi-5, so he had passed on the habit of watching Hi-5 to younger sister Icy who just turned seven. Both kids love the Hi-5 gang as well as Jup Jup, the lovely purple character from the Australian children's TV show. In fact, as a mom, I think I owe a lot to the Hi-5 gang (as well as the production behind it) for helping a lot of kids learn from their TV show. Well, I believe you can't really be old enough to love Hi-5. I even had the chance to have my picture taken with them and be part of the group. (I became one of the Hi-5 since there were only four of them at the time of the presscon). 

The cast of Hi-5 with your Purple Plum Fairy

Hi-5 House Hits will be the biggest concert that will be featuring the show's most popular, most favorite and best loved songs for the audience to sing and dance with them. It's bound to be a very interactive show for everyone to enjoy. It promises to be loads of fun and laughter as your Hi-5 friends will be singing in solos, in duets and in trios. Of course, the show won't be complete without Chats and Jup Jup. The two would also be gracing the said show. 

So come along and join the Hi-5 gang on their biggest concert ever "Hi-5 House Hits" which is happening from December 19 to 21,2014 at the Newport Performing Arts Theater in Resorts World Manila. Purchase your tickets ahead of the rest for this much-awaited family event. HSBC Credit and Debit cardholders enjoy first pick on choice seats at 15% OFF from July 22 to August 22, 2014. Visit for more details. Terms and conditions apply. 

So again, Mommies, mark those dates red, December 19 to 21,2014 for a fun-filled day with the awesome Hi-5 group. 

For tickets, visit or call 891-9999. Sign up at to become a priority customer and receive special offers and promos. 

Disclaimer: I am not compensated for this post. Opinions expressed are 100% my own.


Banana Peel Family Fun Ville at Midtown Atrium, Robinsons Place Manila on April 17!

Fans of Banana Peel, the county's leading Filipino brand of flip-flops will converge this coming April 17, 2014 as it holds Banana Peel Family Fun Ville at the Midtown Atrium of Robinsons Place Manila. It promises to be a fun-filled day for the entire family with lots of surprises in store for everyone. 

To get in on the fun and be able to participate, customers simply need to make a Php500 worth-single receipt purchase of Banana Peel and/or Banana Peel Licensed products from participating Robinsons Department Store Branches: Manila, Galleria, Metro East, Makati, and Forum. Customer is entitled to one entry pass (good for three persons) to the Banana Peel Family Fun Ville event. Promo duration is from July 25 to August 17, 2014.

So mark that Sunday, August 17, 2014, get on your favorite Banana Peel flipflops and come over to Robinsons Place Midtown Atrium for an awesome day at the Banana Peel Family Fun Ville! Don't fail to miss it! It's going to be lots of F-U-N! See you there! 

Disclaimer: i am not compensated for this post. Opinions expressed are my own.


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