Saturday, May 01, 2021

Putting together my Covid Care Kit thanks to Watsons 3-Day Vitamin Super Saver Sale

 With the pandemic showing no signs of abating, we'll really have to make sure our bodies are stronger and healthier so we can resist the COVID-19 virus. I wrote a list on what I would do just in case but it never occurred to me to make a special home care kit until VP Leni launched her COVID Care Kit. And this weekend is the perfect time to complete the kit because of the Watsons Vitamin Super Saver Sale!

Get as much as 50% OFF on your vitamins from Watsons 3-Day Vitamin Super Saver Sale on April 30-May 2, 2021. Only the vitamins and minerals are on sale so I'm stocking up on Vitamin C + Zinc and Vitamin D. But as long as I'm on the Watsons website, I might as well buy the medicines on this list (care of the OVP):

1. Phenylpropanolamine Hydrochloride/Chlorphenamine Maleate 325g – For colds accompanied with nasal congestion
2. Paracetamol – For fever and pain relief
3. Carbocisteine – For coughs with phlegm
4. Cetirizine – For allergies and itching
5. Butamirate – For dry coughs (without phlegm)
6. Oral Rehydration Salts (ORS) – To help prevent dehydration
7. Hexetidine Gargle – To help relieve sore throats
8. Vitamin C + Zinc, Calcium + Vitamin D3 – Supplements for recovery

I also need these medical tools in the kit:
1. Digital thermometer – To monitor temperature every 4-8 hours
2. Face mask – To prevent the spread of the virus
3. Pulse oximeter – To monitor oxygen levels
4. Disinfectant – To sanitize surfaces
5. Rubbing alcohol – For disinfection and hand hygiene
6. Trash bag – to dispose separately items used by the patient

The OVP also says to have a monitoring sheet to note down temperature, medication, and symptoms. I like this one created by Jel Directo of Verses: COVID monitoring sheet

So anyway, shop this weekend, mamas! Watsons Vitamin Super Saver Sale is a great chance to stock up on vitamins from Watsons, Potencee, Enervon, Centrum, Conzace, Pedzinc, Neurobion, and more because of the savings of up to 50% we can get!  I added this to my cart:

Okay, one last word from Watsons (and me!): 

"Watsons wants to remind Filipinos to continue taking precautionary measures such as wearing of face mask, washing of hands regularly, and to continue with their healthy lifestyle such as eating right and sleeping well to stay healthy and protected against the virus. Along with these, taking vitamins regularly can help boost our immune system, and help us stay healthy and protected against the virus."

Take advantage of this sale happening for 3 days only. Shop now in any of Watsons 800+ stores nationwide (, online via or mobile app ( or via call & delivery service (

Thursday, April 29, 2021

The Cambridge Family brand color

Blue, blue, their world is blue!

If there's anything that stamps the Cambridges as millennials it's this: They made themselves into a brand. It's such a millennial thing to do - everyone is a brand now. Even I'm told by PR agencies that my brand is the "raw and authentic mama" and my blog color (which used to be nothing) is orange because topazes are orange (uh, they also come in clear, blue, pink, brown, purple, and green). I'm not a millennial but, sure, okay, I like the branding created for me so let's go with it. 

Anyway, back to the Cambridge family. William and Catherine made themselves officially a brand in 2014 when they registered their selves as businesses. According to the Daily Mail, "Kate’s firm is called CE Strathearn – from her names Catherine and Elizabeth and the Countess of Strathearn title awarded by the Queen. William’s is APL Anglesey – after his middle names Arthur Philip Louis and the Welsh island where he and Kate lived after they married." 

Oh, William. What a romantic!

This is the first time a royal family made themselves into a brand (the second one is Harry and Meghan, and they were severely criticized as usual because apparently, only W&K can do it but H&M can't *roll eyes at tabloids and haters*). Their brands are supposedly not about making money but "more about creating a vehicle that could be used in future for specific situations. It is not necessarily about making money – it could be about protection such as the issue of trademarks for example." Their spokesman added, "APL Anglesey and CE Strathearn have been set up to house the intellectual property rights of the Duke and Duchess."

What that means is they won't stop businesses from making commemorative mugs. But if someone uses their image or names and presents them in a bad way (say, in a gossip site or in a show called The Crown), they can sue and stop these shows, movies, tabloids from profiting from them.

Still, their spokespeople don't deny that the Cambridges may create official items that they will sell. Prince Charles has Duchy Originals, an organic farm that sells premium organic goods, for example. So if Catherine ever decides to start a fashion line or launch a photography book (and she has) or William wants to start a  helicopter royal tours thing, they can.

Obviously, a brand needs colors that will establish its identity to its consumers. Coca-Cola is red, Nickelodeon is orange, McDonald's is yellow, Spotify is green, Barbie is pink, and the Cambridge official color is blue. 

I don't know when it started, or if it was consciously decided on. Maybe it was Diana's sapphire ring that became Kate's engagement ring that started it. At that time, I don't think they thought of themselves as a brand yet. But through the years, whenever they are presenting themselves officially, they come out in blue. 

In fact, when there were rumors that the Cambridges will release photos to celebrate their 10th wedding anniversary, I told my friends, "I bet all the sales of my book (buy a copy!), they'll both be in blue." And I was right! Well, I'm not a betting woman and it was a safe bet because those two and their kids are always in blue.

Okay, they're not always in blue. They do wear other colors. I love Kate in bright pink best. Maybe I should do a post on Kate's rainbow wardrobe! But blue is their dominant color. 

I would love to look through Kate's closet and count how many blue things she has! I mean, just look at a few of their royal tours. I love how they usually arrive at a new country in blue OOTDs. 

When their firstborn and heir to the throne, Prince George, was born, the new family was in blue. All their official family photos and Christmas cards? Blue. 

Blue is the official Cambridge color. I like how they're so aware of their branding. It makes them so modern. I wonder how they'll move the ancient and archaic monarchy forward when they finally become King and Queen. Can't wait to see that!

Monday, April 26, 2021

Happy birthday, Aida!

This is Aida. She's my best friend from high school and today is her birthday. 

You've seen her on this blog just a few times. That's because she left the country when we were in college to study medical school in the US, then married and started a family in France, and that's where she's been since. We both married men named Vincent and we are moms of boys! 

And in the last 25 years, we've seen each other maybe 10 times. It's tough to sustain a friendship over distance and time. We weren't there for each other much when we were growing up. Back then, in the 90s and early 2000s, there was only snail mail. Oh, and email of course. We try to catch up but life is a whirlwind of many changes and we have our new friends for those now. But Aida will always be special and I'll tell you why. 

You may be wondering why I chose to start this blog post with a photo of Aida holding my book. Seems like a post celebrating her shouldn't start with promoting something of mine. But that photo says so much about my dear friend. You see, she may be so far away but she always makes sure she stays in touch and supports her friends in whatever we do. Every single thing we achieve, she's the first to be happy for us and to celebrate with us - even though she's so far away! All her friends are so lucky to have someone so thoughtful in our life.

Aida's friendship is more than just words of affirmation from her. She actually does things to make us feel special. She always tries to chat with me on Messenger, but because of the time difference, I very seldom get to say hi back. But it's not like she lacks friends. She has so many friends. She has friends on a global scale! If her friend has a wedding, she will be there, no matter where in the world that wedding is. If a friend wants to meet up, she will buy a plane ticket and fly there. All our high school reunions, she attended. I only went to the last one and I failed to get a photo with her. 

Aida makes everyone feel important. That's why she was the most popular girl in high school. Everyone loved Aida. Boys and girls. Teachers, too. My family loves her. I don't know anyone who doesn't love her.

She's not a pure ray of light, though. She's great at cutting down people with a look. If she doesn't like you or what you said, you're going to know. Oh boy, will you know! In fact, she's the one who told me to be brave with whatever I think and do. I used to be a people-pleaser (sometimes I still am) and Aida told me again and again I can be nice without putting up with bullshit. I learned not to put up with bullshit eventually but it took a while. 

Everyone thinks I'm this brave woman but I was pretty much a very insecure, anxious, and fearful girl. If you're wondering what transformed me, well, first I should give credit to my ever-growing faith in God's love for me. Then to my eternal gratitude, He sent not-so-divine people my way - my husband Vince when I hit my 20s and, before that, there was Aida.

In high school, no one really liked me. I don't know why. I don't want to know why. Honestly, I'm over it. I had a few friends and that was enough. I did notice that one of my friendships made people look at me differently and that was my friendship with Aida. She was the one who called me best friend first, which startled me. She told everyone I was her best friend and I literally saw people get bewildered, get curious, then become nice to me. When you're 14 years old, that means the world. I realized that they thought very highly of Aida and if she loved me then I must be so much more than the box everyone unfairly put me in. People gave me a chance simply because one person vouched for me.

That's a real gift. That's why I try so very hard to be good and fair to other people and to give people a chance because Aida was good and fair to me. Just one person's kindness opened up my world in vast ways. I can't even measure the profound effect that had on my life. What would I be now if I remained that cowering creature that nobody liked? Her love for me changed me. I learned to be unafraid of my intelligence, to speak out, to be funny, to not give a shit about what people thought, to leave everything behind if it was holding me back, to venture out, to love with all my heart, and to be unapologetic about my life. 

Aida was my biggest influence when I was a kid and she may have been a kid herself but her kindness and courage changed me deeply. I hope she knows that. I don't think I ever told her how she changed my life. So I needed to write this so she knows that I see her and what she's done for me.

Dearest Aida, today, on your birthday, I want to say thank you. For standing up for me, for teaching me to love myself, for flying to my wedding, for buying my book and telling everyone about it, for being proud of me, and for being my friend and staying my friend. My life wouldn't be the same without you. I love you and celebrate you and honor you and bless you, Dang. Happy birthday!