Some say I’m a whisk taker, some say I’m kneady. But I’m just a person that bakes. Making you crack up whilst you’re cracking eggs, this blog has fun with buns, kitchen goss and not a soggy bottom in sight. So pick up your whisk and don your wavy kitchen grams (apron), let’s get baking. I am focuses on fun and easy baking. It’s a place to explore recipes, desserts, decorating and even photography with a few giveaways sprinkled in along the way. You may even find yourself smiling from all the sweetness. But here’s the great thing about baking: If you can follow instructions, you can do it. We’ve always been too intimidated to try our hand at homemade bread (all that kneading and proofing!), but dead-simple recipe is a total game changer. All you have to do is mix the ingredients, leave them to rest for 12 to 18 hours and bake. Done and done. I personally love to bake, primarily because everything is so dang delicious and warm. So I hate to hear beginners giving up on their baking dreams after being stumped by a particularly difficult recipe. The key to becoming a great baker is practice and starting off with the right baking recipes. These easy baking recipes can be thrown together by anyone, and will get you more comfortable with your own baking prowess. You’ll be a baking champion in no time, I swear.
CRINKLE COOKIES are perfect for the beginner baker because you don’t need any skill to get that awesome crinkle effect. This recipe from my baking addiction will look delicious even if you think you messed up along the way.
CARROT CAKE with cream cheese frosting makes it easy to enjoy a classic and share with my entire family.
Success in your career will depend heavily upon how much you genuinely enjoy baking. Decide Where You Want to Work. Once you know the types of baked goods you want to make, choose an arena for your career. Find a Job. Now that you know what you want to do, it’s time to put it into action.
Traveling while working remotely can be a slog at times, but let’s face it: Those of us who do it are lucky. Having the freedom to work with a flexible schedule, financial freedom and the ability to do something you love –so long as you get the job done–is a luxury many people only dream of.
But even though working remotely has many positive attributes, it does require a particular type of personality and skills to productively and successfully stay on the job. Not all have the same but mostly these are the common: Good communication skills, organization skills, resourceful, critical thinking skills, pro-activeness, independent and computer or tech savvy. But you won’t be able to do the job while having just these personalities. You have to have skills or the hardware skills to be able to do your job.
So here are the job-skills that you need to have in order to travel the world while working:
You must be good both in speaking and writing. For many of us, this is a default. Most companies who are hiring work from home employees need someone who can speak on behalf of them even without your presence in the office — someone who can represent the company anywhere in the world. You will be spending more time on Skype, Microsoft Word and other Customer Relationship Management programs. Why English? Why not French? Or Spanish? These are also considered as one of the most spoken languages of the world, right? Because English is the language of multinational companies.
Now this is a very broad topic. I myself cannot define what Marketing really is. It depends on the type of employer you will land. How everyone looks at Marketing at present is diverse and has different executions. In general, you should know how to do the following:
Advertising // Blogging // Branding // Copywriting // Email Marketing // Marketing // Google AdSense // Google AdWords // Google Webmaster // Recording Audio // SEO // Social Media Marketing // Telemarketing // Traffic Geyser // Video Editing
Nope, I have zero knowledge in this field. However, when I was travelling around the world, I met a lot of travelers who are computer geeks and took Information Technology in college. They told me their story. Most of them own their own companies (start-ups) or either have a tight client-base. Brace yourself: the skills required in this field will make your nose bleed.
Autoresponders // Backing up mysql database // Drupal // FTP // Google Analytics // HTML // Joomla // Managing Servers // Microsoft Excel // Web Pages // WordPress
You are not alone. The only thing that I know in this section is Microsoft Excel and I am not even really good at it.
If you are the artsy type, then this is for you. Imagine creating an image while you are sitting on a beach in Bali compared to drafting in an office: What do you see? Different things. I am not a graphic designer but my mind worked more outside the office. If you have in-depth knowledge with the following, you can have this as a remote job!
Adobe After Effects // Corel // CSS // Dreamweaver // Fireworks // Flash // Logo Design // Maya // Pagemaker // Photoshop // Videography // Web Page Design
It gets harder and harder as as we go further with these skills. I believe that programming is one of the highest paid skills in the planet of the remote. Nobody can learn this quickly compared to the other skills stated above. To be able to obtain a job in programming, you must know:
FINANCE & MANAGEMENT
Yes, banker! You can work remotely too! Stop believing that you are only meant for banks or other financial institutions! Many multinational companies are looking for you even if it’s just help do their taxes! I am sure you are knowledgeable of the following skills so go ahead, read on.
Now this one is for everyone, I guess. In the remote world, this is what we refer to as Virtual Assistant jobs where most of the level of your work is secretarial. This is perfect for mothers who want to stay at home and take care of their children or anyone traveling as long as knowledgeable of Admin job.
Customer Support // Data Entry // Event Planner // Medical Transcription // Research // Telephone // Handling // Time Management // Travel Planning
Most companies who hire for this type of job are from the USA. Ergo, you will have to know all about Real Estate in the country including websites, listings, postings, influencers, etc. Below are the skills that are required to obtain a position in this field:
Craigslist Posting // Marketing // Direct Mail Marketing // Posting Listings Online // Prospecting // REO Asset Management // Telephone Support // Transaction Processing // Trustee Sale Tracking // Real Estate Experience
When applying for an online job, you will be asked about your knowledge in all of the skills above but don’t worry if you don’t have experience. Let’s put it this way: you should have at least 3 from each item however, the geeky stuff is a bit impossible to achieve. Be honest and let them know if you are a superstar in a certain skill or have zero knowledge about it. Learn continually – there is always one more thing to learn!
WHAT’S IN IT FOR YOU?
Does it still make sense for you to commute everyday to work? Experience the dreadful traffic or the polluted city? Are you still comfortable arriving in the office, doing the same routine everyday and having endless fights with your boss because you’re not happy? Or you want to wake up in the morning saying, “good morning, Bali! It’s a beautiful day!” and start working by the beach with your nicely brewed coffee? Most people don’t find these types of job fulfilling. Why? It’s because we always seek approval from other people. We look at the type of job we do as something that defines us. We always mind what other people think and it’s the nature of human. But I think we should all assess of something that makes us happy. We don’t need approval from others. The only approval we need is from ourselves.
My phone’s alarm clock is ringing again this morning. I turned it off and got out of bed, went to the bathroom for shower. I’m also preparing my 6 year old son for school before I leave for work. On my way to the office, there was heavy traffic due to a vehicular accident. I can see the faces of the passengers from the jeep being worried as all of us will surely arrive late to our offices. Checking the time of our watches repeatedly, some making sighs and others complaining about the heavy traffic of Metro Manila.
As I get off from the jeep, I run towards the location of our bio-metric hoping to reach at least the grace period for time in but I was one minute late and no matter how short or long, it’s still a late subject for company memo. I walked slowly disappointed for that one minute late as I approached my work station. I opened my computer, held a mirror wiping my sweat looking at my face, seeing myself for the same scenario for almost 8 years.
I’ve been with my corporate job for almost 8 years. I can say that I am lucky to have a good environment at work, I have a good manager and I’m okay with my office mates. There are work pressures, bad times and work problems but those are all part of any work. I started doing my daily routine, checking my daily reports, attending to phone and personal inquiries of our clients. Lunch time, I called the nanny of my two kids and checked on them. I talked to my eldest son, asking how he performed for the school activity and being sorry that I was not able to see his performance. Got home from work, my kids were already sleeping and as I watched them I realized that this should not be the scenario for another 8 years.
I am in a mom guilt moment that time. I was in a struggle wanting to be a full time mom but needs the work I have to sustain the needs of my family. It was an awful feeling that every working mom has been going through once in a while. I was down for a moment but I pulled myself back realizing that being guilty was a wasted energy and will only attract negativity. I may not be the best mom but as I continue to work hard for my children, I am already a good mother and that was my motivation to get up for another day.
I maybe in the same phase or struggle at this moment but I am not giving up. I will learn more soon so I can have a good work balance and have more time with my children. As long as I love my children and I continue to do my best for them there is nothing to be guilty of, I am good and I am enough.
“Grandmothers are voices of the past, role models of the present and opens the doors to the future.” Helen Ketchum
With all the global tribulations that humanity is facing in modern history today, I decide to dedicate this blog to my grandma, whom I call “ Lola Vita “ , as a breath of fresh air from all the hustle and bustle. To set the record straight, this is a tribute for my grandma but she is still alive up to now. I hope that whoever reads this blog, will find in their heart the importance of family, specifically the grandmas, and what this blog is all about.
Having lived for 38 years and counting, my life revolves around the two strongest women I know that ever exists, my Lola Vita and my mom Nelia. I don’t know, but writing this blog makes me teary eyed. It invokes a web of emotions, ranging from happy to sad and scared. I am always mushy whenever I talk about these two people, whom I look up to the most. I will just make another blog for my mom Nelia.
Let me start my narrative in chronology- from my elementary to high school, post-graduate and the present.
I lived in the province of Agusan del Norte, in the municipality of Buenavista. Our place was quite laid-back. With all the green rice fields, untamed landscape of the mountainside, and the briny breeze of the abundant seas, I could say that people in our place were calm, respectful and congenial. However, my life growing up was not privileged. It was a constant wrestle of what food to put on our table on a daily basis. It was really hard life. But, without my Lola Vita, it could have been a totally different ugly face of poverty. Revisiting these memories of my childhood drew a flashback of hardships and triumphs.
During my elementary years, my Lola Vita had played an essential role, not only financially, but also an icon for my morals and values formation. She had sold anything under the sun. If she taught she can earn a peso or even a cent out of it, then my Lola had definitely found a way to market it. She had absolutely been a jack of all trades. Talking about money, she had been really good at that. She had not earn much but she was able to send her seven children to college single-handedly. My Lolo Cesar( Lola Vita’s husband) died when my mom was still in high school. Today, I kept wondering how she had managed her finances while raising seven children. I am baffled up to now. She really did a remarkable job as a parent and was indeed pedestal-worthy.
Whenever I asked for something, my Lola Vita had not given anything to me right away. I needed to toil and sweat first. I remembered one time, I asked Lola for a xylophone because joined the drum and bugle in our school. She gave it to me; however, the condition was that I needed to dry ten sacks of rice grains in the street. At that time, I pitied myself having to undergo all the ordeals before I can get something I want. I also asked myself why my classmates were able to afford all the materials things they needed without having them to work for it. Nevertheless, my Lola Vita had never failed to reward us all her grandchildren after all the hard work. She had done an exemplary job in balancing hard work and reward. She treated us by going to city in her favorite restaurant, at that time there was no Jollibee or Greenwich. Whenever she brought us to the restaurant, she had reminded us always that she would only pay for one cup of rice. So, if I wanted to eat more, I needed to bring my own rice but I had to hide it in the bag. I graduated 1st honorable mention in elementary. I could remember, during my graduation, Lola Vita was there and standing so proud of what I achieved. Those memories in my elementary had a special part in my heart.
My high school had been fun-filled. This time was different, because I developed my own circle of friends that I pretty much got along. I remembered when my parents had a big fight; I would go to my Lola Vita to asked money for school. She was not hesitant to give me because she knew back then that I was serious about my studies. During summer, as a growing up teenager, I envied some of my classmates because they had things like organizer, nice notebook, and nice lunchbox. I would go to my Lola Vita and asked for these things. She would give me chores to do, and if I could finish it, the she would give me what I needed. My Lola Vita had always been there for me and the rest of her grandchildren every step of the way. My high school had not been completed without my Lola Vita in the picture.
After I graduated college, I realized a lot of things that my Lola Vita taught me and those were not gone to waste. I valued money and I did not squander my earnings. I always prioritized needs over wants. I learned to give respect to the people around me regardless of their position in the society or what their job was. All of these, I paid gratitude to my Lola Vita.
Fast forward to present, today, year 2020, my Lola Vita is 90 years old and physically getting weaker day by day. I am having a hard time reconciling my thoughts that her days are limited. As to when she will still be with us, no one knows the answer. She now has Alzheimer’s disease and she could not recognize me anymore. It torments me so much; that looking back, the person I used to see who is agile and full of life is now lying in her bed staring back at me like I am a blank wall with all her memories erased. It seems like her memories are stolen from her, kept in a void ,and lost in the abyss of a black hole that cannot be retrieved. I don’t know how I could ever repay her for all the good things she has done for me. I wanted to tell her that I am so lucky and grateful, and I love her so much, but it has no use now because she could not even recognize me.
Whenever I go to her room, I would play classic Visayan songs, songs of Pilita Coralez, and that would lighten up her face and started singing these songs. It is a bittersweet emotion because I am happy that she still has memories of these songs ,but ,sad as well that all the memories of me, she already has forgotten. I wanted to teach her about how to use the gadgets and apps like Facebook but she would just stare at me like I am not even there in front of her. My mom is the one taking care of her full-time and I will just take turn when my mom needs to go out and do some errands.My Lola Vita now wears diaper because she no longer can feel the call of nature. It pains me so much every time I ask my Lola if she is okay and she would reply to me that her body aches. If only she could transfer all her physical pain, I would gladly do that.
Just recently, this March 2020, she got confined in the hospital because she is having hard time breathing. She is diagnosed with pneumonia and enlarged heart. As she is in her bed, with all these equipment to her mouth to help her breath with ease, like oxygen and dextrose, it is a a very depressing sight to look at. She could hardly talk and move. We , her family, are all gathered together around her to give her moral support and make her feel that we all love her and we still want her to fight and be with us. Days gone by and she is slowly gaining back her strength. She is back on her feet after being confined for four agonizing days. I thank God for giving Lola another chance to live and spend more time with us.
What makes life precarious is that there are things that we don’t really have control. We are just here passing in this world for a time and it has an ending. I will just cherish the remaining time that my Lola still has for us and up to when, well, only god knows. I just wish there will be a day wherein my Lola could be strong again and with a sharp memory, I would really tell her how much I love her and I will be forever grateful. I will not be the person I am today if not because of her. She occupies a big chunk in my life. Thank you so much Lola for everything and as long as you are still with us, I will always play the Visayan songs you like. I always wanted to see the smile on your face. It is priceless and something money can’t buy.
My Lola Vita is an indestructible bond that holds our family together. She is my angel and my hero.
BABYWEARING is holding or carrying a baby or young child using a cloth baby carrier. Holding babies is natural and universal; baby carriers make it easier and more comfortable, allowing parents and caregivers to hold or carry their children while attending to the daily tasks of living.
Babywearing allows me to bring my 8 month old daughter wherever I go without the agony of carrying her with my bare arms. It also allows me multitask since I am hands free. At times, I breastfeed my daughter in a carrier as well. My baby loves it too – she sleeps well in a baby carrier and even stops crying or being fussy. Being close to me, it creates a deeper bond between me and my child.
CHOOSING YOUR BABY CARRIER
There are lots of baby carriers available in the market. For someone new to babywearing, choosing can be a bit overwhelming. There are lots of factors to consider, but it’s best if you can try one before you buy.
Sling meets are usually organized by babywearing support groups. Local babywearing consultants are available if you want to seek professional help. You can opt to rent baby carriers from local retailers at a minimum fee. Some brands are also available in department stores or in baby fairs.
Here are the common types of carriers:
A Ring sling is a long fabric with attached rings on one end. It is a one shoulder carry and is easier to put the baby in and out. This type of carrier is advisable for newborns.
A wrap is a long piece of fabric that you need to wrap around you and your baby. By tying the ends, you are creating a snug and safe place for your baby. Among the types of carriers, wraps (especially woven wraps) are very versatile since there are various carry types to try on.
Soft structured carrier (SSC)
SSC or buckled carriers are the most common type of carrier. The waistband and straps are adjustable in order to adjust to the size of the wearer. The width of the panel must be considered to ensure that it supports ergonomic positioning. This type of carrier can be easily shared among members of the family. SSCs now come in fully adjustable types wherein you can usually use it from birth to toddlerhood.
PROPER AND SAFE BABYWEARING
In babywearing, you don’t just pop in your child in a carrier. His safety must be considered first above everything else. Here is an acronym which most babywearers remember because it’s easy to recall:
Your baby must also be positioned properly to optimize the benefits. Baby’s knees must always be higher than the bum, his knees spread out in order to allow healthy development. This is what we commonly call as the M-position or a deep seat.
Forward facing carriers and carrier’s where baby’s legs are dangling (commonly called as narrow-based carriers) should be avoided, as they do not support proper positioning.
OUR BABYWEARING JOURNEY
It started when I attended a sling meet near our place organized by a mom blogger in partnership with a local carrier brand. It helped me gain the confidence to wear my preemie baby in a ring sling and woven wrap as early as 29 days. This was even before she reached day 1 of her corrected age. So yes, babies can be worn in a carrier staring day 1 as long as the carrier used is age appropriate. I started with a ring sling, now we also have an SSC and a woven wrap.
Until today, we are enjoying the convenience of babywearing my daughter wherever we go. My husband, although not frequent, babywears too. I also spread babywearing awareness by reaching out to soon-to-be parents in our work place and in my friends list.
“Uy ang cute cute naman ng baby mo, mag-aartista yan paglaki.” (Your child is so cute; he will become an actor when he grows up.)
These are the exact same words I often hear when my son, Lulu was still a baby, but I often just shrug it off because I thought it was something next to impossible. Until one day while strolling around Mall of Asia, a guy approached us and introduced himself as an agent inviting Lulu for a VTR. After a thorough discussion with my family, we decided to give it a go since there’s nothing to lose anyway.
He was only 11 months old when he had his VTR file. I remember at that time, I had to carry him while the photographer takes his photos and video file while I introduce his name, age, gender, etc. I thought well that was easy – Lulu did a great job and didn’t have any tantrums. The camera just loved him. We bid goodbye to the agent and we were advised that we’ll hear from them once a project is matched and approved for him.
3 months went by when I suddenly got a message saying that Lulu was scheduled for a PRINT AD SHOOT FOR A REAL ESTATE. I was ecstatic! I never thought he will actually land a project. So that was the first time, my son who was 14 months old at that time got his very 1st paycheck. And the rest as they say is history.
Lulu did not only land several print ad projects after but he also joined and won several modelling contests like Robinsons Model Search, Mossimo Kids CastingCall and our favorite, Gingersnaps Model Search. I never had to buy him clothes during those years because winning these contests meant that he will be given monthly supplies of clothing for FREE. This is most certainly true with Gingersnaps, he was given Php 5,000 worth of clothing which is somehow equivalent to at least 10 pieces of clothes every month.
To say that everything went smoothly during his modelling years will be a lie. There was a time when we had to stop from accepting projects and this was when he was between 3 to 5 years old. He suddenly grew scared of seeing cameras and one time threw a tantrum in one of his shoots. This was the sign for me to stop until he’s ready to model again. If that time will come again was uncertain to me at that time but my son’s well-being is and will always be at utmost importance.
For those parents who are considering joining their children in the modelling industry, here are some tips and advice from me:
Evaluate your child if he is really comfortable working in front of the camera and with other people.
If your kid is acting out or throwing a tantrum during a shoot, do not create a scene especially in front of the clients; do not hurt your children to make them follow you ( I have personally witnessed some horror situations like this back stage and behind the scenes of some shoots.)
If you feel that your child is not interested in modelling anymore, do not push him; rather support him with his other interests.
You shouldn’t pay for VTR filing and DOLE permits – these are FREE and care of the agent/ client. (Department of Labor and Employment requires children below 15 years old to apply for a child working permit every time they have a project.)
Save your child’s professional fees/ talent fees; after all they are the one who worked for it, NOT YOU. Get him a savings account. (One of the requirements to secure a child’s working permit is a savings account under your child’s name. They check it every time you apply for a new project and make sure that his last project’s talent fee is deposited.)
Do not pressure your child; let him enjoy the experience
Lulu eventually returned to modelling when he was about 6 years old. He gained his confidence and self-esteem through the years of doing photoshoots and fashion shows. It taught him to become more responsible, committed and be professional. It made him develop patience especially that not all shoots and fashion shows finish within the schedule – this is not just a virtue but a LIFE SKILL. At a very young age, he learned that not everything will be given to him but he has to work for it. He values hard work and the rewards and payments that came with it. He was able to learn how to save his hard-earned money. These among many others are some of the things he learned through the years of becoming a professional model.
Now that he is 11 years old and stands 5 feet 5 inches, he rarely gets projects nowadays because he is in that “in between stage “wherein he’s not considered a child anymore but not yet a full pledged teenager either. He currently enjoys being a part of his school chorale group and training basketball at the same time.
No one can really dictate what your child should become when he grows up; what we can only do as parents is to support and guide our children throughout his journey from childhood to adulthood.
When I was young i love making things with my own hands. Drawing, painting, sewing, and creating crafts from scratch, and making it something beautiful and useful. Until i reach this age, i still love crafting and its made me happy whenever i see the output of my works.
I didn’t imagine that this passion of mine will be part of my wedding. Of course its a wedding, it has to be beautiful and meaningful.
Being an Artist i want my works to be part of my wedding. That’s why i decided to do the flowers for my entourage and also for my bridal bouquet. And almost all the crafts in my wedding even the props for the little ones.
But that’s not the reason why i did that. It is also to save money and being practical. Real flowers withers in time but artificial serves as remembrance.
And now my bridal bouquet is now well restored in our house as a souvenir, it is place on a wide frame to preserve its proportion and beauty.
Every time i see it, I remember the most memorable day of my life as a lady. The day we cherished and the moment we’ve spent together with my loved ones.
From that day , my heart and my hand unite, My Passion and My Love.
These past days, I have been seeing posts about how proud my batch mates are, as their children graduated from high school and some from college. I feel happy for them but this is not my case.
I started my journey as a first time mom only at the age of 38. For the past two years, I had won the challenge of breastfeeding and running after her when my daughter started walking. And this year, I’m facing the preschooler challenge!
Here are some tips I got from my sister.
Bring your child with you to the school a few times before the class starts.
Mia becomes really more excited when she sees the colorful classroom! She tries sitting on the chair, writing on the blackboard and keep looking at the different pictures on the wall.
Adjust the daily routine before the class begins.
I now give Mia a bath after breakfast. She now knows she will dress up for school starting next week.
Believe and trust your child’s teachers.
I had a one on one talk with Mia’s teacher. And I feel more comfortable now as her teacher sets an expectation. I feel assured that her teachers don’t only have the expertise but more importantly have a passion for teaching toddlers.
Arrive early at school and leave promptly.
Leaving Mia for the first time in school won’t be easy. To be honest, it will be easy for Mia but not for me. Lol! My sister told me to arrive at least 10 minutes early so Mia can explore and get comfortable with the other children. Bid a loving “See you later.” and leave.
Enjoy quality time for yourself.
Mia will be at school for 2 hours daily. It’s best to spend this time to relax and refuel. Simple Truth says it best: We must commit to our own well-being and self-care, lest our flames flicker out. So take some time, sweet sisters, to rest, recoup, relax and regroup.
My journey of having a preschooler just begun. I know there’s so much more to learn. And I would love to hear your experiences and best practices too as we go along the way to mastery.
“Stress happens when you think you have to figure out everything all at once. Breathe. You’re strong. You got this. Take it day by day”
We have been experiencing Covid 19 pandemic for half a year now and its effects have been challenging to us. The transition to the new normal has not been readily embraced by many.The pandemic has created a lot of chaos in our community and uncertainties within ourselves. We faced challenges with our jobs, finances, health and social aspects and these drive us crazy as we don’t know what lies ahead.My friend it is perfectly fine to be anxious at this time of our life.Anxiety is a way of coping from any danger but too much of it will definitely be detrimental to your overall health.
Here are some ways for you to maintain your sanity and be productive in times of crisis.
1. Be aware that you are not alone in this pandemic.
What happens to us now is overwhelming and mind fogging. We can’t help but succumb to loneliness and unknowingly we are already nurturing pessimism.It becomes our truth and we live in fear day by day. Get out of that spiral negativism and one way for that is to think that you are not alone in this crisis. Globally, we are affected and we have been struggling with a degree of anxiety. Your feelings are normal and it is fine to feel that way.
2.Practice gratitude and appreciate what you have
This pandemic has shown us different scenarios that has tests our ability to see the silver linings. From death rates to rising new cases, unpredictable restrictions in each community,losing jobs and being stranded to certain community.It’s valid to feel hopeless and frustrated.We to tend to blame the government or ourselves for not preparing for emergencies like these.But have you tried to look on the brighter side in these.When you were working have you been wishing for a quality time with your loved ones?During busy days have you wished for a pause in your life to appreciate what you have. This is the perfect time to have quality time with your family.It does not need to be expensive to get together with your loved ones.
3. Enough Sleep
Some of our problems and stress are magnified due to lack of sleep. When you practice having enough sleep it helps you to recharge and think clearly.Sometimes we get irritable and we are making a mountain out of a molehill simply because we lack sleep.
4.Connect with your family and friends
Connecting with your family and your friends gives the opportunity to discuss your problems and gather your support system which is vital at this moment of crisis.Having a support through your family and friends provides a sense of belongingness and a sense of purpose.
5. Connect with nature and your pets.
By simply seeing another living creature gives a reason to appreciate life and other living things. Nature calms your inner being and pets gives happy hormones.
“Your calm mind is the ultimate weapon against your challenges. So relax.” —Bryant Mcgill
6.Listen to your music of choice
Music is definitely a way to communicate with your inner soul. Through this you express and unload your stress in a healthy way.
7.Meditate and pray.
Meditation not only relaxes you but it gives you the opportunity to clear your clouded mind and enables you to think outside the box.Praying on the other hand gives you hope that everything will be fine and what has been happening has a purpose and that we should always be looking forward to.
It’s definitely tough at this time considering that we don’t have answers yet to when it will end.If we dwell on this we will not enjoy the present because we keep worrying about the future. It’s vital to take one step at a time and enjoy each moment.Change is constant and have faith that soon this will end.
Work-life balance is a term used for the idea that you need time for both work and other aspects of life, whether those are family-related or personal interests. It is not an easy task to achieve work-life balance in today’s unpredictable and fast-paced business world. Increasingly more connected through technology and social media, it is becoming more and more difficult to separate work from our personal lives. It is commonplace to check emails at all hours, take business calls, work on our laptops on weekends, and taking care of our children every day. Employers expect more from their people, which leads to them feeling more pressure to achieve greater results and this might be struggling to find the balance.Some of the common reasons that lead to poor work-life balance include:
Some of the common reasons that lead to a poor work-life balance include:
Increased responsibilities at work
Working longer hours
Increased responsibilities at home
Tips to create a better work-life balance:
There is no ‘perfect’ work-life balance.
Don’t strive for the perfect schedule; strive for a realistic one. You might focus more on work, while other days you might have more time and energy to pursue your hobbies or spend time with your loved ones.
Find a job that you love most.
If you hate what you do, you aren’t going to be happy, plain, and simple. You don’t need to love every aspect of your job but it needs to be exciting enough and give more interest to what you do.
Prioritize your health.
Physical, emotional, and mental health is our main concern. Prioritize first our health will make a better employee, person, and to our family.
Don’t be afraid to unplug.
Cutting ties with the outside world from time to time allows us to recover from weekly stress and gives us space for other thoughts and ideas to emerge.
Take a vacation.
It is important to take time off to physically and mentally recharge. Time to relax, travel beautiful places, and think peacefully without worries. Spending time with your family is one of the most memorable moments in our life. Others love to travel because traveling is the best way to relieve stress and anxiety. It helps you to transform, explore new things, meet different cultures, and to learn more about yourself.
Make time for yourself and your loved ones.
No matter how hectic your schedule might be, you ultimately have control of your time and life. Prioritize the activities and hobbies that make you happy.
Set boundaries and work hours.
Set boundaries of yourself and your work, to avoid burnout.
Set goals and priorities.
Focus and stick to them the most productive at work and block that time off for your most important work-related activities.
Harmonious work-life balance is important to improve not only our physical, emotional, and mental well-being, but it’s also important for our career and this will help more confident and productive. We desire to succeed professionally can push as to set aside our well-being and taking time ourselves to find our true happiness and spending time with our family.
All of these techniques or tips will help positively impact your family, team’s work performance, productivity, and workplace happiness.
” A journey of 1000 miles starts with a single step.”
It was more than ten years ago that my husband was offered a job abroad. I was due to give birth anytime when he accepted and left for his new job. It became a struggle to be in a long-distance relationship. He was only able to come home every 2-3 months but only stayed for a few days. This became our new normal. Luckily, I was not holding an office job and was a full-time mom to our newborn baby.
For two straight years, my husband worked overseas. One time during his leave from work, he brought up the idea of moving abroad and leaving the life we have in the Philippines. Our son then was only less than 2 years old. Before we knew it, we were already preparing to move. All we wanted was never to be apart again. Family is what matters most after all.
The transition wasn’t that easy. We could only afford to rent a Master’s bedroom as it would be too expensive to get a whole flat. We had housemates and shared payables like rent and utility bills.
My kid was only 2 years old. I had to be a full-time mom to a toddler and take care of household chores. Back home, I was used to having help.
Working was not an option. It would be too impractical to get a yaya. I also vowed to be a hands-on mom and spend more quality time with my family.
Good thing, my son who will turn 3 the following year was eligible to attend a Playgroup in a local school. He was to spend time in school for 2 hours every day. It was during this time that I got to spend some quality time with myself! (Finally, some “me” time!). Living in another country for the first time should not stop you from doing the usual things you enjoy doing back home.
Let me share some of the things I did during my first few years in a foreign country.
Do some self-improvement.Enroll in an exercise class or get a gym membership. This will be an opportunity to meet new people and develop friendships with other people with different nationalities. I also got into running and joined in marathon events.
Develop or practice a hobby you wanted to do for the longest time.Back in Manila, I enrolled in some culinary/baking courses. I decided to apply what I have learned and did a lot of baking.
Earn a little from your hobby if you can. A colleague of my husband asked me to bake cookies for her to give away to friends as she had just given birth. I remembered baking for 3 days in a row. I earned a few hundred dollars from that.
Try to learn a new language. Though this is not for everyone. You can enroll in some conversational language classes offered in community centers, which I did.
Volunteer work.May it be in the community where you are at or at a church you attend. There will always be opportunities to do ‘unpaid’ work. I joined the residents’ community group and partook in some activities.
Work part-time if possible.When your kid can already attend regular school, you can try applying for part-time jobs. I did some part-time at a local pharmacy doing cashier work. My next-door neighbor (yes, a local), was nice enough to collect my son from kindergarten and let him stay at her place until my husband arrived home from work.
Fast forward to today, stay at home moms have a lot more options. Online courses and jobs are readily available as compared ten years ago. Technology is also far more advanced. Now we have faster internet and 4G on our mobile phones.
I may be considered a late bloomer, but we never grow old learning a new skill or upgrading to a 2.0 version of ourselves. Online courses like General Virtual Assistance (GVA) offered by FHmoms give opportunities to young and old alike. I feel “empowered’ by being armed with the newest tools and web applications. This somehow makes me more confident to re-enter the workforce. My goal after I finish my GVA course? Nothing fixed yet, maybe enroll in another course? =)
Your wings already exist all you have to do is fly..- unkown
Where to go after the pandemic? Yah! Together, let’s look forward that one day we can go out and will be able to breathe the ocean air and will be able to embrace the sun.
Now, let me give you some top destinations that you can visit after the pandemic.
is the oldest city in the Philippines, located in the Province of Cebu. It is often called the “Queen City of the South”. Cebu is the main center of Christianity in the Philippines. You can experience a different kind of adventure, from historical places to underwater marine life.
One of the best challenging adventures you can try in Cebu is the canyoneering tour to Kawasan falls. It is a complete action activity that puts you in an adrenaline rush from swimming to hiking, climbing and cliff diving.
If you are looking for a beach, sand and sun, Bantayan Island or Malapascua Island will surely capture your heart.
HOW TO GO:
The fastest way to reach Cebu City is by plane, you can book a direct flight to Mactan International Airport. From the airport you can take a regular cab that will take you to the city proper. Usually the travel time is 45 minutes to 60 minutes.
If you have more free time you can take a side trip to Bohol. You can travel by sea and take a ferry with a travel time of 2 hours or by land that will take 4 hours to 5 hours.
is located in the province of Palawan, Philippines that is best known for world-class diving of WWII Japanese shipwreck, it also offers limestone karst landscapes, crystal-clear freshwater lakes and shallow-water coral reefs.
HOW TO GO:
You have two options when travelling to Coron. You can fly from Manila to Busuanga Airport. From the airport you can take a jeepney for about 1 hour to Coron town proper. The other option is by ferry with a travel time of 11 hours.
3. DUMAGUETE CITY
It is known as The City of Gentle People because of being hospitable and kind-hearted of the locals. One of the main attractions in Dumaguete is Apo Island, you have the chance to experience seeing the turtles up close, you can also swim with them, bring your snorkels to enjoy the colorful coral gardens.
Have you heard the Maldives of the Philippines? You heard it right and it is located in Dumaguete, just ride a Ceres bus going to Bais City then take a tricycle going to Canibol Wharf or Capinahan Wharf.
Before going check the weather updates and tide forecast it will help you to plan your itinerary.
Don’t miss visiting Siquijor Island, from Dumaguete port you can choose a Roro or a fast craft getting to Siquijor proper. Then rent a habal habal or tricycle to get around on an island.
Before going home don’t forget to try their famous buttercream meringue with chopped cashew nuts dessert also called silvanas in Sans Rival Cakes and Pastries, located in the heart of Dumaguete City.
HOW TO GO:
From Manila the best option is to take a 50 minutes direct flight to Sibulan Airport. There’s also a once a week ferry from Manila to Dumaguete, the travel time is 26 hours.
“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.”
Many of us have transitioned to working from home during these uncertain times. It is important that you remain productive while working from home. Now that our home has turned into our offices, it is a bit harder to separate our work life from our personal life. We are working from home but let us also remember that we have roles to play. It is important to maintain a work life balance for us not to feel burnout between our work and home life.
“Work life balance is not an entitlement or benefit. Your company cannot give it to you, you must create it for yourself”
ESTABLISH A MORNING ROUTINE
Set up a morning routine that you can count on from the minute you wake up in the morning to start your day in the right way. Waking up early in the morning , having coffee, eating breakfast, and meditating is kind of a routine. Get fully ready for the day, get dressed and pretend that you’re actually going to work. Getting a project started early can be the key to making progress throughout the day.
CREATE A QUITE WORKSPACE
It is really enticing to work from your bed, as it is the most comfortable place in your house but beware of spots that are too comfy, otherwise you might find yourself back in bed. It is easy to get distracted in an environment that you usually associate with relaxation. Create a designated spot for your work station that makes you feel calm, capable and motivated. As we prepare for the new normal, quiet workplace is very important. Having a space meant for work can help you stay focused and more productive.
MAKE A TO-DO LIST
It is important to list down the things you are supposed to do in a day. Managing tasks is done by maintaining a to-do list for everyday. It will help you to keep focus and prioritize your task without putting too much pressure on yourself. Time is very essential to one’s life, so you should learn how to use it wisely and effectively whether you are working or doing personal activities.
The practice of maintaining a to-do list is very helpful to manage time efficiently and productively.
TAKE SHORT BREAK
It is also important to take a break from work just what you’re doing in the office. Use your beak to get away from the desk, go get some air, refresh and relax your mind. It can help you lessen stress that can lead to being overwhelm. Don’t force yourself to work nonstop just to accomplish a tasks because our body and mind needs to take breaks to reset and restore our energy.
You might have given the privilege to work from home but that doesn’t mean you work all day long. Stick to the normal office hours to help balance work and other responsibilities.
It is really challenging for us to set an appropriate boundaries especially when our job and our personal life are literally under the same roof. Boundaries aren’t just a sign of a healthy relationship; they’re a sign of self-respect. Healthy people in your life respect boundaries. So give yourself the permission to set healthy boundaries because sometimes you have to say NO to others and YES to yourself, consider what you can tolerate and accept and what makes you feel uncomfortable or stressed.
“Daring to set boundaries is about having the courage to love ourselves even when we risk disappointing others”.
Self-care is about pampering ourselves when we feel overwhelmed. Your work, relationship and health are all a priority in your life, but it is very important to make time for yourself. Schedule time to focus on your needs to feel better. Even when you feel like you don’t have time to squeeze in one more thing, make self-care a priority. When you’re caring for all aspects of yourself, you’ll find that you are able to operate more effectively and efficiently.
Putting yourself first also gives you the “energy, peace of mind and positive outlook that might help you feel more productive at work.
A healthy work life balance allows time for work and all the other aspects of your life. It is something that you can achieve if you want to. Create a sustainable lifestyle and strike a balance between your work and personal life to be able to enjoy life to the fullest.
Are you a stay at home working mom? Are you tired and stressed especially on trying to get out of the rat race? Do you want something different but you feel like you’re going nowhere without progress?
Relax! We are all in different situations but every working mom needs the right mindset to take it all on. To cheer you on your tough days, I think you need some encouraging words to get you in the groove. Here are some motivational quotes I’ve collected to give you a little extra encouragement to get through the day.
1. “Believe you can and you’re halfway there.” – Theodore Roosevelt
Set a goal. Believe in yourself. All the hard works and sacrifices will be worth it until it’s done.
2. “There is no way to be a perfect mother and a million ways to be a good one.” – Jill Churchill
Being a mother is a tough and tireless job. Don’t doubt your ability as a mother. There are a million ways for you to do something for your family.
3.“There is no perfect way to be a good mother. Each situation is unique. Each mother has different challenges, different skills and abilities, and certainly different children. What matters is that a mother loves her children deeply” – Elder M. Russell Ballard
Motherhood is never easy. Every stage has unexpected challenges. From pregnancy, giving birth, getting them ready for school, guiding them for choosing their careers. Mother’s love is unconditional and will never give you up in every situation despite the trials and the lessons.
4.“Being a mother is learning about strengths you didn’t know you had and dealing with fears you never knew existed” – Linda Wooten
You had never thought that becoming a mother can show you an image that you had never seen before. You’ll understand more if you’re already a mother. There is so much that goes into becoming and being a mother. We become strong, even stronger than we were before, and that is a testament to the love we have for our children. That strength is something to be in awe of; it teaches us and our kids, and it doesn’t go unnoticed.
5. “The most precious jewels you’ll ever have around your neck are the arms of your children.” – Anonymous
No matter what kind of jewelry you own – gold, silver, diamonds, or pearls, nothing will ever substitute for the value of a child. Giving them a life can only add value and meaning to your existence. It is a selfless act with immeasurable worth.
6.“To the world, you are a mother, but to your family, you are the world” – Unknown
This a sweet reminder that you must celebrate being a mother every day. They go above and beyond to love and care for their children. They hold the family together. They are the strongest, warmest, and most devoted people in the universe. That’s the power of motherhood. Yes, you’re one of them!
7. “Successful mothers are not the ones who have never struggled. They are the ones who never give up, despite the struggles.” – Sharon Jaynes
Being a mother is one of the most rewarding challenges in life, it’s also one of the most difficult. A mother’s love for their child is enduring and unconditional. The majority of us spend hours of our lives worrying about the choices and decisions we make — from the way we feed our baby, to the school they attend. We drive ourselves almost insane over some pretty inconsequential variables as we dream dreams for them that are bigger than those we ever had for ourselves. Unfortunately, for some mothers like me who are taking care of a kid with special needs, worries about obtaining the best life, the best medical care, and simply about keeping our children alive. We have to find gargantuan reserves of strength and resilience from deep within ourselves, to dig deep enough to find an abundance of positivity to create better lives for them.
8.”Motherhood is a choice you make every day, to put someone else’s happiness and well-being ahead of your own, to teach the hard lessons, to do the right thing even when you’re not sure what the right thing is…and to forgive yourself, over and over again, for doing everything wrong. – Donna Ball
Most mothers are giving, loving, and cheerful especially to their children. They have the ability to brighten your day, to see the good in you, and to stand by you no matter what. They make their children the top priority. They teach why it’s important to be kind, accepting, and loving. They are brave and smart in so many ways.
9.”The joy of motherhood comes in moments. There will be hard times and frustrating times. But amid the challenges, there are shining moments of joy and satisfaction.” – Elder M. Russell Ballard
It means that you should live the moments of being a mother. If you did not live in the moment enough you’ll regret it. Down moments or happy moments, just keep going.
Time spent with family is always a positive investment. You are very lucky to be a work at home mom. You will always enjoy spending time with your little ones. Don’t give up on every situation. It’s okay not to be okay sometimes. Tough times are always part of motherhood.
It was April 2019 when I decided to give up my career as a Store Officer for 4 years in the Retail Industry, before that I also worked in the Motorcycle Industry for 10 years where I started as a rank and file position until I got promoted and became a Branch Head.So giving up my career is a tough decision, imagine I have been working for almost 14 years but I have to give it up for my children, whose on their formative years my eldest daughter is 6 while my youngest son is 3, during that time my son is always sick and most of the time he was brought to the hospital, his recent was last February 2019, and that was the time I said to myself I will resign on my present job and focus on taking care of my kids. May 2019 I am a full-fledged housewife. I am so happy at that time because I know that it is my chance to make up time for my children.
I remember when I’m still working it was the month of December, a busy month in a Supermarket my eldest daughter asked me “hey Nanay, when is December 25?” I said why are you asking? and she said “ It’s only Christmas time when your store is closed and that is the time that we will be spending time together with Tatay and my little brother. I was about to cry, I hugged her and that time I felt guilty. Those were the days but now I have all the time in the world to make up with them.
But it was a big adjustment and challenge since I’m still in the process of getting used to the new role as a full-time housewife like doing the household chores, keeping everything at home in order like the laundry and cooking, thanks to my Mother in law who is very supportive in helping me with these chores, attending the kids and a lot more.
Of Course not only that my husband and I also consider the budget since now there is only single-income coming to our family, so we need to stick on our budget and know our finances. We make sure that during grocery time we have the list of the things we need to buy, we also have to identify the needs and wants of the family.
Now it’s been more than a year since I resigned and I must say that I already coped up as a stay at home mom. And now I am trying to explore the online jobs and aspire to become a work from home mom, I joined the Filipina Homebased Moms (FHMOMS) last January 17, 2020, and I learned a lot from this group, I’m inspired with all the stories of all the mommies who land their online jobs through this group, and now I am one of the student under Mommy Christine hoping after my training I will have the opportunity to find an online job as Virtual Assistant and work from the comfort of my home with my family.
“I always did something I was a little not ready to do. I think that’s how you grow. When there’s that moment of ‘Wow, I’m not really sure I can do this,’ and you push through those moments, that’s when you have a breakthrough.” ― Marissa Mayer former CEO YAHOO
I have been a full time mom for 11 years. And it’s very rewarding, to take care of my child. Most of my time I spent it with my son and I didn’t regret doing it because I saw him grow. That’s the reason why I didn’t have time to work but I have a part-time job, far from what I am studying now. My husband is a carpenter and is working abroad, then something happened in the company last year so he was offered another job ( as a merchandiser). It was a blessing because he’s still working today in spite of the pandemic. He will finish his contract this year in October but things didn’t go as we planned because of the pandemic, so we decided that he will extend his contract for another year. As a wife I want to help my husband financially, and now that my son is 11 years old I have more time to think about the possibility of working at home and at the same time caring for my son.You know when you have a baby you’re more occupied with your kid. I really wanted to help my husband financially until I heard about work from home from my sister in law. I got curious and interested about it.I asked her about it and she added me in a Fhmoms group. I read many inspiring experiences in that group, I read uplifting words especially when I was planning to start. And that helped me decide what I should do. I was excited but at the same time nervous because it’s been like more than 15 years since I study but when you have support from your family and I know that I’m doing it for them for myself and for my mom those fears and nervousness just got replaced by a desire to go for it.
Free Webinar or training
This most probably your first step, so many questions coming through your mind but because we have technology it’s easy to browse and search. When I heard about work from home jobs, I became interested. But at the same time I was in awe because there are so many online jobs on the internet. But watching a free webinar will help you decide what you’re gonna do next.
After watching free webinars or training I decided to enroll in a course or training. Which I know I need because watching only free webinars would be hard for me especially since I don’t have the skills that are needed in a job. Being a full time mom I need to develop skills to fit for a job. One of the groups in facebook is offering paid training. This was an opportunity for me to learn more about work from home jobs. And here are what they are offering:
1. Local and International E-commerce
2. General Virtual Assistance
3. Photo and video editing with Brand Marketing
4.Social Media Marketing
5.Accounting and Bookkeeping
6. Customer Service
7. ESL teaching
For someone like me who has no experience or skills you can check about this course or training.
It is never too late to study and learn new things. I know that whatever we choose as long as we’re doing it for our family we will never go wrong( as long as it’s legal). Either its work from home,online selling, online teaching or business, remember that:
How can I work if I have responsibilities at home?
As a mom we have our duties needs to fill up every day of our lives, sometimes we forgot our self just to give our family most of our time, being a mom we don’t have the ability to complain that we are tired, we just want to give them the best.
Now, we are suffering this pandemic as a mother we don’t stop thinking how can we survive on this Covid 19 and what is the impact in each every one of us, financially, health and balancing life and work.
As I am viewing in social media, I’ve seen a lot of post this freelancing and work from home platform then I start wondering what kind of work will it be and how a undergraduate will have this kind of work. I try to watch some of their free webinar seems it’s pretty good , then I started following them and attending some live session, that is the started thinking about it.
After 16 years of being a mom been struggling this anxiety that, Is this my life will be going, only at home, cleaning the house, cooking food and taking care of the kids. I talked to my husband can I work, he said “no” who will take care of the kids, as he always saying. Then as I see this GROUP, after attending their trainings, my confidence boost and said to myself that I can do this. My way of thinking change, don’t repeat what I regret from the past and should be positive now. Then I decided to enroll as a General Virtual Assistant as days passes by I’ve started learn new things. I keep my self exploring this experience to get some knowledge on this journey. Hope this is the start a new chapter of my life as a freelancer as I wanted a goal to achieve.
Experiencing my life now been changing routine this past few days for being a mother and a learner of this freelancing journey, and I am happy right now, been learning on this some application and tools, I share it also to my kids and we started bonding on it, doing this blog of mine I ask them if the pictures and text are good even my grammar, they are laughing sometimes and they shared also what they knew about some of the bloggers how to be themselves, and I share to them what I’ve learn to adapt in their online study that will start next month.
It’s not too late for us mothers who wants to be successful in life and having a strong mindset will reach the goals what we wants to achieve, Don’t be regretful as long as we know what we would like to achieve even we have priorities as a mom because If that it happens the first person will be happy for us is our family. Stay positive, productive and connected. Keep it up all momshies. Thanks for viewing my first blog.
Written by: Arian Amurao as dated of July 21, 2020
“Being a single parent is twice the work, twice the stress, twice the tears, but also twice the hugs, twice the love and twice the pride.”
When I got pregnant at the age of 24, back then it was a big deal for my family to handle and even for myself. I was just started my career as an engineer and part-time online reseller, started helping my family with the expenses and even started having a social life. I have a 10-year on and off relationship with the father of my children, one night after he came back from his long stayed work abroad, we hook up and it was then that I got pregnant with my eldest. He asked me to marry me for the sake of my daughter, I declined, but then his family kept on wooing me during the pregnancy period. I finally I said yes to marry him after giving birth. We lived for awhile with my parents and decided to move in with his parents. For a short period there was happiness because of my daughter but it got to the moment that it wasn’t really working. I succumbed to depression because I have to give up my jobs to embraced motherhood and wife series at the time. Later that year, he asked me if I wanted to work abroad, at that time, I wanted to earn a little and help out with the expenses.
The long distance relationship with this guy is like stories you’ve seen in “Maalaala Mo Kaya” teleserye scenario, where the guy does the “guy things” without realizing consequences. I was advised to go home and save the relationship. Tried to save the relationship and got pregnant and gave birth to my youngest and finally we decided to end it. The bitter outcome of that decision affected everyone in the family. In five years, I got pregnant with my children, got married, find a new place, and become single mother!
The succeeding years were tough to handle, their father left for work abroad and didn’t came back for another years while juggling in taking care of the children while working with the new job. My youngest, at the time was a year old and the oldest is five years old. The only time that we have to go out is Sunday where we would attend mass, eat out, do some grocery and go to playhouse. I remember the first time we went off for a stroll not in a mall, is at the Manila Zoo. It was hot day, we rode a boat, bonded with some animals, eat out, and the kids played with water fountain. It was indeed a happy day. I remember in those early years of separation, I want to make sure that we are in playing mood most of the time so they won’t see the pain. When we are together, we play outside, watch cartoon movies, play inside games, read books and others. One time, we went out for mall stroll like we usually do after attending Sunday mass, as soon as we reach the toy store, my daughter went to the girls section on the left wing while my son went off to the right wing. At the time, I thought I needed to go fetch my son and quickly followed my daughter. That was funny sweet moment I couldn’t forget, the beauty of being single….
Years passed by, I lean on my family, friends and work to cope up with separation and soon after, my daughter finished her elementary days, soon after my son followed. In these years, I’ve seen how they strive for their education, attended their every school participation, and attended family day events and graduation ceremonies.
During their high school days, I recalled their first crushes, send them off to their proms night, seen them grow with their friends, attended their cheer competitions, saw how they struggle as a teenager, double-time work as a parent here but we nevertheless, we never forget to make these moments, our bonding moments as well.
In the last three years, my eldest graduated with honors, went to US for an on-job-training for a year and started a career while my youngest has entered in college. We got the chance to travel to another country for the first time that is with the great help from my daughter though her savings in her work abroad.
In these times, I am more blessed of having them grown up because they are already starting taking responsibilities on their own and helping the family as well. God is really good because I am single but never alone!